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1926 Donita 2020

Donita Ferguson

September 19, 1926 — July 27, 2020

Donita Mae (Smith) Ferguson passed away at Brookestone View on July 27, 2020. Donita was born to Ray Clinton Smith and Cora Opal (Burns) Smith on September 19, 1926 on a farm northeast of Sargent, Nebraska. She joined older sister Hazel and later the family welcomed younger sister Emma Lou. Her family moved to Weissert when she was 3 years old and to a farm outside of Broken Bow when she was 5 years old. She attended all of her schooling in Broken Bow graduating with the class of 1943. This same year she started her bookkeeping career at J.H. Melville Lumber Company. It was while she was working at Melville’s that she would walk pass Clyde Arnold’s Feed store to have lunch downtown. She noticed a young man, Ivan E. Ferguson who was often outside loading feed when she passed by and it was not long before she engaged him in conversation. This friendship grew and on July 3, 1946 Ivan and Donita were married in Long Pine, Nebraska. They often said this one-day trip with best friends, Lyle and Lucille VanHorn was the favorite day of their lifetime. Ivan and Donita welcomed 4 children to their family, Barbara Rae, Opal Marie, Nancy Ann and Ivan Eugene Jr.

Donita and Ivan spent all of their lives enjoying the activities of their family. Whether it was helping their kids with their 4-H projects, school involvements, church activities or extended family gatherings they had fun. Many weekends and vacations were spent tent camping as a family. One of Donita and Ivan’s favorite things to do was dance. If there was a dance, especially during the big band era, Ivan and Donita would be there. Even with the responsibilities of a family of 6 Donita continued working outside the home. Besides working at Melville’s, she also worked as a bookkeeper for Broken Bow Credit Bureau and J.C. Penneys. Donita completed her employment years managing the Messages Hallmark Shop for 20 years for her daughter, Nancy. Donita loved her time at Messages making many new friends with the customers. Throughout her life Donita was active in American Legion Auxiliary, VFW Auxiliary, Broken Bow Alumni, and the First Baptist Church where she was a lifetime member. She especially enjoyed the monthly “Birthday Group” of friends Jean, Marion, Phyllis, Dona, Toni, Shirley, and Ann. They shared a lifetime of memories and laughter. After her children were grown Donita spent the same time and energy with her grandchildren as she had with her own children and in her later years with her great grandchildren.

Donita was preceded in death by her husband, Ivan; daughter Barbara; sister Hazel (Dick) Kapustka; sister Emma Lou Clay; as well as Ivan’s siblings and spouses. She will be missed by her children Opal, Nancy and Ivan Jr. & Gary Babbitt, Grandchildren and Great grandchildren Corrina Duryea (Andrew and Preston); Carla & Chuck Davis (Alexandria, Scott); Carey & Jim Haskell (Meredith, Jace and Amy); Carlie & Kim Wells (Cyrus, Connor, Cal, Cobe); Carmen & Anson Bumgarner (Sawyer and Ida Mae); as well as 9 great great grandchildren.

A private immediate family service will be Thursday, July 30, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. at the Govier Brothers Chapel in Broken Bow. The service will be livestreamed at www.govierbrothers.com . Burial will be in the Broken Bow Cemetery. Memorials are suggested to the Custer County Ag Society. Visitation will be Wednesday, July 29, 2020 from 10:00 a.m.to 7:00 p.m. at Govier Brothers Mortuary. An online guest book may be signed for words of encouragement or remembrance at www.govierbrothers.com. Govier Brothers Mortuary will comply with the CDC and State of Nebraska. We sincerely encourage each person to make your decision whether to attend based on the best interest of your health and that of your community.

 


                             

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