Cover photo for Evelyn A Wilder's Obituary
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1929 Evelyn 2020

Evelyn A Wilder

February 18, 1929 — June 3, 2020

Evelyn Arla Alice Thornton was born in Carrington, North Dakota on February 18, 1929 to Carl and Bertie Thornton.  She graduated to Heaven on June 3, 2020.

One of 16 children, Evelyn, known to all her siblings as ‘Katie’, attended school through the ninth grade.

On August 26, 1946, Evelyn married Harold Wilder.  To this union, four sons were born, Charles, Eddie, Eugene and Duane, who succumbed to crib death at three months of age.

The family lived in various small South Dakota towns while Harold worked for the railroad, before moving to Sheridan County in Nebraska in the late 1950s.

Evelyn worked at different grocery stores, restaurants and clothing stores through the years her sons were in school, including Ideal Market and JC Penney.

After all the boys were grown and married, Harold and Evelyn moved to Washington State near several of Evelyn’s siblings.  They moved back to Nebraska in 1990 and, when Harold was diagnosed with cancer, moved to Scottsbluff to be near his doctors.  He passed away in 1991 and Evelyn moved back to Gordon.  She worked at Alco for nearly 20 years before retiring and moving to an apartment in Rushville.

In 2016, following a near death experience, Evelyn moved in with her granddaughter, Kasa Sherlock, near Hemingford for about six months before moving to Broken Bow to be near her remaining son, Eddie.  She lived at Off Broadway for three years, enjoying Bingo three times a week, a real variety of entertainment that came to the facility, field trips to many different locations and attended the Berean Church with her son, Ed and daughter-in-law, Etta, every Sunday.  They often drove to Kearney or Grand Island so Evelyn could ‘shop’ – mostly enjoyed looking at things and comparing them to what she’d sold at Alco or JC Penney years before.   

Once the Covid-19 scare isolated her from all the people and things she loved, Evelyn began going downhill.  She lost her appetite and began losing weight.  In late April, Evelyn entered the local hospital with hopes they could get her back on track, but that didn’t happen and she entered Hospice at Brookestone View on April 27, 2020, where she remained until her death.

Evelyn was preceded in death by her parents, all fifteen of her siblings, her husband, three sons and two grandchildren.

Survivors include her son and daughter-in-law, Ed and Etta Wilder of Broken Bow, daughters-in-law Beverly Wilder of Gering and Lyn Wilder of Rushville, thirteen grandchildren, fourteen great-grandchildren and four great-great grandchildren.

Memorial service will be held Friday, June 5 at 2:00 p.m. at the Berean Bible Church in Broken Bow, NE with Pastor Tyce Jensen officiating. Inurnment will be at a later date in Scenic, South Dakota. A register book will be available to sign on Friday, June 5th from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. at the Berean Bible Church. Govier Brothers Mortuary are in charge of arrangements. An online register book may be signed at




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