|2001 Journey to the Homeland Tour Group.
Journey to the Homeland: Odessa, Ukraine and Stuttgart,
May 22 - June 4, 2001
Biographies of Tour Group Members
Eileen Aafedt, Mesa, Arizona & Munich, North Dakota
My lineage is from the Dick (Gossen) and Janzen (Wiens) families.
I was born on a farm near Munich, North Dakota (Cavalier County).
I am the first child of Albert C. and Katherine (Janzen) Dick. I
have three sisters and one brother.
I grew up speaking only "low German." Although my parents
could speak German and English, we only spoke German at home. I
consequently had to learn a new language when I first attended school.
This was such a frustrating experience for both myself and my teacher.
It's amazing how the years can cloud a memory, as I now have a very
difficult time recalling words in German. I graduated from high
school in 1953. Following graduation, I worked one year in Devils
Lake, North Dakota, as a bookkeeper at a Chevrolet garage and seven
years at the bank in Munich. I married L. Wayne Aafedt in June of
1959. We have four married daughters and 13 gramdchildren. My grandchildren
are the joy of my life!
Wayne was the third generation owner of Aafedt's Meat Market in
Munich. The Aafedts were the first Norwegian family to move into
our German community. They became very good at making German sausage,
but were good-naturedly teased about "Norwegians making German
sausage." After the children were all in school, I helped Wayne
at the meat market. My main job was to make the sausage (at last,
a real German sausage maker). I did that for 17 years until we retired
in 1995. We spent our "retirement" winters in Arizona.
In 1998, Wayne was diagnosed with cancer and passed away later that
My paternal and maternal great-grandparents were German immigrants
from Russia. My paternal relatives settled in Mountain Lake, Minnesota.
My grandfather, who homesteaded in North Dakota, was the only one
to leave Minnesota. My maternal relatives settled in Henderson,
Nebraska. Grandfather Janzen left Nebraska to homestead in North
Sadly, I never knew my grandfathers, as they passed away before
my parents were married. I do, however, have many fond memories
of gathering at my Grandma Dick's farm with all my uncles, aunts,
and cousins. We always had so much fun playing baseball in the summer
months and a popular board-game "carom" in the winter.
I knew all my relatives on both sides and still, in fact, write
to many of my cousins.
I spend winters in Arizona and do many interesting things in our
Sun Life Court. I take acrylic painting and computer classes, sing
in a church choir, and enjoy being with friends. In North Dakota
I have a home to keep up. I entertain friends and visit the children
and grandchildren that live in North Dakota and Nebraska. During
the months of June and July, I volunteer time at a Bible Camp. I
am active in our church. There are never enough hours in the day
to do everything I would like to do.
I am going on this tour with my sister-in-law and her husband (Dianne
and Charles Rohde). And am looking forward to visiting places near
my ancestors' homeland.
Elizabeth (Baron) Anton, St. Louis, Missouri
Ancestral villages: Karlsruhe, Katharinental, Landau, [Beresan District]
I was born in Karlsruhe, Beresan District in 1924. My parents
were Alexander and Rosa Baron. My mother's maiden name was Baron,
too. I was the third of six children. I went to school for 10 years
in Karlsruhe. The education at school was in German; I never learned
the Russian language. I left Russia in 1943, went to Poland, then
to St. Polten, Austria. In 1945, I went to Mieders near Innsbruck,
Tyrol. In 1946, I came to Germany, and finally in 1951 to Mandan,
My uncle, Lorenz Baron, was my sponsor. His wife, Monica, ran Baron's
Old Age Home. I worked for them one year. I moved to Bismarck, ND
in 1952, and worked at St. Alexius Hospital for 39 years in maternity.
In 1991, I married Emanuel Anton and moved to St. Louis, MO. My
husband, Emanuel Anton, died in 1999. He was born in Karlsruhe,
Beresan District, too.
I have two sisters and two sisters-in-law, who live in Germany.
My third sister still lives in Kazakhstan. My last trip to Russia
was in 1983 with a group of nurses, where we toured hospitals and
met with other health professionals.
This time I just want to see my hometown, Karlsruhe, and my parents'
and grandparent's homes-maybe the Baron Well or the man-made lake
named after my grandfather Friedrich (Fritzedamm), but last but
not least, the cemetery where my father, grandparents, and many
relatives were buried.
Mary Margaret Steger Carpenter, Owasso, Oklahoma
Ancestral villages: Kandal, Kutschurgan Valley; Landau, Kustanay,
I am a retired Navy Reservist and Los Angeles city school cook.
I was born (1934), raised, and lived in the Los Angeles area for
all but the last two years. We sold our home in California and are
full-time recreational vehicle travelers. My Catholic education
was from St. Columbkille's and St. Mary's Academy. Then came active
duty in the Navy in 1952, where I met my Marine hubby, Jim. Duty
stations were: Bainbridge, MD, Jacksonville, FL, San Diego, CA,
and Santa Ana, CA. In December I was discharged, as #1 son was on
the way. We now have three (one Navy retiree, two Navy veterans)
sons, four grandchildren, two great-grandsons.
Once the boys were school age, I started work with the Los Angeles
City Board of Education, eventually retiring as a Senior Elementary
School Cafeteria Manager. The job entailed: meal planning, ordering
food and supplies, banking, city, state and federal records keeping,
work schedules, cooking and baking for two daily meals (approximately
250 for breakfast and 475 for lunch).
The Navy Reserves beckoned in 1975, and in I went as a MSI (Mess
Management Specialist) and retired as an MSCS (Senior Chief). While
with VP65, a P-3 Orion aircraft squadron at Point Mugu, CA, I was
privileged to become the squadron's flying cook, while accumulating
over 2,400 hours in the aircraft while preparing meals for the air
crew (7-21) and VIPs. Doesn't sound like much, but the only built-ins
were a small convection oven, two hot cups, three electric outlets
and a tiny refrigerator. The cook box held the two electric griddles,
two fry pans, one hot plate and other necessities. The biggest challenge
was an 11 day trip, nine meals for 20 people and no shopping along
the way! A lot of planning and advance preparation, but it came
off without a hitch. Menus ranged from gourmet to Italian, Mexican,
Chinese, and American. Even baked pies, cakes, etc. Thanks to the
Navy, I had the privilege of visiting Spain, North Africa, the Azores,
Guam, Saipan, Korea, Puerto Rico, Singapore, England, Scotland,
Kuwait, and two deployments on the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz.
Now that was an experience.
My mother and her parents were born in Russia: Mom, Magdalena Mary
Lehmmer, born in Kustany, Kazakhstan, April 1910, died 1971 in CA.;
Gram, Margaretha F. Wolf (e), born in Kandel, Kutschurgan Valley,
on April 27, 1883, died in 1939 in CA. Grandpa Paul's last name
has been spelled: Lehmmer, Lehmer, Lemar, Lemmer, LeMaire. His mother
was Magdalena Kemp (e), date and place of birth and death unknown;
his father was John, born in Kandel, date of birth and death unknown.
To my knowledge, Grandpa Paul had one sister, Ottilie, and two brothers.
The brothers supposedly went to Canada. Grandpa died when I was
five, but the memories are of a very patient, loving, happy man.
Gram's parents are Conrad
Wolfe (e) from Poland, and Augustina Gumper from Austria. After
Augustina died, Conrad remarried and eventually Gram and her two
brothers were taken to Russia to live with her older sister. Gram's
sister married John Keller. The only extended family names that
I know are Keller, Koffler, and Heilman from the Dickinson area.
The family sailed on the SS Main, arriving December 1913. Mom's
siblings are: Paulina Lehmmer Goeffroy, born January 19, 1912 in
??, and Lorenz M. Lemar, born April 2l, 1914, died 1963 in the Veterans
I became interested in genealogy about two years ago, but have
not spent as much time as I'd like surfing the net. My parents made
sure I knew all the families in the USA, so every four or five years
they planned a trip East that had visits with all the family from
Minnesota to Montana. Sorry to say, in those days I wasn't too interested
in "old folks stuff" and they never spoke of their families
or lives while in Russia. My first trip to Germany was in June 2000,
when I drove a rental car for 22 days, saw the Passion Play and
World's Fair, and everything else that I could. I loved the country
and people, but felt my lack of the German language was a barrier.
In December, hubby Jim and I were on our first tour, "Christmas
Shopping in Europe", which just made the churches and buildings
in Germany seem more spectacular.
I hope to eventually visit Kustanay, St. Petersburg, and Moscow.
The "dream of dreams" is to fill in the missing blanks
on both sides of my parents' genealogy and to meet relatives I didn't
know I had.
Carl Mack, San Jose, California
Ancestral villages: Elsass, Kutschurgan; Krasna, Bessarabia
I was born in Woodworth, North Dakota, on October 31, 1936. My
grandfather, John Silbernagel, (born 1891) immigrated to Strasburg,
North Dakota, in 1898 with his parents Joseph and Leopoldina (Biegler)
Silbernagel. Their village was Elsass, Kutschurgan, South Russia.
Leopoldina was born in Mannheim, Kutschurgan, South Russia. I have
traced the Silbernagels back to Plersweiler-Oberhofen, Rheinland-Pfalz.
My grandmother, Angela Miller (born 1891) immigrated to the United
States in 1894 with her parents, Peter and Agnes (Schreiner) Miller.
Their village was Krasna, Bessarabia, South Russia. They also settled
in Strasburg, North Dakota.
I am looking forward to spending some time in my ancestral villages.
Michael M. Miller, Fargo, North Dakota
Ancestral villages: Straßburg, Kutschurgan District; Krasna, Bessarabia
Michael writes, "My first visit to the villages of Straßburg
and Krasna in June of 1994 is an experience I shall never forget.
I was especially touched by the warmth and friendship of the local
villagers. I returned to Odessa and to the home of the late Antonina
Welk Ivanova in the village of Selz in December 1995."
Michael was raised in Strasburg, North Dakota, learning to speak
English and German. His college degrees are from Valley City State
University and the University of North Dakota. He has been on the
NDSU Libraries staff since 1967, where he compiled the annotated
bibliography, Researching the Germans from Russia, published
by the Institute for Regional Studies, NDSU, 1987.
He serves as Bibliographer of the Germans from Russia Heritage
Collection, NDSU Libraries. Since 1999, he has been an executive
producer for Prairie Public Television including the award-winning
documentaries: "The Germans from Russia: Children of the Steppe,
Children of the Prairie" (1999), and "Schmeckfest: Food
Traditions of the Germans from Russia" (2000).
He has visited Odessa and the former German villages each year
since 1994 to 2001.
Charles and Dianne Rohde, Langdon, North Dakota
Ancestral villages: Josefstal, Liebental District; Borgentreich
near Kassel, Gleuckstal District
Charlie farmed the family farm and acquired acres in Cavalier
County, North Dakota, growing spring wheat, durum wheat, barley,
sunflowers, canola, and flax. A farm auction was held in October
2000, and land that had previously been rented to neighboring farmers.
Charlie kept 160 acres and a minimum of equipment.
Charlie is a member of North Dakota Grain Growers and Canola Growers,
past president of Durum Growers, and shareholder in Dakota Growers
Pasta Plant. As Durum Growers president, he helped organize the
Dakota Cares project which delivered 10 pound bags of North Dakota
flour to needy people in St. Petersburg in January 1992, and visited
there at that time. He is presently a member of the North Dakota
State Wheat Commission.
Charlie and Dianne were on a "People to People" farm
tour in May 1993, visiting farms and other points of interest in
Moscow, Kiev, Minsk, and St. Petersburg (where he visited some of
the people he met in 1992).
Charlie's maternal grandparents came from Josefstal in Odessa.
Grandfather was Christian Bachmann, born in 1867, and grandmother
was Elizabeth Fetsch. Grandmother's sister married Jake Matcri,
many people of this name in the book "From the Steppes to the
Prairies". (Fetsch could have been Vetsch)
Charlie served in U.S. Army from 1954-56 near Darmstadt in Germany
and served as interpreter for his company. Albert Rohde, Charlie's
father, was born in Borgentreich near Kassel and came to the U.S.
in 1912. German was the language at home and working on the farm.
Dianne (Aafedt) Rohde graduated from NDSU and taught high school
economics for five years until the family occupied her time. Rohdes'
have four children: Gayle, a pharmacist in Fargo, has two children;
Paul does computer work for EDS, living in
ElPaso; Gwen is a nurse practitioner and married to a farmer in
the Langdon area; Peter is a manager for a Cargill elevator and
lives in West Lafayette, Indiana. Peter and Erika have four children.
Dianne's family is of Norwegian descent. She helped establish the
county library, working there for 20 years and does volunteer work
there now. She is on the board of the county historical society
and does volunteer work there. Other interests are sewing, reading,
auctions, and refinishing furniture.
Dianne and Charlie spend winters in Arizona: 205 South Higley,
#57, Mesa, AZ 85206
Norlin Rueschhoff, Granger, Indiana
I was born in Stanton County, Nebraska, a rural ethnic German
community. Upon graduation from Dodge High School, I was employed
by the Farmers State Bank in Dodge, Nebraska, until volunteering
for the U.S. Air Force. Upon honorable discharge, I matriculated
at Creighton University, receiving a B.S. degree in Commerce. After
one year of graduate school, I spent almost six years in Germany
primarily as an internal auditor and chief accountant for Stars
and Stripes [military newspaper].
During this time, I learned to speak German and met my wife who
was born in Emmental, Bessarabia (Rumania at that time). Then I
returned to my graduate studies at the University of Nebraska and
later commenced employment at the University of Notre Dame where
I am yet today as a Professor of Accountancy. Among my assignments
at Notre Dame, was one year as Director of the Foreign Studies program
in Innsbruck, Austria. I have a daughter who speaks German fluently
and lives with her husband and family of three in Des Plaines, Illinois.
Monsignor Joseph Senger, Minot, North Dakota
Ancestral Villages: Karlsruhe, Beresan District
I was born in the home of my parents, Joe W. and Elizabeth (Thomas)
Senger in Orrin (formerly Kandel), North Dakota. I attended school
there for eight grades. Then I attended high school at Balta, North
Dakota, and also Assumption Abbey, Richardton, North Dakota. For
two years, I attended college at St. Johns, Collegeville, Minnesota.
Then I completed college at St. Paul Seminary, St. Paul, Minnesota,
and also studied theology there. I was ordained a priest on May
1, 1954 for the Fargo Diocese, in Fargo, North Dakota.
Two years I spent as associate pastor at St. Marks Church, Bottineau,
North Dakota. In 1956, I served as the personal secretary to Archbishop
Aloisius Muench, in Bonn, Germany, where he served as the Vatican
Ambassador (Nuncio) to Germany. In 1959, Muench was created a Cardinal,
with assignments at the Roman Curia. There I served one year as
his secretary, returning to the Fargo Diocese in 1960.
My pastor assignments were: St. Arnold, Milnor, North Dakota, and
St. Mary, Knox, North Dakota. From 1971 to 1985, I was pastor at
St. Mary's, Grand Forks, North Dakota. From 1985 to 2000, I was
pastor of St. Cecilia of Velva and Sts. Peter and Paul of Karlsruhe,
North Dakota. In July 2000, I retired from regular pastor assignment,
and continue to substitute for priests on a rather regular basis.
I have a keen interest in my German-Russia heritage, since my father
was born in Karlsruhe in Ukraine-Russia. Also, since I served for
three years in Germany at the Vatican Embassy or Nunciature, I have
a strong affinity to Germans. I have cousins living in Germany who
returned there from Siberia.
Betty (Baron) Thatcher, Tigard, Oregon
Ancestral villages: Karlsruhe, Landau, Speyer (Beresan District)
I was born in Mandan, North Dakota, in 1926. My parents were Christian
Baron and Margaret Schmidt, and I am the third of seven children.
My parents were born in Karlsruhe in the Beresan District. My father
came to North Dakota with a cousin in 1913; and my mother came with
her parents, grandmother and two sisters, settling in Fallon, North
Dakota. The Schmidt family moved to Lodi, California, in 1921. Only
one of my father's eight siblings, his brother, Lorenz, came to
the U.S. He farmed in the Fallon area. I recently learned that another
brother had been mayor of Karlsruhe, North Dakota, in the early
My family moved to Portland, Oregon, in 1943. After graduating
from nursing school, I was in the Navy Nurse Corps for two years
during the Korean War. After my tour of duty, I returned to Portland
and began my career as an operating room nurse, working in hospitals
in most of the western states. I retired after the death of my husband
Travel has been my favorite hobby. My most memorable trip was to
Russia with a group of Oregon nurses. We toured their hospitals
and met with other health professionals. Three sisters and a cousin,
born in Karlsruhe, North Dakota, were with me. We met two of her
sisters whom she had not seen in 40 years; they now live in Germany.
One other sister is still in Kazakhstan. On a visit to Germany in
1991 with my younger sister, I met my father's one surviving sister.
Communication was a challenge, as no one spoke English and my German
was very basic, but we did manage.
I volunteer at a senior center and have recently taken up golf
again, weather permitting (that means no rain or temperature above
80). I am anxiously looking forward to the trip and especially to
visiting the village of Karlsruhe. I plan to stay longer in Germany
to see relatives, research records with their assistance, and complete
our family history.
Betty was a member of the first tour group to Odessa in May 1996,
which included Bishop Joseph Werth of Novosibirsk, Siberia, Russia.
She was also a member of the June 2000 tour.
Milo Thomas, Fargo, North Dakota
Ancestral villages: Selz, Baden, Mannheim, Kendel (Kutschurgan
District), and Odessa
Mechanical Engineering Student at North Dakota State University.
I was born November 17, 1966 in Fargo, North Dakota. One hundred
percent German-Russian from my father, English and German from my
mother. I returned to Fargo to complete a higher education after
30 years living in over half a dozen towns across the state.
I have always had an interest in my family heritage, but the match
that set the fire was a history class I took while attending Bismarck
State College. Before this time I had only known that I was of German-Russian
descent. With the encouragement and help from my mother (who works
at the North Dakota Historical Society), I began my research. In
1998, the Thomas's had an all-Thomas family reunion in Harvey, North
Dakota, celebrating 110 years in America.
Not having much to say about myself, I will tell you of the information
I have found. There are only the sisters on my father's side. Each
person is proceeding back farther in time.
My father, Merlyn Thomas, was born December 14, 194l in Esmond,
North Dakota. Married Betty Wellman from Barnesville, Minnesota,
in 1965 and had three children; two boys and a girl. He now owns
and operates Thomas Body Shop in Beulah, North Dakota.
My grandfather, Casper Thomas, also was born in rural Esmond, North
Dakota, January 25, 1909. He married Magdelena Schmidt in 1930 and
had two boys and two girls. They moved to Sykeston, North Dakota,
in 1945. Magdelena Schmidt born May 6, 1910 in Devils Lake, North
Dakota still lives there at the age of 91 and enjoys driving her
friends to Carrington (43 miles away) twice a week for bingo. Casper
died September 20, 1988 of cancer.
Casper's father, Andrew Thomas, was born December 1, 1886 in Selz,
Ukraine. This is the man I take my second name from. He married
Appolonia Haberloch in 1906 and had five boys and two girls. Their
first son, Aloys, was dragged to death by a team of horses at the
age of 10. He now lies in the Odessa Boniface Cemetery near Selz,
North Dakota. Appolonia was born November 28, 1885 in Odessa, Ukraine.
She and Andrew now lie in the St. Anthony Cemetery in Selz. It is
said Andrew had never been in the hospital in his lifetime.
The Thomas pioneer, Andrew's father Franz Thomas, was born November
25, 1842 in Selz, Ukraine. Married Veronica Lipp some time before
1868. On November 20, 1888, Frank, Veronica, and their four children
arrived in New York City aboard the ship Trave. They first lived
in Eureka, South Dakota, and then moved to the East Fork Township
near Wellsburg, North Dakota. On April 13, 1909, Frank left this
world by becoming lost in a blizzard on the way back to the farmhouse
from the barn. He lies in the St. Boniface Odessa Cemetery, three
miles northeast of Selz.
A little twist to this story is Magdelena Schmidt's mother, Margaret
Braunagel. Margaret was born December 4, 1884 in Baden, Ukraine.
She is the daughter of Kasimir Braunagel of Baden, Ukraine, and
Philippina Schatz of Mannheim, Ukraine. The Schatz are listed only
two families from the Thomas's on the Trave's passenger list.
Magdelena's father, Sebastian Schmidt, is a direct descendent of
the Liesmeister family from Kandel, Ukraine. This is the only family
by that name among the original immigrants to Russia. Sebastian's
father may have been a member of the Schmidt family that was also
one of the families that founded the village of Kandel. When Sebastian
died suddenly, Margaret married Stephen Torscher, also from the
To summarize the rest of the story, Franz Thomas was the son of
Andreas Thomas and Josefa Lingor, both from Selz, Ukraine. Andreas'
father was Joseph Thomas, son of Franz and Maria Thomas, who were
from Neeweiler, Alsace, and one of the founding families of Selz,
Appolonia Haberloch's parents are Ludwig Haberlach and Magdelena
Meier from Odessa. Sebastian's father and mother-in-law were George
and Magdalena Leistmeister from Kandel, Ukraine.
Margaret Braunagel's father, Kasimir, is the son of Anton Braunagel
and Marianna Ell from Baden, Ukraine. Kasimir's wife, Phillipina
Schatz, is likely a granddaughter of Ignatz Schatz and Wasburga
Suchert, a founding family of Mannheim from Selz, Alsace. Anton
Braunagel's father, George Adam Braunagel, was the son of Joseph
and Eva Braunagel from Oss, Germany.
I hope this will help you know where I come from and perhaps some
of these names and places may have intertwined in your ancestry
I was privileged to have had such available resources as the state
historical society and the Germans from Russia Historical Society
in Bismarck. And now to have Michael Miller at the state university
I attend. Without these resources and the help of all the people
involved, I may not have ever had this dream or the chance to make
it come true. Thanks to you all.
Loretta J. (Phlieger) Turner, Quinter, Kansas
Ancestral villages: Kleinliebenthal; Liebenthal District, Kandel;
Elsass Kutschurgan District.
My lifelong dream of visiting the birthplaces of my father and
maternal grandparents is coming true, through the generosity of
our children. As a gift for our 45th wedding anniversary, they have
given us the Journey to the Homeland tour to Russia and Germany
in May 2001.
My lineage is from the families of Phlieger/Schneider/Bitz and
My father, Michael Phlieger, was born in Elsass (Kutschurgan District)
and came to this country in November 1909, with his parents, Anton
and Christina (Schneider), siblings, and his grandfather, Thomas.
At the time of arrival, the name was spelled Pfluger. His mother
died in childbirth in March of 1910. They settled in Collyer, Kansas.
His aunt, Mary (Phlieger) Ziegler, also settled in Collyer, while
his uncle, Jake, and Eva (Burckhard) Phlieger went to Devils Lake,
North Dakota. Some of my grandmother's family escaped to Germany
in the '40s, where they now reside.
My mother, Rosina (Waldman) Phlieger, was born in Park, Kansas
in 1906. Her parents, Ferdinand and Ottilia (Bitz) Waldmann (Kleinliebenthal
and Kandel) were married in 1892. Since my father was of draft age,
his father urged him to come to the U.S. and they did so shortly
after they were married, and settled in Zeeland, North Dakota, with
relatives already there, the Schmalz's. Two daughters were born
there in 1893 and 1895. The grandparents in Russia missed them and
wanted them to come back, and they did so in 1895. Ferdinand was
immediately drafted into the Russian army and served 6 years. They
came again to the U.S. with their children, siblings, and grandparents,
George and Leocadia (Fucher-Bitz) Waldmann. Two siblings remained
in Russia and were never heard from again. This time, they settled
in Park, Kansas, about seven miles from Quinter. Ferdinand died
at the age of 42, leaving my grandmother with six children and one
child who was born soon after his death.
My love of genealogy came from my mother-in-law, to whom I will
be forever grateful. My only regret is that I did not listen more,
and write more down, as those who knew are now gone.
I was born on the family farm near Quinter on October 8, 1936.
I also attended country school through 8th grade, then attended
a private school for three years, returning in my senior year to
graduate at Quinter High School in 1955. My husband and I were married
in September 1955, and have seven children and four grandchildren.
We have been business owners most of our lives. At the present,
I work part-time at the Gove County Treasurer's office in Gove,
Kansas. My hobbies are calligraphy, gardening, and painting.
We both love to travel, and spend time with our family. We are
still in awe of being privileged to make this trip and praise the
Lord for the opportunity to connect with our past. There is a deep
longing in one's heart to know where our roots are. This is the
trip of a lifetime, and we thank Michael Miller and all who make
Wesley J. Turner, Quinter, Kansas
Ancestral villages: North Rhine, Westphalia
My lineage is from the families of Turner/Weatherby/Long (Solingen,
North Rhine, Westphalia) and Wolf (Solingen).
I am of German descent, but not German-Russian, and am coming along
to share the experience. I was born in my family home in Quinter,
Kansas, on July 30, 1937, the fourth of five children of Lee and
Della (Long) Turner. We attended country school through 8th grade
and graduated from Quinter High School in 1955. I also attended
Fort Hays State University for two years. My wife and I met as seniors
in high school and have been married 45 years, have seven children
ranging in age from 44 to 26 years, and have four grandchildren
ages 16, 14, 12, and 10 years of age. Most live in different parts
of Kansas, one in Tampa, Florida, and one works in Sacramento, California,
at this time. We live within 2-1/2 miles of where we were both born,
about five miles from Quinter, population 900.
We owned our own business, a meat processing and slaughter plant
with frozen storage, for 27 years, selling in 1989. At the present
time, I am in meat retail sales, and have an Internet-based business.