FAIRMONT - Services for Vera Marie Custard, 96, of Fairmont, Minn., will be 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013, at Lakeview Funeral Home in Fairmont. Vera passed away Friday afternoon, Jan. 11, 2013, at Mayo Clinic Health System in Fairmont, Minn. Visitation will be 4-6 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18, and one hour prior to the services on Saturday.
Lakeview Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.
Vera Marie Griese was born Nov. 13, 1916, on a farm near Dolliver, Iowa, the daughter of John and Hilda (Hagebock) Griese. She attended Dolliver Consolidated School, graduating in 1935. Even as a teenager, Vera was interested in children and nursing. She began by being a "mother's helper" to families in her rural area. Vera also worked for Dr. Morton at the Park View Clinic in Estherville and helped deliver her niece, Shirley. She later took a correspondence course from the Chicago School of Nursing and received a licensed practical nursing certificate (LPN).
On April 14, 1940, Vera married Richard Andre, but unfortunately, this marriage ended in divorce. She then moved to Fairmont, Minn., with her parents on Feb. 14, 1943, and began working at the Railway Motors. Vera was a clerk typist in the production department and a workplace first aid nurse until retiring in 1978 after 35 1/2 years. Vera had an extraordinary ability to remember numbers and could recall most of the parts numbers in her department. As a result, she was asked to assist when the company's inventory was computerized. During this time, she continued to live with her parents and to help with their needs.
On July 19, 1980, Vera was united in marriage to Edgar Custard. They had both worked at the Railway Motors and retired at the same time. At age 65, Vera had found true love and she and Ed shared 32 years together until his recent death on Dec. 28, 2012. She never had children of her own, but Ed's family and her own extended family, happily filled that void.
Vera loved to dance, be with family and friends, do needlework and crochet. She created beautiful afghans, until just recently, for loved ones and for veterans' hospitals and care homes. She was a member of the Degree of Honor Lodge, serving several times as President. She was also a member of the Eagles Club and the United Methodist Church in Fairmont. Even into her 90s, she, along with Ed, delivered Meals on Wheels and transported donated food from their church to the Salvation Army.
Left to cherish her memory is her niece, Shirley Lynch and husband, Robert, of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, and a nephew, Roger Ayers and wife, Theresa, of Fairmont, Minn.; four great-nephews, Marc Lynch (Sylvia), Grace and Jackson of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada; Shaun Lynch (Beth) of Herrliberg, Switzerland; Scott Rosenberg (Lori), Ashlyn, Brigette and Callie of Worthington, Minn.; Chad Rosenberg of Redwood Falls, Minn. One great-niece, Trista Ayers of St. Paul, Minn.; one nephew-in-law, Russell Rosenberg of Fairmont, Minn.; Vera is also survived by her late husband Ed's children, Dwayne Custard (Karen) of Inver Grove Heights, Minn., David Custard (Peg) of West St. Paul, Minn., Dorene Luhmann of Fairmont, Minn., Peggy Nelson (Richard) of Granada, Minn., and Gayla Miller (Jim) of Fairmont, Minn.; 16 grandchildren; 25 great-grandchildren; two step great-grandchildren; and two great great-grandchildren. She will be greatly missed by all who loved her.
Vera was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Ed; sister, Mabel Ayers; brother-in-law, Otis Ayers; niece, Lois Rosenberg; and by Clarence Kish, a cousin who was raised by Vera's parents.
A very special thank you to the entire Custard family who took Vera into their lives and did so much for her for so many years.