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May 2, 2017 • Obituaries
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Norman E. Comer

Norman E. Comer, 91, of Greensburg, passed away Saturday, April 29, 2017 at Aspen Place Health Campus in Greensburg. He was born at home near Osgood on September 17, 1925, the son of George and Dorathea Thielbar Comer. He was married to Hazel Doyle on June 18, 1949 and she preceded him in death on February 22, 2013.

Survivors include one son, Duane (Joyce) Comer of Greensburg; three daughters, Cynthia (Tom) Rimstidt of Osgood, Linda (Fred) Cook of Canton, Ohio, and Vickie Youngman and her fiancé Randy Lynd of Greensburg; 11 grandchildren and 26 great grandchildren; one sister Mabel Flick of Holton; two brothers, Gayle (Barbara) Comer of Deerfield Lake, Florida, and Leroy (Louise) Comer of Osgood. He was also preceded in death by his parents, and his brothers Leonard and Clarence Comer.

Mr. Comer was a 1943 graduate of Osgood High School and graduated from Purdue University with a degree in agriculture in 1949. Norman was a former educator teaching agriculture and science in Osgood and Milton, Indiana school systems for nine years. In his working career he also served seven years as the Decatur County Assistant Extension Agent, assistant manager of the Decatur County Farm Bureau Co-op for three years, superintendent of roads for the Decatur County Highway Department, and for three years was a substitute mail carrier for the post office in Decatur County. Norman also worked as a farm loan officer for Union Bank & Trust for 15 years.

He was a member of the St. Paul Lutheran Church at Smyrna where he served as president of the church council, a member of the Purdue Agriculture Alumni Association, Decatur County Rural Couples Club, and the Decatur County Farm Bureau. He was an eight-year member and president of the Decatur County School Board, former member and treasurer of the Decatur County Red Cross and a former member of the Indiana Bankers Association. Norman was a 4-H member and leader for 56 years and was a founding leader of the Smyrna Guys and Gals 4-H club. Norman was recognized as an International Ambassador by People to People International, a non-profit organization dedicated to world peace through international understanding.
His wife Hazel and he had conducted national and international tours for 25 years. With his brother Clarence he represented Indiana in the National Plowing Contest for 11 years. Hazel and he were vendors at the farmers market in both Osgood and Batesville. Norman was an ambassador and first resident volunteer at Aspen Place where he has resided the last four years.

Funeral services for Norman will be held on Saturday, May 6 at 11 a.m. at the St. Paul Lutheran Church at Smyrna with Doug Brougher, worship leader officiating. Burial will be in the St. John Lutheran Cemetery at Napoleon. Visitation will be on Friday from 4-8 p.m. at the Stratton-Karsteter Funeral Home and from 10 a.m. until time of services Saturday at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Smyrna. Memorials may be given to the Shriner’s Hospital, St. Paul Lutheran Church, or Our Hospice of Decatur/Shelby in care of the funeral home.

Donald R. Smith

Donald R. Smith, 95, passed away Thursday, April 27, 2017 at his Greenwood residence. The son of Edward N. and Jessie Gray Smith, Donald was born January 23, 1922 in Versailles.

A U.S. Army veteran, he served in Europe during World War II. He earned the Purple Heart, the European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with three Bronze Stars, the American Theater Ribbon, the Good Conduct Medal (Army), the World War II Victory Medal, the Meritorious Unit Award and the Distinguished Unit Badge. Donald received his Bachelor’s Degree from Purdue University in 1949 and his Master’s Degree from the University of Indianapolis (Indiana Central College) in 1971. From 1961 to 1983, he was an 8th grade science teacher with the Greenwood Community School Corporation.

Donald was a member of the Greenwood United Methodist Church, where he taught the Homebuilders Class every Sunday for over 40 years; Greenwood Masonic Lodge #514 F.&A.M., the Indianapolis Valley of the Scottish Rite and the Kiwanis. Donald was a skilled and gifted painter, having exhibited at the Indiana State Fair and enjoyed working and taking pride in his yard and gardens.

Survivors include his son, Brent E. Smith of Greenwood; his daughter, Lisa (Jim) Alred of Carmel; brother, Robert E. (Esther) Smith of Versailles; grandchildren, Amy Smith Reeves, Susan Smith Riewerts, Kristen Smith Kertesz, Lincoln Smith, Daniel H. Alred and Christine Alred; eight great-grandchildren. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Eleanor Huffman Smith, whom he married on December 31, 1947 and brother, Lawrence Smith.

Services will be held at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, May 2 at Forest Lawn Funeral Home – 1977 South State Road 135, Greenwood. Burial with military honors will follow at Forest Lawn Memory Gardens, Greenwood. Contributions may be made to St. Francis Hospice – 5255 East Stop 11 Road, Suite 245 Indianapolis, Indiana 46237.

Sharon Rose (Meisberger) Eckstein

Sharon Rose (Meisberger) Eckstein, 73, of Indianapolis, passed away on Thursday, April 27, 2017. She was born on July 26, 1943, to the late Edward and Marie (Ebel) Meisberger in Milan.

Sharon was a graduate of New Marion High School in Ripley County, class of 1961 and was retired from Eli Lilly. Survivors include her loving husband of 51 years, William E. Eckstein; children, Kevin Eckstein and Kim Morrow (Aaron); former daughter-in-law, Allison Eckstein; siblings, John Meisberger, Bob Meisberger and Nancy Meisberger Watson (Bob Kriz); and grandchildren, Jack, Elise and Griffin Eckstein and A.J. and Mia Morrow. She was preceded in death by her parents; and siblings, Doris Meisberger, Mary Ann Naugle, Janet Cooper and Marilyn Browning.

A mass of Christian burial will be celebrated on Thursday, May 4 at 12 noon in St. Barnabas Catholic Church, 8300 Rahke Rd., with visitation prior to the service in the church from 10 a.m. to 12 noon. Entombment will follow Mass in Calvary Cemetery. Memorial contributions have been suggested to Christ the King Catholic School, 5858 N. Crittenden Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46220. Arrangements and care were provided by Lauck & Veldhof Funeral & Cremation Services. Online condolences:

Ernestine Louise Richards

Ernestine Louise Richards, 75, of Moores Hill, passed away Monday, May 1, 1017 at Good Samaritan Hospital, Cincinnati. Ernestine was born Sunday, August 24, 1941 in Milan, the daughter of Elmer and Viola (Hamilton) Gordon. She married Donald “Donnie” Richards September 7, 1957 and he preceded her in death March 12, 2013.

Ernestine was a homemaker and a member of the Holman Christian Union Church. She enjoyed cooking, camping, and taking care of her children and grandchildren. Ernestine is survived by daughters, Betty Louise (Robert) Cummings of Moores Hill, Mary (Michael) Addison of Dillsboro and Tena (Steve) Heller of Milan; brothers James, Don, and John Gordon; and sister Delores Snyder; six grandchildren and four great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, granddaughter Khristy Jane Taulbee, and brothers David, Ronald Eugene, Richard and Colin Gordon.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Thursday, May 4 at Holman Christian Union Church, 12020 N. Hogan Road, Aurora 47001, with Pastor Mike Addison officiating. Burial will follow in Forest Hill Cemetery at Moores Hill. Visitation will be Wednesday from 5-7 p.m., also at the church. Memorials may be given to the Dearborn County Community Mental Health. Sibbett-Moore Funeral Home, Moores Hill, is entrusted with arrangements. Go to to leave an online condolence message for the family.

Laurence Edwin Huntington

Laurence Edwin Huntington, 95, passed away at his home in Dearborn on November 21, 2016. Graveside services will be at 11 a.m., Saturday May 6 at Forest Hill Cemetery in Moores Hill with burial following. Memorials may be made in his name to the Down River United Methodist Church. Sibbett-Moore entrusted with arrangements, Box 156, Moores Hill, Indiana (812)744-3280. Go to to leave an online condolence message for the family.

Thomas H.E. Mitchell

Thomas H.E. Mitchell, 74, of Sunman, passed away Friday, April 28, 2017. Friends and family may call on Tuesday, May 2, from 5-7 p.m. with a memorial service beginning at 7 p.m. followed by military funeral honors, all at Meyers Funeral Home, Batesville. His ashes will be interred Wednesday, at Spring Grove Cemetery. Memorials may be given to the Michael J. Fox Foundation, for Parkinson’s Research c/o the funeral home.

Robert E. Lafary, Jr.

Robert E. Lafary, Jr., 65, of Versailles, passed away at 11:50 p.m., Saturday, April 29, 2017 at his home. He was born at the Margaret Mary Hospital in Batesville on October 29, 1951, the son of Robert and Donna Jo Bonfer Lafary. He was married to Kris Ford on March 24, 1990 and she survives. Other survivors include his mother Donna Jo Lafary of Versailles; one son Rob Lafary of Versailles; two daughters, Amy Jo Lafary of Champaign, Illinois, and Faith Renee Lafary of Versailles; one sister Lisa (Butch) Allee of Versailles; nephews Dustin and Dane Allee, his niece Shannon (Allee) Benham and his great-nieces Emma, Allee, Ella, and Ava. He is also survived by numerous individuals who considered him a father figure or simply referred to him as “Uncle Bobby.”

Mr. Lafary was a 1969 graduate of South Ripley High School and a 1971 graduate of Northwood University. Bob spent his career as a professional musician for 53 years and more specifically a professional drummer. He founded his first band the Steppin Stones as a teenager and in recent years headed the Bob Lafary Trio, playing several venues in the tri-state area. Away from music, he previously managed numerous hotels and restaurants throughout Southern Indiana, is a former employee and coach in the South Ripley Community School Corporation and was a licensed IHSAA baseball and softball umpire. Bob was an inductee of the Southeast Indiana Musicians Hall of Fame and he also attended the Versailles Baptist Church.

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, May 4 at 11 a.m. at the Stratton-Karsteter Funeral Home in Versailles with Rev. Mike Cantrell officiating. Burial will be in the Cliff Hill Cemetery in Versailles. Visitation will be on Wednesday from 4-8 p.m. Memorials may be given to the South Ripley Music Boosters to aid in their goal of purchasing new drums for the band or the Cliff Hill Cemetery in care of the funeral home.

Hazel Dwenger

Hazel Dwenger, 72, of Greensburg, passed away Sunday, April 30, 2017 at Franciscan Health in Indianapolis. Arrangements are pending at Sibbett-Moore Funeral Home, Moores Hill.

Mark W. Duncan

Mark W. Duncan, 65, of Holton, passed away Saturday, April 29, 2017. Services will be held at the convenience of the family. Laws-Carr-Moore Funeral Home is entrusted with arrangements, Box 243 Milan, In 47031; (812) 654-2141.

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