John B. Fetter

John B. Fetter. age 74 of Kadoka, S.D., died Tuesday, September 7, 2010, at the VA Medical Center in Ft. Meade, surrounded by family and friends.

John B. Fetter was born April 10, 1936, in Martin, S.D., the son of Orvill and Bernece (Kimball) Fetter. He grew up 20 miles northeast of Martin on his parents' farm-ranch, attending Patricia School in that area.

John enlisted in the U.S. Army on June 4, 1954. After his training, he was stationed in France where he worked with an engineering group, maintaining and building roads. He was honorably discharged on June 3, 1956.

He returned to the farm-ranch for about a year before moving to Lead where he worked for Homestake Gold Mine. While in Lead, John joined the National Guard serving with companies in Lead, Deadwood and Spearfish for the 108th Engineering Batallion. John retired after 22 years with the National Guard. He was a member of the Steel Workers 7044, and a lifetime member of the VFW #5969. While working at Homestake, John also owned and operated a garbage service in the Lead-Deadwood area for many years.

After 31 years at Homestake Gold Mine, John moved to Kadoka where he started a new chapter in his life. He became a member of the Lions Club and the American Legion Post #27. John was a regular at the local coffee shops, where he always had time to visit with the locals. People quickly discovered that John had a heart of gold and would do anything for anybody who would treat him with respect and honesty.

John maintained a relationship with the Schumacher family, with whom he especially enjoyed the visits for the last few years. Prior to her passing, John spent many afternoons having smokes with Marie Schumacher.

John was small in stature, but his heart was huge. John was aware he had made mistakes in life and attempted to reconcile them. John adopted the whole town of Kadoka and would do anything for his friends.

John is survived by two brothers, Jim Fetter of Martin and Roy "Shorty" Fetter of Mesa, Ariz.; two sisters, Alice Harvey of Yankton and Opal Hopper of Merriman, Neb.; and many nieces and nephews. He is also survived by his adopted families, Terry and Kim Deuter, and their children and grandchildren; as well as the Schumacher family and their kids; his special friend Wanda Swan; as well as his very large extended family, Kadoka. John had two sons and one daughter.

John was preceded in death by his parents.

Funeral services were held Monday, September 13, at the Presbyterian Church in Kadoka, with Pastor Kathy Chesney officiating.

Music was provided by JoAnne Stilwell, pianist, and TJ Deuter on CD. Ushers were Jon Deuter and Bruce Madsen.

Pallbearers were Tracy O'Rourke, Ann Fugate, Pam Red Willow, Judy Red Willow, Penny Stout, Marsha Sumpter, Teresa Walker and Tammy Van Dam. Honorary pallbearers were Wanda Swan, Phyllis Word, Trooper Jason Hamar, Ray Clements, Jr., Bruce Madsen, Woody Davis, Trooper Clay Kartak, Tim Nutley, Trooper Slade Ross, and the coffee crew.

Graveside services with military honors by the Sturgis Honor Guard, were held Monday at Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis.

Any and all memorials will be given to Senior Meals of Kadoka.

Arrangements were with the Rush Funeral Chapel of Kadoka. His online guestbook is available at www.rushfuneralhome.com