Mary Ellen Schofield

Mary Ellen Schofield, age 92 of Midland, S.D., died Sunday, March 13, 2011, at the Hans P. Peterson Memorial Hospital in Philip.

Mary Ellen Gillaspie was born September 7, 1918, at her grandparents' home northeast of Ottumwa, the daughter of James and Mary Margaret (Ball) Gillaspie.

She grew up in the Ottumwa area and attended several different rural schools in that area, before graduating from St. Cecilia Cathedral High School in Omaha, Neb. After graduation, she remained in Omaha where she worked for one year. She then returned home to the Ottumwa area, where she lived and helped her parents.

Mary Ellen was united in marriage to Joseph H. Schofield on January 8, 1942, at Midland. After their marriage, they made their home on a ranch north of Manilla. They later moved back to the ranch where she was born, northeast of Ottumwa. They remained there until 1946, when they purchased her uncle's homestead, three miles east of Ottumwa, where they ranched and raised their children.

Her husband, Joe, preceded her in death on August 24, 1980. She continued to reside at the farm-ranch until moving into the Philip Nursing Home in July 2009. She was awarded the "Century Farm Award" at the South Dakota State Fair in August 2009.

She was a member of St. William Catholic Church and Church Altar Society of Midland, the Ottumwa School Board, and a longtime 4-H leader.

Survivors include three sons, Donald Schofield (Bobette) of Milesville, Lawrence Schofield (Ronda) of Midland, and Vince Schofield (Mary) of Midland; six daughters. Peggy Garoutte (Harry) of Boise, Idaho, Joanne Menning (Simon) of Ft. Pierre, Cecelia Kotilnek (Tom) of Pierre, Rita Anker (Monte) of Murdo, Debra Prouty (Joe) of Philip, and Mary Hengstler of Sundance, Wyo.; 30 grandchildren, Tyra Austin, Dawn Simons, Justin and Jeff Schofield, Lisa Jonas, Lynn Dunker, Tim, Joe, Jeff and Mike Jones, Kyle and Brett Schofield, Twyla Bestgen, Vicki Daly, Michael Schofield, Kimberly, Brian, Sheila, Clint, and Mark Menning, Gina Hickenbotham, Jason and Jon Kotilnek, Jennifer Pol, Josh Anker, Quentin and Cody Riggins, Erin Hovland, and Larry and Joe Hengstler; 50 great-grandchildren; five great-great-grandchildren; three sisters, Margaret Ann Whipple and Alice Peterson, both of Omaha, Neb., and Catherine Lullo (Carmen) of Gwinn, Mich.; and a host of other relatives and friends.

In addition to her husband Joe, Mary Ellen was preceded in death by an infant daughter; her parents; a son-in-law, Tim Riggins; two brothers, John and James Gillaspie; three infant sisters; and five infant great-grandchildren.

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, March 17, at St. William Catholic Church in Midland with Father Kevin Achbach as celebrant.

Music will be provided by Barb Petoske, pianist, and Barb Jones, vocalist. Ushers are Allen, Terry, Matt and Bob Schofield. Pallbearers are Justin, Kyle and Michael Schofield, Tim Jones, Brian Menning, Jason Kotilnek, Josh Anker, Quentin Riggins and Larry Hengstler.

Interment will be at the Midland Cemetery.

A memorial is established.

Arrangements are with the Rush Funeral Home of Philip. An online guestbook is available at www. rushfuneralhome.com