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Velma Lohmann - March 11, 2009


Velma Anita Lohmann, age 82, of Holyoke, died March 11, 2009.
She was born at the farm home of her parents, Emil and Verna (Smith) Lohmann near Frankfort, Kan. July 8, 1926. She was baptized in the United Methodist Church at Vliets, Kan. and has continued to be a member of that denomination in the churches at Haxtun and Holyoke.
Velma began school at a two-teacher school at Vliets, and then moved to Haxtun in 1935. She completed her education there, graduating from high school in 1944. Velma had a happy childhood with her three sisters, Dorothy, Kelma and Ruth.
During the depression years money was scarce, so entertainment consisted of the neighborhood children playing games in the Lohmann yard, substituting toys with corn cob dolls, a playhouse made with string, and paper dolls cut from catalogs. Evenings were often spent with the sisters sitting around a table with their mother reading to them or playing games.
Velma had a love for learning and spent many hours reading and working on her studies. She excelled in business classes and received recognition on her accomplishments.
Special teaching certificates were issued to high school graduates because of a shortage of teachers during World War II. She began furthering her education by taking correspondence and extension classes and attending summer school, graduating from Colorado Teachers’ College (UNC) in Greeley, with a B.A. degree in elementary education.
Velma and her twin sister Kelma began teaching in rural and consolidated schools in Yuma and Phillips counties. They began teaching at Holyoke Elementary School in 1963, retiring in 1982. Of the 38 years of teaching, Kelma and Velma taught in the same school except for their first seven years.
Honors received were “Teacher of the Year” award by the local education association, receiving honorable mention at the state level; Woman of the Year selected by Holyoke Business and Professional Women’s Club; Colorado Rural Teacher of the Year; AARP Volunteer of the Year; and Woman of the Year of Beta Sigma Phi. These honors were shared by her sister Kelma.
Velma was active in the United Methodist Church and AARP. She enjoyed doing for others, tutoring, gardening, family and friends.
Velma’s twin sister died in 1998 leaving a void in her life, but she continued being active, following Kelma’s last request, “I want you to keep on having fun and to be happy.”
Velma was preceded in death by her parents, sister Ruth Sloan, her beloved twin Kelma Lohmann, sister Dorothy Hector and brother-in-law Robert Hector.
Velma is survived by her three nephews, Rick Hector of Lakewood and friend Clair Chacon of Littleton; Doug Hector, wife Tammy and daughter Lauren of Fort Morgan; and Duane Hector and Josie, Taylor and Austin of Sterling; brother-in-law Howard Sloan and wife Lucille of Sterling; cousins Lauri Gibbs and family and Steve and Pam Salvador and family; and many loving and caring friends including Ann and Vern Rafert, Mary Kay and Merl Davidson, Charlene Kropp, Virginia Mosenteen, Marj and Gerald Brewer, Iona Bartlett and Junior Lueking, Virginia Morris, Michael and Debra Dusenbury-Dorren, Ruby Roll, Marjorie Roberts, Bill and Barbara Holcomb and family, Jim and Glenda Reynolds and family, Charlette Jenkins, Marilyn and Dan Paxton, Gerry and Vicki Reynolds, Alice Johnson and Jen Gilland and other friends too numerous to mention.
Funeral service was Saturday, March 14 at Haxtun United Methodist Church, with Pastor Keith Hudiburgh officiating. Interment followed at the Haxtun Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to Haxtun United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 145, Haxtun, CO 80731 or Melissa Memorial Hospital, Cardiac Rehab, 1001 E. Johnson St., Holyoke, CO 80734.
Gerk Funeral Home was entrusted with the arrangements.