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Eileen Rudder - July 22, 2011

Eileen Dorothea Eichel Rudder was born Dec. 6, 1909 at Union, Neb., the youngest of 11 children born to Henry and Maria Theresa (Johnke) Eichel. She died in Holyoke on July 22, 2011 at the age of 101. She was the oldest consecutive living resident of Holyoke, having lived in the Holyoke area since 1911.

In 1911, the Eichel family moved to a farm located 15 miles southwest of Holyoke. Eileen started first grade at Lakeside School. She attended and graduated from the eighth grade at North Star School and attended Phillips County High School.

On Oct. 26, 1928, she married Earl Rudder at the Methodist Church on 18th and Broadway in Denver. To this union, two children were born: a son, Earl Junior in 1933 and a daughter, Gwen Ellen in 1940.

Eileen worked as a waitress for several years and later became bookkeeper for several businesses. She kept books and was a clerk and cosmetologist for the Holyoke Drug Store. She was also an operator and secretary/treasurer for the Phillips County Telephone office. Eileen also worked for nearly eight years as a feed grain clerk at the local ASCS office.

Eileen was a 50-year member of the Holyoke Rebekah Lodge, serving in all offices including president.

She was a dedicated member of American Legion Auxiliary Post #90 for 35 years, serving in all offices. She was especially honored to be president of the Auxiliary for two years, serving at the same time that her son, Earl, was Commander of American Legion Post #90, which was a great honor. She also served as chairman of the banquet committee for many years and took great pride in serving delicious meals for many, many banquets.

She was also a member of the Business and Professional Women’s Club for a number of years, a member of AARP and a member of First United Methodist Church in Holyoke.

She had many hobbies, including crocheting, working crossword puzzles, piecing quilts, gardening, playing solitaire, her beautiful flowers and traveling. Earl and Eileen were fortunate to have traveled to many places while their son was in the Navy.

In 1991, Eileen and her family coordinated the first-ever Eichel reunion and attended several reunions throughout the United States thereafter.

She was a wonderful, giving lady with a huge heart and would do anything for her friends and family.

Eileen was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Earl; her son, Earl Jr.; her 10 brothers and sisters, George Martin, Mary Kathryn, twin brothers who died at birth, Henry Nicholas, Carl Ernst, another brother who died at birth, Earl Harold, Pearl Louisa and Anna Margeurite; brothers- and sisters-in-law; two sons-in-law, Mickey Kramer and Bill Triplette; and many nephews and nieces.

She is survived by her daughter, Gwen Kramer Triplette; granddaughters, Rebecca Oliver and husband Randy of Holyoke and Julie Tonsing and husband Mark of Merino; great-grandchildren, Ryan Oliver and wife Jessica of Holyoke and Gentry Oliver of Saratoga, Wyo. She is also survived by her pride and joy, her great-great-granddaughters, Addison Marie and Paige Anne of Holyoke; 10 step-grandchildren, Graeme Smith and wife Dolly of Holyoke, Glennis and husband John and Brian Smith of Christchurch, New Zealand, Terri Ann and husband Bob, Richard and wife Connie, Darrell and Randy, Gloria and husband Larry, Beverly and husband Chris, Billy Joe and wife Jennie and Asa and wife Melinda, all of Lincoln, Neb.; many step-great- and step-great-great-grandchildren; many nieces, nephews and cousins; and special caregiver, Jeanette O’Connell.

Services were held July 26 at the First United Methodist Church of Holyoke.

Baucke Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.