Wilma Katherine Vette, the daughter of Charles W. and Cora (Vette) Broermann, was born November 3, 1922, on the family farm outside of Westboro, Missouri. Wilma attended the North Polk country school and graduated in 1941 from high school in Rock Port, Missouri.
Wilma considered attending nursing school, but decided to stay home and farm with her father while her brothers, Harry and Donald, went to college. She took pride in her ability to “outpick” them both while harvesting corn by hand.
On February 2, 1947, Wilma and Ralph Vette eloped to Bendena, Kansas, to get married. Their witnesses were Maggie and Willis Kemper. They had no children, but were survived by many loving nieces and nephews.
Wilma and Ralph farmed the land they purchased from her dad, Charles, which lay two miles from St. John’s Lutheran Church. She lived her entire life within sight of St. John’s, until entering Tarkio Rehabilitation and Health Care in January 2015. She also loved to reminisce about the good old days of “shucking corn” and milking, by hand, eight Guernsey cows morning and night. She and Ralph were caretakers of St. John’s Cemetery for many years. She also sang in the choir her entire life.
Although naturally quiet and reserved, she was always eager to take part in St. John’s crazy skits, from a disguise in the Centennial Beard growing contest, to her “whitey tightys” in a parody of Bryan Ebert’s career as an underwear model. She was “married” to Donnie Laumann, as Johnny Cash, more times than June Carter.
She loved all animals, even the skunk that lived in her cellar, but especially her dog, Lollipop, who was with her for 16 years . . . lucky dog! She will be missed, but never forgotten. Wilma passed away Monday, January 20, 2020, at Tarkio Rehabilitation and Health Care at the age of 97.
Besides her parents, Wilma was preceded in death by husband, Ralph, of 43 years and her brothers, Harry and Donald.
A funeral service was held Saturday, January 25, 2020, at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Westboro. Interment was held at St. John’s Cemetery. Rev. Franz Brandenburg officiated. Services were under the direction of Davis Funeral Home, Tarkio, Missouri. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to St. John’s Lutheran Church or Tarkio Rehabilitation and Health Care. Online condolences may be left at www.minterfuneralchapels.com. Services were under the direction of Davis Funeral Home, Tarkio.