In Memory

Hilda (Russell)

Gerda "Hilda" Russell 
(July 11, 1922 - March 26, 2016) 

Mrs. Gerda “Hilda” Russell, 93, of Lebanon, passed away Mar. 26, 2016, at Witham Memorial Hospital. Gerda was born July 11, 1922 in Estonia, a daughter of the now late Fritz and Erna Wegewarth. She was married to Lewis “Sod” Russell. He preceded her in death.

It was during WWII when she was 16 that her family had to leave everything behind and run, never to return. Gerda eventually ended up back in Germany when it was occupied by the Americans and worked for the police headquarters for 10 years before following her sister to America. Gerda worked at the Thorntown Textile for several years and then spent six years working at Witham Hospital. After the death of her husband she went back to the hospital and continued working another 27 years retiring after the birth of her first grandson.

Gerda enjoyed sewing, crocheting, knitting and quilting. She was so proud of her grandsons and their families.

Survivors include her daughter Margaret (Robert) Beesley of Thorntown and son Pete Russell of Florida; grandsons Benjamin (Wendy) Beesley of Jamestown, Brandon (fiancé Amy) Beesley of Thorntown and Brayton Beesley of Thorntown; and great grandchildren Annastyn and Hudsen Beesley. Gerda was preceded in death by her parents, husband, a brother Erich Wegewarth and a sister Elsa Louks.

Family and friends will gather Tuesday, March 29, 2016 for visitation from 11 a.m. until time of services at 1 p.m. in the Thorntown Chapel of Strawmyer & Drury Mortuary, 100 S. Pearl Street (at the corner of Main and Pearl), Thorntown, IN 46071. Gerda will be laid to rest at Maple Lawn Cemetery in Thorntown. You are invited to visit the website where you may sign her online register and leave a personal message. Memorial contributions may be made to the Boone County Senior Services, 515 Crownpointe Dr., Lebanon, IN 46052