Irma Sophie Smith, age 92, of Waconia, passed away Wednesday, Dec. 10, 2014, at the Ridgeview Medical Center in Waconia.
Irma was born Sept. 9, 1922, in Winsted Township, rural Lester Prairie, the daughter of Conrad and Elsie (Tonn) Machemehl. She was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Lester Prairie.
Irma was the valedictorian of her graduating class of Lester Prairie High School.
After high school, she began working for her grandfather, Wilhelm Machemehl, in his insurance agency.
Irma was united in marriage to Ardin Gutzmann March 7, 1943. The couple made their home on the Gutzmann family farm near Winsted.
After the death of her husband, Ardin, May 25, 1952, Irma, along with her two sons, moved in with her parents in Hutchinson.
She was married to Earl “Bill” Smith June 1, 1957. The couple lived in Benson, where Irma worked as a bookkeeper at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, and as a secretary for Tyler Manufacturing.
In 1998, the couple moved to Plymouth. After Bill’s death in October of 2003, Irma moved to Waconia to be closer to family.
A generous and caring person, Irma volunteered at every opportunity. She enjoyed knitting prayer shawls to be donated, and volunteering at the Women’s Center at the Ridgeview Medical Center. A very active member of her church, she attended many Bible Studies and helped out wherever needed.
The motto Irma lived by was “Bloom where you are planted.” Her loving and social nature will be missed.
In addition to her husbands, Irma was preceded in death by her parents, Conrad and Elsie Machemehl; brothers Louis Machemehl, and Earl Machemehl and his wife, Betty; and brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Wallace Dibb, Wayne and Ruth Gutzmann, and Rodney Gutzmann.
She is survived by her loving family: children the Rev. Steven (Linda) Gutzman of Medical Lake, WA, Jon “Jack” Gutzmann of Eagan, and Jane Bebar of Vista, CA; grandchildren Sarah (Joel) Ertsgaard, Dan (Ann) Gutzman, Lisa (Craig) Allen, Jessica (Brian) Volkmann, Jocelyn Gutzmann, and Koji Suga Gutzmann; and great-grandchildren Erik and Anna Ertsgaard, Grace, Sophie and Jack Allen, and Emerson Volkmann.
Irma is further survived by a sister, Shirley Dibb of Lester Prairie; brother Ralph (Donna) Machemehl of Lester Prairie; sisters-in-law Marvanna Machemehl of Waconia, and Carol Ann Gutzmann of Winsted; other relatives, and many friends.
A memorial service took place Saturday, Dec. 13 at 1 p.m. at Faith Lutheran Church in Waconia with the Rev. Dale Peterson officiating. Interment was in the Winsted Public Cemetery. There was a gathering of family and friends one hour prior to the service at the church.
Arrangements were by the Johnson Funeral Home in Waconia.