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Nina Schnell, 90 - July 02, 2012


Nina Gail Day Schnell, 90, formerly of Jeffrey Lake, passed away Monday, July 2, 2012, at North Platte.
Services took place on Saturday, July 7, at the Calvary Baptist Church in North Platte with the Rev. Ryan Alexander officiating.
Schnell was born Jan. 12, 1922, to Omar and Sarah Day at their sod farm house near Ruleton, KS, during a fierce blizzard. She grew up during the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl, and began her formal education in a one-room country school.
She attended high school at Goodland, KS, where she met Dennis Schnell. The couple were married on Aug. 20, 1939, and were together for 62 years until his death on Oct. 9, 2001.
During those years, she and her husband moved several times as they farmed and built and operated the Silver Leaf Motel in Culbertson. They eventually bought land in Wellfleet and worked together to build their dream, said family members. Schnell also worked as a secretary, and later, as a phone operator for the Union Pacific Railroad.
After retirement, she and her husband moved to a home overlooking Jeffrey Lake and the Platte Valley. She bought a ski boat and their children and grandchildren learned to ski. The whole family loved to spend time there fishing, canoeing, swimming, playing pool and sledding, according to family members. After 10 years, her husband’s health forced the couple to move back to town.
Following her husband’s death, she moved to Oak Manor and became very active with social events there and at the Senior Center. She also volunteered to help kindergartners and first graders in local schools learn to read.
Schnell was always an active member of churches wherever she lived, including Wellfleet Methodist, Banner Methodist, and most recently Calvary Baptist in North Platte.
She was preceded in death by: her parents, Omar and Sarah; her husband, Dennis; a brother, Marvin Day; sisters—Naomi Thompson and Burnetta Petersen; a grandson, Chris Strohfus.
Survivors include: her four children—Larry (Marilyn) Schnell of North Platte, Linda Strohfus of Brandon, FL, Cheryl (Bob) Wheeler of Ventura, CA, and Gary Schnell of Tempe, AZ; 11 grandchildren and great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews.
Memorials are suggested to Calvary Baptist Church and the North Platte Senior Center.

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