Obituary of Elwin Carl Bergstraesser
The Reverend Elwin Carl Bergstraesser, 93, departed this life on Friday, October 22, 2021 at the Lindsborg Community Hospital in Lindsborg, KS. Elwin was born on October 11, 1928 in Quinter, KS to Rev. Carl and Rose (Grabenstein) Bergstraesser. Elwin graduated from Greeley High School in Greeley, Colorado, from Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa, and from Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa. He spent 67 years as a Lutheran Pastor in the American Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He served parishes in Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Colorado and Oklahoma, including positions as Campus Pastor at former Dana College in Blair, NE from 1968-1972 and as the Executive Director of Oaks Indian Mission in Oaks, OK from 1977-1986. He also spent a short time as a lecturer and teacher at Paulinum Seminary in Namibia. He was the eighth generation of ordained clergy in his family line. In 1955, he married Leona Dietz at Immanuel Lutheran Church in WaKeeney, KS. This union was blessed with three daughters: Anne, Jean and Gail. Leona passed away in 1993. In 1995, Elwin married Rev. Evelyn (Weberg) Phillips at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Lawrence, KS and became a step-father to son Robert and to daughter Allison. Elwin is survived by his wife Evelyn M. Phillips of Lindsborg, KS; children: Anne Bergstraesser of Wichita, KS; Jean (Jeff) Lilley of Honolulu, HI; Gail (Sidney) Flack of Tulsa, OK; step-children: Robert J. Phillips of Salina, KS; Allison Koerner-Smith of Topeka, KS; grandchildren: John (Clare) Flack; Miriam (Jose) Zambrano; Meghann (Charlie) Murray; Seth Lilley; step-grandchildren: Cameron (Maria) Smith; Abigail Smith; great grandchildren: Alex, Duke, and James Zambrano, Lucy and Frances Flack, Franklin Murray; sister, Myra Bamler of Furth, Germany; sisters-in-law: Dorothy Bergstraesser, Rose Doxon, Marilyn Hudson, Verda Dietz, Ginny Haggar; brothers-in-law: Phillip Weberg, Michael Haggar; along with nieces, nephews, cousins, other family members, friends, and sponsored college students from Zimbabwe. Elwin was preceded in death by his parents, wife Leona, brother Lyle; brothers-in-law: Rev. Heiner Bamler, Wilfred Dietz, Jim Hudson, Vernon Dietz, Dean Doxon, Donald Weberg; sisters-in-law: Lana Weberg, Brenda Weberg, Nina Dietz; father-in-law, Earl Weberg and wife Geraldine; step-father John Meyer; parents-in-law Fred W. and Mary E. (Fabrizius) Dietz; three nephews; grandparents; aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. Burial took place at Zion Lutheran Cemetery in Trego Center, KS on October 25, 2021, with Pastor Christopher Deines, officiating. Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be held at Bethany Evangelical Lutheran Church, 320 N. Main Street in Lindsborg, KS at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 23, 2022. In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to Oaks Indian Mission, P.O. Box 130, Oaks, OK 74359 or on their website: www.oaksindianmission.org.
Saturday, April 23, 2022
Bethany Lutheran Church
320 N. Main St.
Lindsborg, Kansas, United States
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