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Avis Bristol

The Nebraska Signal

09 February 2000

Avis Gwendolyn Bristol was born to Bert A. and Geneva A. (Tschudy, current spelling Judy) Crowder on Dec.28, 1911, on the family farm southwest of Beaver Crossing. She passed away at the York General Hospital on Jan.21, 2000 at the age of 88 years, 24 days. She was the third of three children born in the family. An unnamed brother died Dec.12, 1907 at one week of age. A sister, Margaret Ellen, died Aug. 18, 1910 at 1 1/2 years of age.

Avis's childhood was saddened by her father's death when she was three years old. She often spoke of how she wished she could have known her father. She and her mother then lived with her aunt and uncle, Laura (Judy) and Adam Schneller, on a farm south of Waco. Avis attended one room country schools through 8th grade. Among the schools she attended were; Districts #28 and 101, which had the flowing well near Blue Vale, and District 7, where her mother was the teacher, all of which were in York County.

When talking about her childhood memories, she always got a gleam in her eye and a smile on her face telling about carrying her little red dinner pail and riding her pony "Dandy" to school. Swimming in the Blue River and playing softball were her summertime fun. Avis received her 9th and l0th grade education in Cordova, 11th and 12th grades at Exeter High School, graduating in 1929.

She earned her normal training certificate and taught in Districts 6 and 7 in York County. She attended summer sessions at Peru State and York Colleges while teaching.

Avis was united in marriage to Roy M. Bristol at the Waco Methodist Parsonage on May 19, 1935. To this union five sons were born. Avis and Roy began their married life on a farm near Charleston, southwest of York. In 1936, they moved to the Benedict area. On May 30, 1943 a drowning accident claimed the life of their third son, Robert Russell on his second birthday. In 1948, they moved southeast of Waco. Fifteen years later in 1963 the family purchased the Purington farm, also southeast of Waco, where they resided until Avis moved to the Hearthstone Nursing Home in York on July 6, 1999. On Aug.31, 1999 she was transferred to the Fairview Manor in Fairmont.

Life on the farm meant lots of hard work, but Avis was prepared. She dedicated her life to her family and to her faith in God. Avis became a member of the Bethel Evangelical United Brethren Church in 1934. She transferred her membership to the Methodist Church of Utica on 26, 1964. She was baptized in the First United Methodist Church of Utica on the 10th of April, 1977 by the Rev. Bonnie M. Gilmer. She has been a faithful church member all of her life. Avis found great pleasure in gardening, canning the fruits and vegetables she grew, and making fresh breads and homemade jellies.

When her family was raised, she enjoyed sewing for her grandchildren and later for her great grandchildren. Every Christmas her young grandchildren could expect and look forward to the flannel pajamas that were sewn by whom they affectionately referred to as "Grandma B." An expression of her love was the afghans she crocheted for each of her grand-children. Another one of her joys was to go quilting at the Methodist Church in Utica and to be with her friends. Avis worked at the Utica Nursing Home for several years in the 1980's when her mother was a resident there. She was a longtime member of the Exeter Rebecca Lodge.

Avis's great-grandparents were John S. and Mary A. (Hall) Anderson, who filed for the first homestead in York County on April 13, 1865. Roy and Avis enjoyed their retirement on the farm and have been lifetime residents of York County. They appreciated and enjoyed nature, feeding and watching the birds and growing beautiful flowers. They have celebrated 64 years of marriage together. Avis loved life and will be remembered as a kind and loving wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother.

Preceding her in death were her parents, Bert and Geneva; son, Robert, an unnamed infant brother, sister, Margaret; brothers-in-law, Walter Bristol and William Erks, and sisters-in-law, Betty Bristol and Helen Erks.

Left to cherish her memory is her husband, Roy; sons and their wives, David (Charlene) Bristol of Fairmont, Jerry (Linda) Bristol of Cordova, Norman (Monica) Bristol of Exeter and John (Winnie) Bristol of Fort Dodge, Iowa; 13 grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren; two brothers-in-law and their wives, Richard (Irma) Bristol of Aurora, and Milton (Iona) Bristol of Waco and sister-in-law, Floy Bristol of Stromsburg, along with many nieces, nephews, and a host of relatives and friends.

Funeral services were conducted from the Metz Mortuary Chapel in York at 2 p.m., Jan.25, 2000, with Pastor Kay Alnor Moyer of the Utica United Methodist Church officiating. Organist Julia Smithson accompanied Michael Bristol who sang "Amazing Grace" and "On Eagles Wings."

Casket bearers were her eight, grandsons, Don Bristol, Steven Bristol, Tom Bristol, Michael Bristol;, Ben Bristol, Keith Bristol, Nick Bristol and Christopher Bristol.

Honorary bearers were her five granddaughters, Debra Adelrnan, Lori Moore, Julie Bristol, Barb Koca and Deanna Bristol.

Internment was in the Greenwood. Cemetery at York with Metz Mortuary of York in charge of arrangements.

Memorials are directed to the Utica Methodist Church or to the family.



Thank you to our family and friends for all the kind expressions of sympathy including cards, food, flowers, visits, memorial gifts, phone calls, and prayers during the illness and:

loss of our loved one, Avis Bristol.