Esther Cornelius - May 23, 2011Esther Cornelius, 93, of Aurora, formerly of Phillips, died Monday, May 23, 2011, at Bryan/LGH West in Lincoln.
Funeral services will be held 10:30 a.m., Saturday, May 28, at the United Methodist Church in Phillips. Rev. Terry Otto will officiate. Burial will be in the Phillips Cemetery. Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at Higby-McQuiston Mortuary in Aurora. Condolences may be e-mailed to the family through the mortuary website at www.higbymortuary.com.
Esther Lucy Cornelius, daughter of Ralph Sidney and Ada (Keller) Dean, was born in Ashland, on Aug. 30, 1917.
She was raised in Ashland and graduated from Ashland High School in 1936. Esther then went on to attend the University of Nebraska for two years.
On May 12, 1940, she married Robert Cornelius. Two daughters were born to this union, Sharol and Jeanette. They lived in California during WW II and moved back to Nebraska in 1945. They lived in Phillips area until retiring in 1981. After retirement, they moved to Lake McConaughy for 15 years, and moved to Aurora in 1996. Bob passed away on April 18, 1998. Esther enjoyed living at East Park Villa since May 2004.
Esther was a member of the Phillips United Methodist Church and active in the Ladies Fellowship and also while near Ogallala at the Congregational Church. She was also active in Phillips O.E.S. Chapter 204 and was a Past Matron of the Order. Esther enjoyed working as a team with her husband. She enjoyed fishing and hunting with him too. Esther was the first woman to shoot a deer legally in Nebraska. In 1946, Nebraska held an organized deer hunt at Halsey Forest.
Survivors include her daughter, Sharol (Max) Reab of Santa Rosa, Calif.; six grandchildren, Michelle (Bryan) Dunbar, Michael (Rhonda) Reab and Mark Reab all of Santa Rosa, Calif. and Teresa (Jay) Otto of Omaha, Randy (Susan) Marlatt of Murdock and Robert (Laurel) Marlatt of Aurora and 11 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Robert and daughter, Jeanette Marlatt in 1996; her brother, Vernon Dean and two sisters, Lillian Bailey and Margaret Sorenson.