Funeral services for Norma Laberee will be held Thursday, March 14 at 11 a.m., at the United Methodist Church in Wagner, with Pastor Laurie Kidd, officiating. Interment is in the ZCBJ Cemetery, rural Wagner. Visitation will be the hour prior to services at the church. Crosby-Jaeger Funeral Home in Wagner is in charge of arrangements.
Norma Faye (Peshek) (Johnson) Laberee was born June 27, 1922 in Wagner to Flossie (Shoop) and Joseph Peshek. She died peacefully at the Good Samaritan Society in Tyndall on Thursday, March 7, 2019, at the age of 96.
While attending Wagner High School, Norma was recruited and selected as a telephone operator. She graduated from Wagner High School and attended the University of South Dakota. Norma married Russell Johnson June 3, 1943 in San Diego, CA. They were blessed with five children.
At the end of WWII, Russell joined the Army and became part of the occupational forces in Japan. Norma and her two sons boarded a ship and traveled across the ocean to meet Russell in Japan. Norma continued to use her telephone operating skills while in Japan where she helped coordinate communications between allied forces in Korea. When Russell left the Army, the family moved back to Wagner. Norma was busy raising their five children. After a few years, they purchased and managed Charlie's Cafe. They sold Charlie's and purchased Skogmo’s Clothing Store which Norma managed. In 1970, Russell passed away suddenly, Norma became a cancer survivor, moved back to Wagner.
Norma married Lyle Laberee March 22, 1978. Norma welcomedLyle'sdaughterElizabeth to their family. They lived in Lake Andes and wintered in Brownsville, TX. She loved to dance and dress up for costume parties, act in plays, write poems, golf and hunt for antelope, fish and play cards. Norma was an active member of VFW, Eastern Star and church. Her laugh was contagious, her smile lit up the room. She also loved to prepare big family dinners and make batches of strawberry rhubarb jam. Lyle passed away in 2004. Norma moved to Springfield, then later spent her final years in Tyndall.
Blessed to have shared in her life are her children: Jerry Johnson (Gwen) of Brownsville, TX, Sherry Barns (Steve) of Rapid City, Roy Johnson (Bobbi) of Mitchell, Gail Myers (Terry) of Springfield, Elizabeth DeCillis (Arthur) of Madison, CT; grandchildren: Nathan (Julie) Barns, Drew (Melissa) Barns, Brian (Lisa) Barns, Andrew (Ashley) Johnson, Leslie (Tim) Miller, Philip (Amanda) Johnson, Adam (Jess) Myers, Brett Myers (fiancee Charli), Mark DeCillis; 25 great-grandchildren and 8 great-great grandchildren.
Norma is preceded in death by husband Russell Johnson, husband Lyle Laberee, son Alan Johnson,siblings:Wiona(sister) and Stub Tillotson, Larry and Betty Peshek, and Robert and Delores Peshek.
Memorials will be directed to the Tyndall Good Samaritan Center Chapel Project.