Chalene Smith, 54

smith obit

Chalene “Cheri” (Dubel) Smith, age 54 of Gillette, Wyo., passed away from an ongoing battle with breast cancer on Friday, Jan. 23,  at Close to Home Hospice House in Gillette, Wyo. Chalene (Dubel) Smith was born on Aug. 17, 1960 in Winner, to James and Norma Dubel. She graduated from Casper College with a degree in computer programming. Upon completing college she moved to Gillette, and accepted a position as a computer programmer with the Campbell County  in Gillette where she worked for more than 10 years. She also worked for coal mines in the area, she worked a short time for the post office, 5 years at Razor’s Edge, an office position for P&H Mining, she also worked for Flightline and other various jobs, and finally at Global Heat Transfer for a couple years. Cheri had a superior work ethic.

She married Kurt Smith on September 16, 1989. He was the love of her life, and her broken heart was never the same after his departure to heaven. The couple had numerous dogs over the years which were like their children. She took pride in her customer service and showing her younger peers a good work ethic; and how to work with values and integrity. She always strived to make her employer a success. She loved walking her dog Lexi;  who is missing her. Cheri is survived by her sister; Becky (Brian) Kjensmo of Park City, MT, brothers; James (Nancy) Dubel and Larry Dubel  of Gillette, WY, aunt; Maxine Harter of Sturgis, SD, niece; Amanda (Chad) Herman of Gillette,WY, nephews; Zachary Dubel of Douglas, WY, Chris Dubel and Zackery Stevens of Gillette, WY, along with numerous cousins, great-nephews and a great-niece. She is preceded in death by her husband; Kurt Smith, her parents; James and Norma Dubel, cousin; Tim Harter of Michigan and grandparents.  The family welcomes all to attend the service and celebrate Cheri’s life. to thank Close to Home Hospice and their staff for all of the help, caring, and understanding. Donations may be made in Cheri’s name to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Memorials and condolences may also be sent in the families name to Gillette Memorial Chapel 210 West 5th Street, Gillette, WY 82716 or via website:

Arthur (Art) Zimbelmann, 85

Art ZArthur (Art) Zimbelmann was born July 26, 1929 on the family ranch near Hamill, the second child of seven to Henry and Clara (Korb) Zimbelmann. Art grew up on the ranch learning to work with cattle and ride horses. He developed a love of hunting and fishing during these growing up years.

Art went to the country school right behind their ranch until he finished the eighth grade. He worked on the ranch with his dad until he was called into service during the Korean War. Art proudly served his country in the Army from 1952 to 1954. It was only recently that Art talked about his time in the Tank Company of the 223rd Infantry. Art came back to work the ranch after his honorable discharge in January of 1954.

Art met Joan Fischer at a dance and on June 28, 1958 they were married. They had three boys: Arvis, Arden, and Gary.

Bernard Lee Baxa, 60

bernie baxa obit

Bernard Lee Baxa  passed away on Wednesday, January 28th, 2015 at Avera Gregory Hospital at the age of 80 years old.

Funeral services were held on Feb. 3 at the Burke Civic Center. Burial was in the Herrick Cemetery.

He was born on September 23rd, 1934 in Dixon, SD in the farmhouse of his parents John and Nettie (Konop) Baxa. He has two older siblings, Ruby (Baxa) Stevicks and Duane Baxa. Bernie went to school in St. Charles, SD until his sophomore year and then finished high school in Burke, graduating in 1952. After graduating, Bernie worked on the family farm and also did custom farm work for other famers in the area. Bernie was baptized, confirmed, and became a member of The Herrick Lutheran Church.

On May 14, 1954 Bernie married his beautiful bride of 60 years,   Marilyn Tietgen. Together they had six children: Janet (Steve  Bailey) of Bonesteel, SD; Dan (Cheryl) of Herrick, SD; John (Linda) of Hohnville, LA; James (Sue) of Canistota, SD; Julie (Bruce Otto) of Canistota, SD; Jolene (Mark Ward) of Spring Creek, NV.

In 1958 Bernie started working for Gustinson Construction building bridges. In 1960 Bernie and Marilyn moved to Herrick from their farm south of town. They bought “Todd’s Recreation” in 1973, now known as Bernie’s Inn. Bernie always took pride in working hard to provide for his family.

Gaye Hambek, 73

gaye hambek obit


Gaye Hambek  was born on July 18, 1941 south of Colome, SD in her grandparent’s home. She was born the oldest of three girls to Carl and Rita (Amick) Stroschine.

Funeral services were held at 10 a.m. Tuesday, January 13 at Grace Fellowship Church in Spearfish.  Interment followed at Rosehill Cemetery.  In lieu of flowers, memorials have been established to benefit the Spearfish Ambulance Service and Northern Hills Relay for Life.

Mervin John Higgins, 85

higgins obit

Mervin John Higgins was born July 20, 1929 to John and Ada (Brown) Higgins at Brocksburg, Nebraska.  He died January, 20, 2015 at the Gregory Community Hospital at the age of 85 years.

Funeral services were held Jan. 23 at Saints Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Butte, Neb with Father Andrzej Wyrostek officiating. Burial was in the Catholic Cemetery at Naper.