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Carmen Jean (Schroeder) Pexa

Carmen Jean (Schroeder) Pexa
Carmen Jean (Schroeder) Pexa
- November 21, 2017

Carmen Jean (Schroeder) Pexa, 72, passed away November 20, 2017 at Rapid City Regional Hospital in Rapid City, SD, surrounded by her loving family.

In 1945, a sweet little girl was born in Stutsman County near Cleveland, ND to Amelia Schock and John Schroeder. Carmen received her first eleven years of education in Cleveland and Medina, ND, and graduated from Ft. Pierre High School in SD in 1963. She married the love of her life, Wade Pexa, on December 28, 1963 in Ft. Pierre, SD and they would be together for the next 54 years. They were blessed with a son, Wade Jon Pexa, and a daughter, Stephanie Lee Pexa.

The young couple moved to Rapid City in November of 1965 and bought a house on Fairmont Blvd. Carmen went to work for Child Welfare while carrying a small child in each arm. Later, they purchased their first motel in Rapid City, where Wade and Carmen worked beside each other as a team. They owned and operated very successful motel businesses. After the devastation of the Rapid City flood in 1972, they lost their motel and almost their lives. Their survival led to a legacy of sixteen family members, including six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. After much hard work, they decided it was time to sell their motels and retire to enjoy more time with their family and growing grandchildren. Together they traveled extensively, both domestic and internationally, and have enjoyed spending their winters in Arizona and summers in Rapid City, where they have made many lasting friends.

Carmen developed her sewing skills and has passed the art of quilting and embroidery to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Carmen lived the role of a homemaker, cooking delicious meals and having a tidy and orderly home. Their neighbors were special and were always welcomed with open doors, with something freshly baked, even after becoming so ill.

Carmen was deeply loved and will be so missed by her family and friends. She will be remembered for the kind person she truly was; her beautiful warm voice, smiles, and laughter. If Carmen could speak, she would say, “All I ask is that you remember me loving you.”

Carmen is survived by her husband, Wade Pexa; son, Wade Jon (Rita) Pexa, daughter, Stephanie (Curt) Strong, grandchildren: Samuel (Dagnery) Steele, Christina (Frank) Lusher, Jennifer (Kelly) Aldren, Shannon Steele, and Zachary Pexa; great-grandchildren: Kaydence Aldren, Owen Aldren, Brennan Aldren, Claire Aldren, Chance Lusher, Austin Lusher, Matthew Lusher, and Taylor Lusher; step-grandchildren: Darrell (Shay) Strong, Tiffany (Jacob) Knudsen and Dillon Strong; step-great-grandchildren: Hailey Knudsen, Harper Knudsen and Stella Strong; four siblings: Lillian (Don) Hofmann, Sharon (Leslie) Knorr, Gary (Jill) Schroeder, Marilyn Ontiveros; brother-in-law, Jim Smith; sister-in-law, Elaine Schroeder (Schraeder) and many loving nieces and nephews.

She was proceeded in death by her parents, Amelia and John Schroeder; three brothers: Myron, Edwin and Kenneth Schroeder; two sisters: Norma Hauge and Donna Smith; granddaughter Isabella Pexa (Broom); brother-in-law’s: James Hauge and Phil Ontiveros and two nieces: Crystal and Dawn Schroeder.

Carmen will be inurned at Black Hills National Cemetery at 11:00 am on Wednesday, November 22, 2017. The family would like to invite everyone to a luncheon at 12:30 pm at the Construction Industry Center (CIC), 2771 Plant Street, Rapid City for a time of food and fellowship.

A memorial service will be held in June 2018 for all family and friends.  In lieu of flowers, please donate to your favorite charity in Carmen’s name.

Friends and family may sign Carmen’s online guestbook and leave written condolences for the family at blackhillsfuneralhome.com.


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Address: 1612 Junction Avenue, Suite #1
Sturgis, SD 57785