Elsie Marie (Combellick) Bartels

August 1, 2022Obituaries
Elsie Marie (Combellick) Bartels

Elsie Marie (Combellick) Bartels was born on July 2, 1927, to Benjamin and Marina (Mode) Combellick, of Gettysburg, South Dakota. She was the 7th of 8 children.

Elsie married Bruce Bartels of Lebanon, SD, on October 10, 1948. They were married 63 years until Bruce’s death in 2011.

They resided around the Gettysburg area until 1968, when they moved to Lead, SD. In 1984, they bought their place outside of Newell.

When Elsie was 40 years old, she found “God”. No, God found her. When she was in a desperate spot the only person who came to her aid was the Lutheran Pastor. She had never met him or been in the church. Her life changed. She was baptized and took confirmation classes. She became a member of the church, had her daughters baptized. She has always been grateful. She became very involved with every church she has been in. Church to her was a necessity, not a want. If she missed church on Sunday, she said her whole week was screwed up.

Elsie was very proud of her grandfather, William Combellick, who held several patents for hog feeders and other things. He also was one of the founding fathers of Gettysburg. All of the men fought at the Battle of Gettysburg. Thus, giving the town its name.

Elsie always made do with what she had. She was legally blind but that didn’t stop her. When the grandchildren started appearing she didn’t have money for store bought gifts. So, she sewed clothes, quilts, toys, etc. The grandkids loved everything and couldn’t wait till the next year to see what she made. Her great-grandchildren are now playing with the toys.

Elsie Marie Bartels, 95, of Newell, SD, died on July 29, 2022, at the Spearfish Canyon Health Center.

Elsie is survived by sons, Richard (Emma), and Barry of Newell, and Wes of Rapid City; daughters, Rena Whalen of Rapid City, and Susan Pickett of Vale; 13 grandchildren, 26 great-grandchildren, and 2 great-great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Bruce; grandson, Shawn Bartels; granddaughter, Kerry Bartels; sons-in-law, Jim Whalen, and Randy Pickett.

A memorial service will be 1:00 pm. on Wednesday, August 3, 2022, at St. James Lutheran Church, Belle Fourche, SD. Burial will be at a later date at Black Hills National Cemetery.