Ramona Hultman, 93, of Sturgis, SD, passed away peacefully on December 20, 2023.
Clara Ramona Hultman was born March 19,1930 to Abraham and Mary (Evenstad) Nelson in Nashua, Montana.
Ramona’s childhood years were spent living and working on the family farm in the Turtle Mountains of North Dakota, a place she held dear in her heart for all her 93 years. Though farm life was hard as was the loss of her mother at an early age, Ramona carried fond memories of the people and places that framed who she was. She found comfort in those memories of the Turtle Mountains until the end.
Ramona was mature and practical beyond her years and always took it upon herself to care for others. When she was only 16, she became concerned about the health of her 9-year-old sister, Vonnie. Ramona determined Vonnie wasn’t getting the medical care she needed, so she talked a teenage male friend w ho had a car into driving her and Vonnie to the Children’s Hospital in Minot. Because of Ramona’s tenacity, practicality, and courage, Vonnie received the months of treatment she required for rheumatic fever.
It was only natural that Ramona would be educated at Columbian Nursing School, Great Falls, Montana, in 1951 to become a nurse.
It was Ramona’s nursing degree that led her to a nursing position at the Fort Meade Veterans Hospital, and it was at Fort Meade that she met the love of her life, Neil Hultman. Neil was an Indian motorcycle riding Korean War veteran lucky enough to capture the eye of the tall, lanky, beautiful Norwegian girl from up north. Ramona and Neil not only worked at Fort Meade until they both retired, but also were wed on the grounds on September 5, 1954, and lived and raised their four children there.
Ramona was known for being productive. She loved being outdoors and knew where every transplanted flower, tree, and bush on their Boulder Canyon property came from. Working in the dirt and just being outdoors was one of her favorite pastimes. Many of her grandchildren’s favorite memories include adventures with her outside in the forest and along the creek bed.
Ramona was also a volunteer – making potato salad for everyone who attended the Rally in the early days, spending hours at the Fort Meade Museum cataloging items and doing the books, sewing quilts with the ladies at Grace Lutheran Church, and shopping for and donating to her favorite worthy causes.
Ramona was a woman of intelligence, independence, and strength. She left home at 13 to live with relatives and finish high school in Montana, often travelling alone by train from North Dakota to Glasgow. She took flying lessons in her teens with dreams of being a pilot. Ramona earned her hospital nurse diploma in her 20’s, and returned to college in her 50’s to complete her 4-year degree. As a young nurse, she helped pay for two of her sisters’ high school education. At the end of her career when she and Neil had moved to their dream home in Boulder Canyon, many a night she would snowshoe the last half mile to their cabin by the light of the moon after completing her swing shift.
Ramona spent her final two years in the care of the wonderful staff at the Masa and Barry units at the Monument Nursing Home in Sturgis. She believed she was the charge nurse to the very end, still checked on other patients, offered suggestions on how to run things, and found joy in the belief that she was still providing nursing services to others.
Ramona was proceeded in death by her parents and step-mother Alma Tonneson Nelson, and siblings: Evelyn Kriz, Carlyle Nelson, LaVonne Shelton, and Lauretta Mundy.
She is survived by her husband of 69 years, Neil Hultman, Sturgis; sister, EdnaMae (Harvey) Olufson-Smith; children, Cheri Hultman, Sturgis, Rick Hultman, Sturgis, Brian (Marcia) Hultman, Pierre, Greg Hultman, Sturgis, and grandsons: Riley Hultman, Fort Collins, CO and Brody Hultman, Minneapolis, MN.
Memorial services will be Saturday, December 23, 2023, 11:00 a.m., Grace Lutheran Church, Sturgis, SD, with visitation one hour prior. Burial will be at a later date.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.kinkadefunerals.com.