MINDEN, Nebraska -- Nila "Fern" Powell age 92, formerly of Cambridge, died at the Bethany Home Nursing home in Minden, Saturday (Aug. 13, 2011).
She was born March 18, 1919, in Holbrook, Nebraska, to Clarence and Iva (Henry) Robesun. She graduated from Holbrook High School in 1937. She moved to California, where she worked for Lockheed Douglas Aviation. In 1939 Fern married Ralph Freeborn, Sr. To this union two sons were born, Ralph Jr. (Bob) and Gary Freeborn.
In 1945, Fern returned to Nebraska and married John "Jack" Powell. Jack preceded her in death on June 7, 1987. They made their home north of Cambridge. In 1948, Catherine was born.
Fern worked as a nurse's aide at the Cambridge Hospital and Minnick's Rest Home for many years, always caring for others. She also spent many years cleaning the Twin Valley REA building in Cambridge.
Fern loved to garden and can fruits and vegetables. She volunteered for the American Red Cross blood mobiles. She was active in the American Legion Auxiliary and St. John the Baptist Catholic Church Altar Society.
In 2000, Fern moved to Minden to be closer to her family. As her health declined she moved into the Bethany Home nursing home in Minden.
She was preceeded in death by her parents; husband, John "Jack;" a son, Gary; one brother and two sisters; and her beloved cat Bootie.
Survivors include her son, Ralph Jr. "Bob" and wife, Lupe Freeborn of Sylmar, California; daughter Cathy and husband, Richard Pesek of Minden, Nebraska; five grandchildren, Debra Freeborn of Moorpark, California, John and wife, Kathy Freeborn of Hunting Beach, California, Carrie Tye of York, Nebraska, Colleen and husband, Paul Jensen of Minden, Nebraska, Jenny and husband, Tim Bell of Kearney, Nebraska; and five great-grandchildren.
Rosary will be recited at the Lockenour-Jones Mortuary on Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2011, at 7:30 p.m.
Mass of Christian Burial will be on Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2011, 10:30 a.m., at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Cambridge, Nebraska, with Father Robert Barnhill officiating.
Visitation will be Tuesday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Interment will be in the Fort McPherson National Cemetery at Maxwell, Nebraska, 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2011.
Memorials may be left in her name to either the Asra Care Hospice or the Bethany Home. Friends may leave online condolences at www.lockenour.com.
Lockenour-Jones Mortuary of Cambridge is in charge of the arrangements.