Nov. 9, 1907 - Oct. 27, 2011
McCOOK, Nebraska -- Dorothy Belle (Traphagan) Bortner died Thursday, Oct.27, 2011, at Community Hospital of McCook at the age of 103 years. She was born on November 9, 1907, in Frontier County, Nebraska, the daughter of Fred and Mattie (Simmerman) Traphagan. The family moved to a farm in Red Willow County, with Dorothy attending rural school in Red Willow County and later McCook High School.
On Dec. 23, 1924, Dorothy married William "Bill" Bortner. They made their home north of McCook in Frontier County, where they farmed and ranched. Dorothy enjoyed caring for her family and working hard, raising cattle, chickens and turkeys, and gardening, milking and other farm and ranch chores. In 1949, Bill and Dorothy moved to McCook while their son and his bride, Gernadine moved to the family ranch. Dorothy moved to Willow Ridge in 2003, and participated in numerous activities there.
Dorothy was a vivacious, fun-loving lady. She found joy through her many friends and neighbors. Dorothy loved to go out dancing on Saturday night, as well as enjoying an evening visiting with friends and family. She was especially close to her siblings throughout her life. Her family was her love. She was an amazing mother, grandmother and great grandmother. Dorothy's zest for life was apparent to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren who were always accommodated when asking Grandma to rock and read a story, play blocks on the floor, exercise and play games, go fishing at the creek or go horseback riding. She attended their events and activities, always making them feel special. She saw and experienced a lot throughout her 103 years, and taught her family about many things. She was an excellent gardener, cook and seamstress. Her crochet work, tatting, quilting and other needlework graces the homes of many of her beloved.
Dorothy was a member of the McCook Memorial United Methodist Church, the "Better Aims" Club and the B.P.OE. Does.
Survivors include son Gene Bortner of McCook, Nebraska, and three grandsons, Bill Bortner and wife, Carrol, Robert Bortner and wife, Barbara and Ben Bortner and wife, Ginny, all of McCook. She is survived by 11 great grandchildren: Bonnie Terry (Doug); Bret Bortner (Bobbi); Becky McIntosh (Eric); Brenda Whitten (Brad); Amy Brown (Nick); Heath Bortner (Jessica); Luke Bortner (Karen); Lori Ann Harding (Patrick); Jill Koenig (Carl); Wayne Bortner (Lisa); and Blaine Bortner, and 24 great great-grandchildren: Justin, Coy, Abee, and Quentin Terry; Cashous, Corinne, and Caden Bortner; Maxwell and Cooper McIntosh; Callie and Adelyn Whitten; Elizabeth, Austin and Grace Adam and Ashton Brown; Ethan "Charlie" Bortner; Layten and Paige Bortner; Becca, Addison and Lance Koenig; and Kyler, Riley and Zoey Bortner. Dorothy is survived by 3 of her siblings, sisters, Verna Mackey and Fay Korell, and one brother, Elwood (Irene) Traphagan, all of McCook; many nieces and nephews.
Preceding her in death were her husband of 69 years, William "Bill" Bortner; her daughter-in-law, Gernadine (Schlegel) Bortner; parents Fred and Mattie Traphagan; and brothers Marvin and Henry "Hank" Traphagan, and seven sister-in-laws, 10 brother-in-laws, her father-in-law, H. J. Bortner, and mother-in-law, Viola (Franz) Bortner.
Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m. Monday, Oct. 31, 2011, at the Memorial United Methodist Church in McCook with the Rev. Lance Clay officiating. Interment will be in Memorial Park Cemetery in McCook.
Visitation will be today through Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, at Herrmann Funeral Home in McCook.