Yuma County, Colorado

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Yuma County Pioneers

Forrest and Lucille (McCleary) Merrill, Alvin

Forrest Ray Merrill was born at Kellerton, Iowa May 22, 1892.

Lucille was born April 6, 1889 at Bloomington township to Wm. G. McCleary and Arminta M. Maks, christed at Decatur, Iowa.
(William was born 1854 in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and is in the 1860 and 1870 Adams County, census, so he would have proabably witnessed the 1863 battle.)

In 1910 Brown County, South Dakota, she's a music teacher 21, with William 55 and Araminta 44. sister Esther is 16.

Alfred L. Merrill was born April 25, 1895 in Athens township, Ringgold County, Iowa to Sam Merrill and Sadie Merritt.

In 1900 Ringgold County, Iowa, Samuel Merrill born Nov 1863 in Missouri, Sadie M. June 1870 Iowa, Forest R. May 1892, and Alfred L. April 1895, both born in Iowa. They're next to John W. Merriill Nov 1858 Illinois, Mary B. Feb 1863 West Virginia, Frank S. january 1884, Elva March 1889, Mabel S. October 1891, and Sarah B. June 1894, all kids born in Iowa.

In 1910 Ringgold County, Iowa, Samuel N. "Merrell" is 46, born in Missouri, Sadie M. 39 Iowa, Forest R. 17 Iowa, and Alfred L. 14 Iowa.
Forrest R. Merrill and Millie L. McCleary, both of Aberdeen, South Dakota, married there September 24, 1910.

Forrest registered for WWI in Kellerton, Iowa, farming, with a wife and two children.

Phyllis Maxine Merill, 1916-1919 is buried in Merritt Cemetery, Ringgold County, # 13443554.

In 1920 Yuma County, Forrest R. Merrill is farming 29, with Lucile M. 30, Maynard 7, and Esther Ray 2, all born in Iowa.
Forrest proved up 320 acres in sections 10, 14, and 15, and stock-claimed another 320 acres in sections 10 and 11, 4N 44W in 1924.

This land was next to the Merritt/Hilfiker land.

"Joseph Franklin MERRITT born 25 Jan 1859, IA; died 06 Sep 1920, Ringgold Co. IA, interred Maple Row Cemetery, Kellerton IA married Sarah Elizabeth "Sadie" MERRILL 18 Sep 1883, Ringgold Co. IA born 24 Feb 1867, Ringgold Co. IA; died 13 Feb 1953, Leon, Decatur Co. IA "
When John William Merrill 1858-1926 died in Ringgold County, survivors included his sister Saide Merritt of Kellerton and one brother > N. Merrill of Wray, Colorado.

In 1930 Yuma County, Forrest is 37, M. Lucille 40, W. Maynard 17, Esther R. 12, Dean M. 5, and K. Sammy 2.

They're still in Yuma County in 1940, with the four kids, and Forrest registered for WWII there.

Forrest Raymond Merrill, per # 16772174 is buried in Kellerton, Iowa 1892-1962, with Millie Lucile (McCleary) Merrill 1889-1983, # 16772176.

Samuel N. Merrill 1863-1953 is buried in the Merritt Cemetery, Wanamaker, Ringgold County. # 13443578.

Millie "Lucile" McCleary, daughter of W. G. and Araminta McCleary, was born April 5, 1889 near Kellerton, Iowa, and passed away at the Clearview Home, Mount Ayr, Iowa, on Jan. 24, 1983 at the age of 93 years, nine months, and 18 days.
On August 17, 1910, she was united in marriage to Forrest Merrill. He preceded her in death in 1962.
To this union five children were born: Maynard, Sam, and Esther (Mrs. Clifford Allen) of Kellerton, Dean of Greeley, Colorado, and Phyllis who died at age three years.
With the exception of a few years in South Dakota, 27 years near Wray, Colorado, and 3 1/2 years in the Clearview Home, the remainder of her life was lived in and near Kellerton.
She was a loving mother and grandmother, and her greatest pleasure was having her family gathered around her table.
Lucile was a life-long member of the Kellerton Methodist Church.
She is survived by her four children; daughters-in-law Beverly, Ruth, and Evalena; son-in-law Clifford ALLEN; seven grandchildren; two step-grandsons, Paul Beck of Garden Grove, and Dale Beck of Twin Falls, Idaho; 14 great-grandchildren; a sister, Mrs. Esther MANNING; many other relatives and friends who will miss her sadly.
Rev. Walter Zarr conducted the funeral service held at 3 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 26 at Wilson-Watson Funeral Home in Mount Ayr. Music was by Mrs. Weldon Meadows.
Casketbearers were Max Buck, Don Allen, Dale Allen, Roy Weddle, Darrell Powers and Francis McDowell. Burial was in Maple Row Cemetery at Kellerton.

Maynard Merrill, son of Forest and Lucille Merrill, was born Oct. 6, 1912 in Kellerton, Iowa. All but a few years, which he spent in Colorado, he lived in Kellerton. He was a loving son, who took care of his sick parents until their death. He was preceded in death by his parents and a sister. On Oct. 2, 1980, he married Evalena Beck in Grant City, Mo. She survives, along with two step-sons, Paul BECK of Garden Grove, Iowa, and Dale Beck of Klamath Falls, Oregon; six step-grandchildren; two brothers, Sam of Kellerton and Dean of Greeley, Colorado; a sister, Esther ALLEN of Kellerton; and an aunt, Esther MANNING of Kellerton. Funeral services were held Oct. 28 from the First Christian Church at Kellerton, Iowa, conducted by Rev. Cela Fugate. Music was provided by Mrs. Weldon Meadows and Richard Jackson. Casketbearers were Rod Smith, Ron Loomis, Arlen Hughes, Jack Hughes, Larry Sickels and Phillip Godden. Burial was in Maple Row Cemetery at Kellerton, Iowa.
Maynard 1912-1987 and Evalina 1926-2003 are buried in Maple Row Cemetery, Ringgold County.

Esther R. Allen, daughter of Forrest & Millie "Lucile" (McCleary) Merrill, was born December 9, 1917 at Kellerton, Iowa. In the 1920's, the family moved to Colorado where her dad raised cattle and wheat. Esther graduated high school in 1935 at Wray, Colorado. Esther returned to Kellerton to care for her grandparents. She also worked in the local doctor's office and a grocery store.

On January 17, 1942, she was united in marriage to Clifford B. Allen in Bethany, Missouri. They moved to a farm west of Kellerton where she lived the most years of her life. In addition to being a loving wife and caring mother, Esther worked in the Ringgold County Treasurers Office and was the Kellerton City Clerk until 1982. Esther was active in the Kellerton United Methodist Church and the U.M.W. She enjoyed the neighborhood card club.

Clifford passed away on February 19, 1987. In the early 1990's Esther moved into Kellerton. In August of 2014, she moved to Monticello, Illinois to be close to family as her health declined.

Esther passed away at the Piatt County Nursing Home in Monticello, Illinois on October 21, 2014. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband; two brothers Maynard and Sam; and a sister, Phyllis, at age 3.
Those left to cherish her memory include her two sons Don & wife Ann of Grand Mound, Iowa and Dale & wife Barbara of Deland, Illinois; four grandchildren Greg, Brian, Todd, and Christy; two great grandchildren Rae Anne and Charley; brother Dean Merrill & wife Rose of Winterset, Iowa; nieces, nephews; other relatives and friends.
Memorials are to the Kellerton United Methodist Church or donor's choice.

Dean Mark Merrill was born September 30, 1924 at the ranch his parents, Forrest R. & Millie "Lucile" (McCreary) Merrill, owned near Wray, Colorado. He grew up and was educated at Wray, Colorado. Dean was drafted into World War II in 1942. He served in the European Theater, England, Germany, France, and Belgium. Dean returned to the United States in 1946 and received an honorable discharge.
Dean loved driving trucks. In 1949, he started driving a REO Truck, hauling grain. At this time, Dean married and to this union two sons were born; Wayne D. Merrill of Virginia and Gerold L. Merrill, who lives in California. Dean settled in Greeley, Colorado and his life was spent as an over the road truck driver. From 1967 to 1991, Dean drove Denver to Chicago, to the Northwest, coast to coast and border to border, delivering freight. Dean was recognized as a safe driver for 3,000,000 accident-free miles. Dean remarried and was a step-father to Ruth's three children. They were happily married until she passed away from cancer in 1997. Dean moved back to Iowa in 2000 to be near his brother, Sam, and sister Esther. In 2001, Dean married Rose (Motsinger) Fugate of Kellerton, Iowa. Dean and Rose enjoyed their time together and have been living in Winterset, Iowa. Dean passed away November 1, 2014 in Winterset.

He was preceded in death by his parents; wife Ruth; brothers Maynard & Sam Merrill; and sisters Phyllis Merrill and Esther Allen.
Survivors include his wife Rose Merrill of Winterset, IA; step-children Vickie (Bob) Lewis of Marshalltown, IA, Tammy Fugate of Houston, TX, Michael (Cindy) Fugate of Des Moines, IA, and Rob (Jennifer) Fugate of St. Charles, IA; 5 step-grandchildren; nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
Dean was cremated and a memorial service will be held at Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home in Mount Ayr on Sunday, November 9 at 2:00 p.m. A memorial fund has been established to the Arthritis Foundation.

Sam K. Merrill, youngest child of Forest R. & Lucile (McCreary) Merrill, was born June 29, 1927 at the home on a ranch north of Wray, Colorado. He departed this life on January 25, 2010 at the Mount Ayr Health Care Center in Mount Ayr at the age of 82 years. He attended country school through the eighth grade and graduated from Wray High School in 1944. a After graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served the American and Asiatic Pacific during World War II. After returning from the service, he came to Kellerton, Iowa where his parents had moved. Here he would meet his lovely wife Beverly Jackson and they were married May 27, 1949 in Blanchard, Iowa. Together they made Kellerton their home through many happy years. Sam drove a fuel truck for Kellerton Oil Company for several years and in February 1965, he was appointed Postmaster of the Kellerton Post Office, serving there until his retirement in 1990. He was a member of the Kellerton United Methodist Church, served 25 years as a volunteer fireman, and was on the Kellerton American Legion Post #676 firing squad for 50 years.

Sam & Bev were married 56 years before her passing. Preceding him in death were his wife Bev in 2005; his parents, Forest in 1962 and Lucile in 1983; brother Maynard in 1987; brother-in-law Clifford Allen in 1987; and a sister, Phyllis, in infancy.

Those left to cherish his memory include his sister Esther Allen and a brother Dean Merrill & wife Rose, all of Kellerton; brother-in-law Park Jackson & wife Ina of Omaha, NE; numerous nieces, nephews, and many dear friends.

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