Service Time: 11 A.M.
Day and Date: Friday, September 25, 2009
Location: Pohlman~Varner~Peeler Mortuary Chapel
Visitation and Guest Book Registration: Day of service at mortuary.
Burial: None - Burial preceded the memorial service.
Memorial: Trinity United Methodist Church
Thelma M. Barnhill, 99, of Billings, Montana and former Russell resident, died on Wednesday, April 22, 2009 at the St. John Lutheran Home in Billings. She was born on December 9, 1909 in Havana, Kansas, the daughter of Joseph V. and Maude T. (Landers) Tanner.
She grew up in Eastern Kansas and after high school she accepted a teaching position where she taught all 8 grades in a country school. Years later she graduated from Central State University in Edmond, Oklahoma. She achieved her degree with a Bachelor in Education and a minor in music. She met and fell in love with William Leroy Barnhill and they were united in marriage on January 27, 1934 in Augusta, Kansas. From this union they were blessed with three children, sons Don and David and a daughter Doris. Thelma and the family moved to the Russell area in the 1960’s. William retired and she went to work for USD #407 as a teacher at Bickerdyke Elementary in Russell. Thelma loved teaching and caring for her students. You could say she had a real passion towards helping mold not just her student’s minds but their character as well. She was a member of the Trinity United Methodist Church of Russell. She was very active in church and involved in many different church groups. She especially enjoyed singing in the church choir, and playing the piano and the organ. She also enjoyed cooking, tending her flower garden, entertaining and volunteering. She also loved to travel, having made trips to Israel, Europe and all over the United States including Alaska and Hawaii. Most of all she enjoyed spending time with family and doing activities with her grandchildren. She was a very active member in the Order of the Eastern Star, a member of the Republican Women and was a life time member of the Kansas National Education Association.
Those she leaves behind are one daughter Doris Neill of Bullhead City, Arizona; a sister Maxine Thompson of Coffeyville, Kansas and 7 grandchildren, 8 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband William on October 26, 1987, two sons Don and David Barnhill; three sisters and one brother.
A celebration of Thelma’s life will be held at 11 A.M. on Friday, September 25, 2009 at the Pohlman-Varner-Peeler Mortuary in Russell. Services will conclude at the mortuary as burial has taken place on April 30, 2009. Guest book registration will be available the day of the service at the mortuary. Memorials may be given to the Trinity United Methodist Church, memorials and cards may be sent in care of the mortuary. Condolences may be sent via email by going to www.pvpmortuary.com. Pohlman-Varner-Peeler Mortuary of Russell is in charge of the funeral arrangements.