Obituaries week of 11-18-10


Jean Otter

Marian Jean (Cochran) Otter, 77, of Vevay, passed away at 9:09 p.m. Sunday, November 14th, 2010, at King’s Daughters’ Hospital in Madison.

She was born August 24th, 1933, in Rushville, the daughter of George A. and Mildred Elizabeth (Brown) Cochran, who both preceded her in death. She was raised in Rush County where she attended school.

She was united in marriage on July 22nd, 1950, in Vevay, to Donald Lee Otter. Unto this union three daughters and two sons arrived to bless their home.

She was employed as a machine operator for 25 years with the U.S. Shoe Corporation in Vevay. She delivered meals to the elderly for LifeTime Resources. She was a cashier for Vevay Shell and Markland Shell for 11 years. She operated the bait shop in Vevay and Markland with her husband for several years. She will be remembered for her love of reading, word puzzles, gardening and her dogs.

Survivors include her daughters, Georgia Gullion and husband Wayne of Vevay, Vicki O’Brien of Versailles and Jean Ann Cole of Vevay; her sons, Donald Wayne Otter and wife Rhonda of Moorefield and Ronald Dale Otter and wife Lorrie of Vevay; her grandchildren, Jennifer, Megan, Tausha, Olesha, Collin, Kyle, Michael, Brandon, Kendall and Calen; her great-grandchildren, Tyler, Landon, MiKaela, Julian, Trenton, Kiera, Kyla, Oakley, Baylee and Bradley; her sister, Georgia Jewell of Madison; her sister-in-law, Zella Cochran of Florida; and several nieces and nephews.

She was also preceded in death by her husband, Donald Lee Otter on March 31st, 2004; and her brother, James Cochran.

Funeral services will be conducted by Reverend Howard Wade at 11 a.m. Friday, November 19th, at Haskell & Morrison Funeral Home in Vevay. Burial will be in Vevay Cemetery. Friends may call from 5-8 p.m. today (Thursday, November 18th) at the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to the Wiedemann Children’s Foundation. Online condolences may be sent to the family via the funeral home’s website at

Harold Merrill

Harold Jamison Merrill, 89, of Rising Sun, passed away at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, November 13th, 2010, at Dearborn County Hospital in Lawrenceburg.

He was born June 11th, 1921, in Switzerland County, the son of Albert Dean and Anna (Jamison) Merrill, who both preceded him in death. He was raised in Switzerland County and was a 1939 graduate of Vevay High School. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy on August 31st, 1942, in Indianapolis and was shipped out to the Navy’s Great Lakes Training Center in Illinois for his basic training. He served in Alameda, California, Bombing Squadron 142 and in San Diego, California. He was a navigator and bombardier, serving on the Island of Tinian, where the Enola Gay and Box Car were stationed. He rose to the rank of Aviation Machinist’s Mate Fist Class during World War II. For his service to his country he was awarded the Air Medal, the American Theater Ribbon, the Asiatic Pacific Ribbon, the Air Crew Insignia and the Good Conduct Medal. He was honorably discharged on November 12th, 1945, at Great Lakes, Illinois.

He was united in marriage on February 15th, 1944, in Cincinnati, Ohio, to Margaret “Pud” Pickett. Unto this union a daughter Pam arrived to bless their home. They enjoyed over 66 years of marriage together.

They resided in North Vernon from 1957-2000, when they moved to Rising Sun to be near their daughter. He was employed as a tool and die maker for the Ford Plant (ITT) in North Vernon, retiring in 1986, after 26 years of service. He was a member of First Baptist Church and Muscatatuck Country Club in North Vernon. He was a golf enthusiast and enjoyed golfing with his buddies and especially his daughter Pam. He will be remembered for his love of traveling, hunting, fishing, the Cincinnati Reds and most of all, his dogs.

Survivors include his wife, Margaret”Pud” Merrill of Rising Sun; his daughter, Pam A. Merrill of Rising Sun; his grandson, Justin Smith of Aurora; and his cousin, Russell Clendening of North Vernon.

He was also preceded in death by his sister, Agnes Merrill on August 29th, 1980; his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Russell H. and Ramona Pickett, Wilma and Harold C. “Red” Benedict, Dr. William and Mary Pickett, Lorraine “Rainey” Pickett and Lola “Lody” Pickett.

Funeral services were conducted by Reverend Ronald Sandidge Wednesday, November 17th, at Haskell & Morrison Funeral Home in Vevay. Burial was in Vevay Cemetery with military rites conducted by the Honor Guard of Vevay American Legion Post 185 and Vevay VFW Post 5396. Memorial contributions may be made to Ohio County Rescue or Rising Sun Fire Department. Online condolences may be sent to the family via the funeral home’s website at

Helen Bennett

Helen Marie Bennett, 87, of Patriot, passed away at 10:35 a.m. Tuesday, November 9th, 2010, at The Waters of Rising Sun.

She was born in Rising Sun on August 11th, 1923, the daughter of the late Mildred (Hizer) and Walter Kittle. She worked at Richie Egg Farm in Rising Sun for 12 years. She was also a homemaker and had worked at Aurora Chair Factory. She was a long time member of the Rising Sun Nazarene Church.

On August 9th, 1940, she married Frank Scudder. Unto this union two sons were born, William Raymond who died in infancy and Robert Wayne. On August 19th, 1972, she married Joe T. Bennett, who passed away in 2003. They spent over 31 wonderful years together.

Survivors include her son, Robert W. “Bob” Scudder of Patriot; her brother, David Kittle (Evelyn) of Rising Sun; her nieces, Mary Wallick, Linda Thayer, Debbie LaFollette, Barbara Muncy, Carylon East, Becky Lane, Susan Ashcraft, Diana Scudder and Joli Zielke; and her nephews, Raymond Kittle, James Gridley, Paul Gridley, Jimmie Kittle and Jeff Kittle.

She was also preceded in death by her brothers, James Kittle and Raymond Kittle; her sisters, Evelyn Lane, Margaret Gridley, and Mary Kittle; and her nephews, Robin Kittle and David Ray Kittle.

Funeral services were conducted by Reverend Chris Robinson Saturday, November 13th, at Markland Funeral Home in Rising Sun. Burial was in Rising Sun New Cemetery. Memorial donations may be made to Rising Sun Nazarene Church or The Waters of Rising Sun Activity Fund.

Walter H. Schwanholt

Walter H. Schwanholt, 91, of Cross Plains, passed away Friday, November 12th, 2010, at Ross Manor in Dillsboro.

He was born near Cross Plains on November 16th, 1918, the son of John and Alma Steingruber Schwanholt.

He was married to Irene Neahousmeyer on September 1st, 1945, and she preceded him in death on January 24th, 2003.

Survivors include his daughters, Carolyn (Danny) Wehmeyer of New Smyrna Beach, Florida, and Mary Kathryn (C. B. “Bing”) Dickerson of Florence; his grandchildren, Heather (Brian) Schott of McDonough, Georgia and Joe Wehmeyer of Culver City, California; his great-grandchildren, Savannah and Hayden Schott; his brother, Victor Schwanholt of Versailles; and his sister, Meta Thieman of Cross Plains.

He was also preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, Edward Schwanholt.

He spent his entire life in the Cross Plains and Dewberry communities. He attended the Dewberry School and was a life member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Dewberry where he was confirmed on May 21st, 1933. He was a farmer and had been employed with Halcomb’s, Grote Manufacturing, and was employed with the Indiana State Highway Department in the Seymour and Aurora districts. He was also a licensed TV and radio repairman and had run a shop in Vevay and also from his home for several years.

Funeral services were held Tuesday, November 16th, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Dewberry with Pastor Ralph Campen officiating. Burial was in the church cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Lutheran Hour or St. Paul’s Cemetery in care of Stratton-Karsteter Funeral Home of Versailles.