Leta Ellen Batie, 96, of Lexington died Saturday, July 29th, 2017 at the Plum Creek Healthcare Community in Lexington.
Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m. Monday, Aug. 14th, 2017 at First United Methodist Church in Lexington with Reverend Anne Gahn officiating. Visitation will be 4-6 p.m. on Sunday, August 13th, 2017 at Reynolds-Love Funeral Home in Lexington. Burial will be in Mt. Hope Cemetery in rural Lexington.
Leta was born July 28th, 1921 in York at her grandparent’s home to Herbert and Gertrude (Salmen) Burbank. She and her three sisters and two brothers grew up in rural Perkins County where she graduated from Madrid High School in 1939. She was active in 4-H as a youth, judging canning at the National Judging Contest and attending 4-H Club Congress, all in Chicago.
She attended Kearney State Teachers College in Kearney before transferring to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Home Economics in 1944. Later that same year she was hired by the Dawson County Extension Service as their Home Demonstration Agent. During the next three years she launched the County 4-H Speech Contest, which is still held today, and the 4-H Song Contest, which continued through the 1990s.
She met Warren Batie at county Rural Youth activities and the couple was married September 14th, 1947 at the First United Methodist Church in Lexington. To this union five children were born, Jeannine Louise, Lynn Eileen, Barbara Ann, Christopher Joseph and Donald Paul. After all her children were in school, Leta returned to work with the Dawson County Extension Service in 1965 as a part-time Home Extension Agent. She worked with Home Extension Clubs and women’s programs and during the summers helped with the 4-H program. She retired from Extension in 1975.
Warren and Leta farmed northeast of Lexington on the home place of Warren’s family. She was a wonderful mother and homemaker, and always had a large garden and beautiful flowers. In 1990 Warren and Leta were honored as the Lexington Area Chamber of Commerce Farm Family of the Year. Leta was active in Dawson Chapter #33 of the Eastern Star, serving as an officer for 24 years in the local chapter. On the state level she was a Grand Representative and was Assistant Grand Warder several times at Grand Chapter. She was also an active member of the First United Methodist Church for over 72 years, serving in many offices, including president of the church board for four years. She and Warren were also long-time members of the Mercury Club and she served in many capacities with the Methodist Women on the local and district levels. She was also active in many community groups and activities including the Goldenrod Kensington, the Golden Hours Extension Club and P.E.O. Chapter AN.
Leta is survived by her five children, Jeannine (Gene) Nelsen of Lyons, Lynn (John) Greer of Edgar, Barbara (Marvin) Hilgedick of Hartsburg, Missouri, Chris Batie of Durham, North Carolina, and Don (Barb) Batie of Lexington; six grandchildren, Anne (Eric) Ostendorf of Gothenburg, Sarah Greer Humphrey of Aurora, Ben (Kim) Hilgedick of Hartsburg, Missouri, Caroline Hilgedick of Eugene, Oregon, Julie (Doug) Loudon of Grand Island and Cicely Batie of Washington, D.C.; seven great-grandchildren; two sisters, Vaunia Miyoshi of Denver, Colorado, and Laura Atkins of New Hill, North Carolina; two brothers, Wayne (Jackie) Burbank of Des Moines, Iowa, and John (Nancee) Burbank of Eau Claire, Wisconsin; many nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
Preceding her in death were her husband Warren, her parents, sister Mary Anderson, and brothers-in-law Earl Anderson, Miles Miyoshi and Haywood Atkins.
Memorials are suggested to the Warren and Leta Batie Scholarship Fund through the Lexington Community Foundation, the Dawson County 4-H Foundation, First United Methodist Church and the Masonic Eastern Star Home for Children in Fremont.
Reynolds-Love Funeral Home in Lexington is assisting the family with arrangements. Please share online condolences with the family by visiting: reynoldslovefuneralhome.com.