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Esther Helen (Gutz) Haese

Esther Helen (Gutz) Haese

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July 13, 2011
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Esther Helen (Gutz) Haese, 89, of La Vernia, Texas, passed away Thursday, June 30, 2011. She was born Feb. 15, 1922, in La Vernia.

She was preceded in death by parents, Otto and Emma (Shievelbein) Gutz; her husband, Alton A. Haese; her brothers, Eugene Gutz, Edwin Gutz, and Ernest Gutz; her sisters, Hilda Puhlmann, Helen Gutz, Laura Lenz, and Louisa Lenz; her grandson, Travis Krahn; and her son-in-law, Eugene Wegmann.

Esther is survived by her sons, Alton Haese and wife Becky and Charles Haese; her daughters, Margie Krahn and husband Melvin and Barbara Wegmann; her grandchildren, Chad Haese, Karl Haese and wife Kristen, Beverly Mastracci and husband Tony, Erick Wegmann and wife Staci, and Heidi Green and husband James; eight great-grandchildren; and other loving family and friends.

Thoughts of the early years from Esther’s Journal:

“My father Otto Gutz passed away when I was 17 years old. He was a good father. He loved to take care of his cattle. At one time he had Red Poll cattle. My father took us kids along when we went to the county fairs at Seguin and another time in Gonzales. We had a 1928 Chevrolet car, the first one that we owned that had glass windows. When it rained papa or my brothers would put chains on the tires.

All in our family were good at math. Sometimes my papa would help me with a problem. Papa would always plant a lot of cotton. That was a lot of work, picking cotton. Papa would take a jug of water along for us to drink and he kept it cool with a grass sack around it that was wet. My brother Edwin would haul the cotton to St. Hedwig gin. It was the main cash crop at that time. Papa would give us kids $5 each to spend at the fair in Seguin.”

Esther’s father, Otto “Papa” Gutz, had the children go to school in St. Hedwig because he did not want them crossing Hwy 87 to go to school in La Vernia. The days were happy ones working in the cotton and corn fields. After a hard, dusty day in the fields, all the Gutz children would take a swim in the Cibolo Creek that ran on one end of the farm. All became excellent swimmers. Neighborhood children would often gather on Sundays for swimming here on the river. After Otto “Papa” passed away, Ernest, Esther’s brother, said she had to quit school because he would not or could not take her to school, so she walked 3 miles to the neighbors’ house to catch a ride to school. In the later years, Esther boarded with Henry and Emma Schievelbein, Oscar Tewes, and Florence Bauer.

Esther met Alton Haese at the Jaegerlust dance hall in St. Hedwig. They were married on Dec. 16, 1941, in the Post Oak Evangelical Church, and spent the rest of their lives on the farm raising kids and animals. Esther and Alton raised chickens for eggs and food. Esther would stay up late at night preparing the eggs with care for sale. Some of these precious eggs bought our weekly groceries. When the chickens didn’t lay very well, there weren’t many groceries to buy, but Esther always had a backup of food stored. There were potatoes under the house, and canned fruits, vegetables, and preserves in the cupboards. Esther never complained. When the old ringer washer broke, the backup plan came in to play, the old scrub board. The old black kettle was heated by mesquite wood for the homemade soap.

From the kids:

Mama (Esther) was the homemaker, giving dad and the kids all the comfort she could give. We had a wood stove on cold winter nights and she would warm our flannel sheets and socks by the wood stove and with warm hands, put our socks on, and lay us on the flannel sheets. Mama was always a good mom because she always helped us with our homework, faithfully prvided us with a snack when coming home from school, (and, oh, how the homemade bread and butter tasted and the bread pudding that awaited us after school), shared her artistic talents, made sure we were always happy, and always inquired about our fellow classmates at school. Before sending Alton off to school every day, she’d tie a nickel in a handkerchief for him to buy a soda. While waiting at the bus stop one day, it started raining. Mom didn’t have the car, so she walked to the road in the rain to provide us head cover, only to discover that we were already in our neighbors’ car, Joe Gutz, with daughter Irene.

Mama truly loved and cherished her grandchildren and was proud of all their accomplishments and achievements.

Esther was a kind, loving, and patient person. She was always there when you needed her. She is and will be greatly missed by everyone.

A visitation took place on Monday, July 4, from 5--9 p.m. in the Finch Funeral Chapel in La Vernia.

A funeral service was held on Tuesday at 10 a.m. in the La Vernia United Methodist Church with Pastor Harry Kahl and Pastor Cyndi Weidner officiating.

Interment followed in the Post Oak Cemetery in La Vernia.

Serving as pallbearers were Chad Haese, Karl Haese, Erick Wegmann, Walter Haese, Mark Lenz, and Fred Lenz. Honorary pallbearers were Gerald Hartmann, Wilbert Young, and Gerhard Steinbusch.

Donations may be made to the La Vernia United Methodist Church Bell Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 155, La Vernia, TX 78121.

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