Verna Mae was born on April 23, 1930 in Purdy, Missouri, to John and Anna Miller. Siblings include: Elna Meister, Dorothy Miller, Marzella Hemmerling, Mildred Lilleoien and Gene Miller, all of which predeceased her except for Gene. The youngest of the six children, she lived in Purdy until graduating from high school in 1948 and heading off to what was then Missouri State Teacher's College (now MSU) to pursue a teaching degree in home economics. After graduation, she taught for one year in Lockwood, Missouri.
Her high school sweetheart, Jerome (J.B.) Nations, was off at that time participating in the Korean War, but had the good sense to come home with a ring. They were united in marriage June 3, 1953, at St. John's Lutheran Church in Stones Prairie. Following a brief period of living in Kansas City and Monett, the couple made their home in Cassville where J.B. became a State Farm agent.
Verna Mae taught school in Exeter briefly before quitting to devote her time to helping with the agency and raising the children. She and J.B. were instrumental in the founding of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Cassville. They also worked very hard on the campaign to beautify Cassville's Christmas light and courthouse displays. On Jan. 6, 2003, J.B. was called home.
Ever a good German, Verna Mae valued a clean house and a beautiful yard. She enjoyed the company of many friends and was always up for a bridge game or a trip to the casino. Into the lives of those who loved her, she injected frankness and wisdom.
Verna Mae is survived by her children: Cathy Everest and her husband, David, of Prairie Village, Kan.; Connie Bishop, of Cassville; Carolyn Bishop and her husband, Bob, of Cassville; and Jana Shetler and her husband, Rod, of Springfield, Mo. Her eight grandchildren are Adrien Everest, Julie (Bishop) Davis, Alicia (Bishop) Darnell, Brent Everest, Brian Bishop, Kyle Bishop, Jared Bishop, and Jake Benson (J.B.) Shetler. She has one great-grandchild, Isaac Darnell. In addition, she has a host of extended family and friends who will miss her dearly.
Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m., on Saturday, March 3, 2012 at Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Cassville, under the direction of Fohn Funeral Home, Cassville, Mo. The family will receive friends from 4:30-6:30 p.m. on Friday at Fohn Funeral Home.
Memorial contributions may be made to The American Cancer Society, Cassville Senior Center or Hospice Compassus. The family extends sincere thanks to all who have offered their support; the glory for Verna Mae's life goes to our God.