Clara Schweitzer, 85, of Harvey, died Thursday, March 10, 2011, at the St. Aloisius Hospital in Harvey.
Clara was born July 4, 1925, on a farm near Kintyre. She was the daughter of Pius and Juliana (Schmidt) Reis. She grew up and attended rural school near Kintyre. When it came time for high school, a Finnish couple living near the Reis family encouraged Clara's dad Pius to let her move to Napoleon for her freshman year of high school because she was too small and frail and farm work was too hard for her. Clara attended high school her last three years in Bismarck where she lived with her sister, Helen. She graduated from St. Mary's Catholic High School on May 29, 1944. Following graduation she worked as a receptionist for Dr. Lipp in Bismarck for 17 years. Her dream in life was to become a nurse and she took correspondence classes from Chicago School of Nursing and passed. She regretted not taking the state board to become a nurse. Clara met her future husband, John Schweitzer, at a big band orchestra dance at the Memorial Building in Bismarck. Clara and John were united in marriage on May 24, 1950, in Bismarck. They lived in Bismarck where John worked for the Soo Line Railroad and their four children were born. The family moved to Herreid, S.D., and lived there for a time and then in Harvey before moving back to Bismarck. In 1971 the family moved to Harvey where they made their home. Clara was a cashier at Kary's Red Owl Store in Harvey for several years and was known as the "Red Owl Lady."
Clara was a member of the St. Cecilia Catholic Church, Altar Society, Bell Choir and served as a Eucharistic minister for 20 years. She was also a member of TOPS and attended many state conventions.
Clara enjoyed bowling on her Tuesday Morning Coffee League team. Her team won first place in 1989-1990 and 1996-1997. She proudly displayed her trophies at home.
Clara and John enjoyed traveling and toured 44 lower states and Alaska. They also traveled to Austria and Switzerland. She also enjoyed many trips to Las Vegas and to casinos in North Dakota. Clara enjoyed canning, watching Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune and reading the newspaper. Clara's favorite pet was a toy white poodle named Troubles who was her companion for 17 years.
Clara is survived by her husband, John, of Harvey; three daughters and sons-in-law, Julie (Michael) Arnegard, Barb (Doug) Zottnick, all of Bismarck, Janet (Keith) Pritchard, of Lake Metigoshe; son and daughter-in-law, John-Allen and Sheri Schweitzer, of Jamestown; grandchildren, Ryan Zottnick, Bismarck, Joshua Zottnick, of Atlanta, Michael (Kari) Zottnick, of Bismarck, Megen (Jesse) Rundquist, Bismarck, Eric Arnegard, Bismarck, Emily (Nathan) Schneider, Bismarck, Katelyn (Paul) Pertile, Butte, Mont., Johna Pritchard, Minneapolis, Reis Pritchard, Lake Metigoshe; four great-grandchildren and one great-granddaughter on the way. Surviving brothers and sisters include, Helen (Pete) Wickenheiser, Fargo, Pete (Rose) Reis, Kintrye, Theresia (Jack) Dutt, Bismarck, Magdalena (Al) Leier, Linton, Barbara (Victor) Wald, Napoleon, Caroline (Karl) Schatz, Kettle River, Minn., Alvera (Tony) Leier, Kintyre, Angeline (Ed) Geiger, Bismarck.
Clara was preceded in death by her parents; brothers, Pius Jr. and Sebastian; sister, Eva Huber.
Funeral Mass will be held Tuesday, March 15, at 10 a.m., in St. Cecilia Catholic Church, Harvey.
Burial will be Tuesday at 4 p.m., at St. Mary's Cemetery, Bismarck.
Visitation will be Monday from 2 to 7 p.m. at Hertz Funeral Home, Harvey, with prayer services there Monday at 7 p.m.