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Nellie Johanna Hecker, 75, of Silver Bay, died unexpectedly while travelling through Parkersburg, West Virginia on Tuesday, August 14, 2018.
She was born May 1, 1943 to Ragner Per and Jane (Tuin) Sander in Los Angeles, California. Johanna graduated from Western Pilgrim High School in El Monte, CA before attending Francis Asbury Bible School in Milan, IL. On January 2, 1972 she married David Hecker. Nellie earned her Licensed Practical Nurse certificate prior to serving as a missionary in Guatemala for a number of years, then spent time traveling the country singing in churches with her family. In 1978, they bought a piece of land in the Northern Minnesota wilderness that became their home for almost 40 years.
Johanna enjoyed music, riding bicycle with her husband, traveling, and her dog, Chulita.
Nellie was preceded in death by her parents; grandchildren, Clark and Reagan Russell and Ruth Hecker; and siblings, Janie Dean, James Sander, Jeannie Sander, and Janice Maynard.
She is survived by her husband of 46 years, David; children, Nathan (Renee), Joanna (Brad) Hawthorne, Susanna (Mark) Fenstad, Rachel Sherman, David II, Debbie (Mark) Russell, Rebekah (Steve) Fruh, Daniel (Danielle), Angie Parks, James (Rhea), and Misty Shaw; daughter-in-law, Rebecca O’Hara-Hecker; 53 grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and siblings, John Sander of Buhl, ID, Jerry Sander of Buhl, ID, Judy Nolte of Salisbury, NC, and Joyce Watkins of Elsmere, KY.
Visitation will be from 1 PM until the 2 PM funeral service on Friday, August 24, 2018 at the Bay Area Vineyard Church in Silver Bay.