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Elaine Penner

Elaine Penner, age 88, of Aurora, formerly of Grand Island, passed away on Wednesday, April 22, 2020, at Westfield Quality Care.

Due to the COVID-19 restrictions in place at this time, private family inurnment will be at the Aurora Catholic Cemetery. A Rosary and Memorial Service will take place at a later date. Memorials may be made in care of the family to designate at a later date. Condolences may be e-mailed to the family through the mortuary website at www.higbymortuary.com.


Elaine Mary Penner, the daughter of Joseph and Frances (Orendorff) Strotman, Sr., was born in Aurora, Nebraska on March 8, 1932 and passed away in Aurora, Nebraska on April 22, 2020, at the age of 88.

She attended school in Aurora and graduated from Aurora High School. Elaine then went to work as a bookkeeper for the JC Penney Store.

On May 5, 1952, she was united in marriage to Melvin 'Jake' Penner at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Aurora. They had three children: Vicki, Cheryl and Greg. Elaine stayed home and raised their family. Jake passed away on October 5, 2018.

Elaine was a former member of St. Mary's Catholic Church & Altar Society. She enjoyed sewing, doing crafts and cooking & baking for her family.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband; daughter, Cheryl Ryan and two brothers, Joe Strotman, Jr. and Don Strotman.

Those left to cherish her memory are her daughter, Vicki (Jerry) VanAckeren of Lincoln; son, Greg Penner of Grand Island; son-in-law, Ed Ryan of Overland Park, KS; 8 grandchildren; 12 great grandchildren and several nieces, nephews and other family and friends.

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