COLUMBUS — Bernice Evelyn Mercer, of Columbus, formerly of Ogallala, died Friday, Dec. 22, 2017, at her home at the age of 84 following a brief illness.

Funeral services will be held 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 27, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Ogallala, with Pastor John Stubenrouch officiating. Burial will be held at 2:30 p.m. at Fort McPherson National Cemetery south of Maxwell.

Bernice Evelyn Volberding was born July 18, 1933, to George and Alice Volberding at Akron, Colorado. At age 3 her father rented some farmland and the family moved to a farm south of Ogallala where she attended District #21 country school. They remained there until her parents purchased a farm 7 miles south of Brule, and remained there until she graduated from Ogallala High School with the Class of 1950.

After graduation she worked for Goodall-Electric. On Jan. 14, 1954, she was united in marriage to George Mercer in Phoenix, Arizona. They began their family while being stationed at Hickam Air Force Base and Pearl Harbor in Honolulu, Hawaii. After his discharge they returned to Ogallala where she worked for the Nebraska Department of Roads for 22 years until she retired in 1992.

Her hobbies included crocheting, knitting, golf and working in the yard with her flowers. Over the years she crocheted many afghans for her family and friends and especially enjoyed making baby blankets for her newborn great-grandchildren.

Survivors include her son Mark (Margie) Mercer of Columbus; daughter Mardell (Kevin) Meier of Goddard, Kansas; grandchildren Matt (Teri) Mercer of Elkhorn, Megan (Damon) Williamson of Omaha, Brice Meier of Houston, Texas, and Brandon Meier and Blake Meier of Dallas, Texas; three great-grandchildren Mason and Mackenzie Mercer of Elkhorn and Evan Williamson of Omaha; aunt Evelyn Baxter of Orchard Park, New York; sister Sherri Gosnell of Brule; sisters-in-law Mollie Mercer of Ft. Collins, Colorado, and Jean Armstrong of Wray, Colorado; along with a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, family and friends.

She was preceded in death by her husband George in 2013; mother Alice and father George; sister and brother-in-law Betty and Clarence Ebke; brother and sister-in-law Wayne and Gladys Volberding; brother-in-law Don Gosnell; brother-in-law Jack Mercer; and sister-in-law and brother-in-law Gerry and Glennys Schilling.

Online condolences may be sent at

A memorial has been established in her memory.

Prairie Hills Funeral Home of Ogallala is in charge of arrangements.