Sarah Schnell, 95, passed away November 17, 2019, at the Dougherty Hospice House in Sioux Falls, SD, surrounded by her family.

Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30 AM on Thursday, November 21st at St. William’s Catholic Church, Ramona with Father Bob Vinslauski as the Celebrant. Visitation will be 5-7 PM on Wednesday at Weiland Funeral Chapel with a prayer service at 7 PM and a Rosary to follow. Visitation will continue on Thursday one hour prior to mass. Burial will follow the mass in St. Ann’s Catholic Cemetery, Badus Township. Online condolences can be sent at

Sarah Lavada Hepner was born in Indiana County, PA on January 19, 1924, to James & Martha (Miller) Hepner. Sarah grew up in Pennsylvania and graduated from Indiana High School in 1943. Upon graduation, Sarah moved to Washington DC and worked as an FBI Fingerprinting Technician. Sarah met Donald Schnell (serving in the US Navy) on a blind date, they fell in love and were married on January 13, 1945, in Washington, DC. Sarah moved to Donald’s family homestead in Ramona, SD, after Donald’s service ended in 1946. They had two children, Elizabeth and James.

Sarah was a member of the St. Ann’s Badus Township Church, Ramona American Legion Auxiliary, 8 & 40 Salon #15 and the St. William’s Altar Society. She enjoyed baking, bowling, golfing, gardening, crocheting, reading, singing in the church choir and most of all spending time with her family and friends.

Grateful for having shared her life are her son, James Schnell and his wife, Lori (Stewart) of Sioux Falls, SD; three grandchildren, Tiffany (Ervin) Mace of Brandon, SD, Donald (Chelsey) Schnell, Haley (Jesse) Curtis, both of Sioux Falls, SD; six greatgrandchildren and many nieces & nephews.

Sarah was preceded in death by her husband, Donald; infant daughter, Elizabeth Ann; her parents, James & Martha Hepner; sister, Mary Elizabeth Lundstrum; and three brothers, James Edgar Jr., Cecil & Bob Hepner and niece, Donna Jean.

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