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Marjorie I. Zeman

Funeral services for Marjorie I. Zeman, 97, of Pierre, SD, formerly of Chamberlain were held Saturday, April 27, 2019, at the Hickey Funeral Chapel in Chamberlain with burial in the St. Vencil's Bohemian National Cemetery at Bijou Hills. Visitation will begin one hour prior to the funeral services at the Hickey Funeral Chapel.

Marjorie Irene Gropper was born at home near Platte, SD, to Emil and Amanda (Odefy) Gropper on December 26, 1921. Marjorie attended country school and graduated from Platte High School in 1939. She enjoyed playing softball and excelled at basketball in high school.

On September 9, 1940, Marjorie was united in marriage to Fred Chilman and to this union three children were born, daughters Lynn and Twila, and son David. They made their home on the Chilman family farm, ten miles northeast of Platte. Fred died suddenly on August 1, 1951, following complications of rheumatic fever. Marjorie said the saddest and most difficult time in her life was that very bad winter of '51-'52 when she was alone on the farm with her three small children. Two years later on November 12, 1953, she married Charles Zeman and they moved to his farm south of Pukwana at the foot of the Bijou Hills. They had a daughter Joan.

Marjorie enjoyed working outdoors and was what she called a "tomboy," good with a gun, and always helping with the livestock and other outside chores. She always stayed in good physical condition, walking outdoors and on her treadmill into her 80's. Her daughters often said she was stronger and more agile that they were. She and Charles always had a large garden, especially raising lots of potatoes and watermelons.

In later years she and Charles had fun dancing at the Pukwana Ballroom and enjoyed many bus tours around the United States. They also enjoyed playing cards with neighbor friends and family.

They sold the farm and moved to Chamberlain, SD in 2001. They were members of the United Church of Christ in Chamberlain. Charles died on August 18, 2009. Marjorie moved to Kelly's Assisted Living in Pierre on September 1, 2012, to be near her daughter Twila.

Marjorie passed away on April 22, 2019 at Avera Maryhouse Hospice in Pierre at the age of 97 years. She is survived by her children Lynn Pease of Rapid City, SD, Twila (Gary) Merkwan of Pierre, SD, David (Judy) Chilman of Greenville, SC and Joan Greene of Placentia, CA; six grandchildren, Todd (Barb) Pease of Phoenix, AZ, Jill Rudloff and husband Jamie Boynton of Rapid City, SD, Tamie (Brad) Hedlund of Harrisburg, SD, Kim (Troy) Schaefer of Rapid City, SD, Trent (Jenny) Merkwan of Pierre, SD, and Kari (Justin) Ballew of Greenville, SC; 11 great grandchildren; and one great-great grandson.

Preceding her in death were her parents, husbands Fred and Charles, brother Leslie, sister Elaine, an infant grandson, and a great grandson.

Chamberlain Sun

116 S. Main Street 
Chamberlain, South Dakota 57325 

(605) 234-1444 (o)
(605) 234-1445 (f)