Esther Katherine McKenzie was born March 31, 1926 in Norwalk, Iowa to Lyle and Matilda Gates. She was the youngest of 6 children, all of whom were brothers.
When she was starting first grade, her oldest brother was graduating from high school.
She reminisced about the days when her mother would wrap their lunches in newspaper, her favorite past time was playing baseball with her brothers, and she did chores around the house for her parents.
She attended Nursing school in DeMoine, Iowa. She then traveled to Denver, where she met her husband, Roger McKenzie. In 1949, they were blessed with their first child Michael Shannon, and Jeffrey Lyle in 1951. They were married for almost 60 years.
Esther worked many years as a registered nurse, but her favorite position was at the Sheridan Memorial Hospital as the Director of Medical Records. Esther and Roger loved to travel, and Esther avidly journaled about each adventure- to include how much oil they used…down to the price of a potato bought for supper.
Her hobbies included knitting, sewing, gardening, playing cribbage, reading, walking, planning family reunions, and most importantly- helping others. She also loved to spend quality time with her three grandkids- Colin, Daniel, and Katherine.
She was very involved in the community. Esther was a founding member as well as on the board of directors at the Senior Center for 6 years, delivered meals on wheels for 30, and was also very devoted to her faith and the church. All of the volunteering she did led her to receive the Keystone Award in 2015. Esther was also a silver haired legislature and a teacher at Taylor School.
She was preceded in death by her Sons, Micheal and Jeff, her husband Roger, and her brothers- Ralph, Martin, Frank, Glen, and Connelly Gates.
Esther is survived by her three grandkids- Colin, Daniel, and Katherine McKenzie, her daughter in law Rosanne Fitzgerald, and multiple nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Donations in Esther’s name may be made to the Sheridan Senior Center at Smith St., Sheridan, WY 82801.
Services will be held at 10:00 am on Thursday, January 10, 2019, at the First Presbyterian Church with Pastor Paul Hayden officiating.
Online condolences may be written at www.kanefuneral.com.
Kane Funeral Home has been entrusted with local arrangements.