Cover photo for Mary Frances Arens's Obituary
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1941 Mary Frances 2024

Mary Frances Arens

July 22, 1941 — May 2, 2024

Hartington, NE

Mary Frances Arens of Hartington, Nebraska, a beacon of light and warmth, passed away on Thursday, May 2, 2024, surrounded by her family and friends in Norfolk, Nebraska. At age 82, she left behind a legacy of love and devotion that will forever illuminate the lives of those she touched. 

 Mass of Christian Burial will be on Monday, May 6, 2024 at 10:30 a.m. at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Hartington with the Rev. Owen Korte officiating.  Burial will be at St. Michael’s Cemetery in Hartington. Visitation will be on Sunday, at church, from 4-6:00 p.m. with a Vigil service at 6:00 p.m.  Visitation will continue on Monday one hour prior to services.  Arrangements are under the direction of the Wintz Funeral Home in Hartington.  As we bid farewell to Mary Frances, we take solace in knowing that her legacy of love and compassion will bloom eternally in the hearts of those she has left behind. She will be profoundly missed, but her spirit will live on in the memories and hearts of all who knew her.

 Pallbearers will be grandsons Christopher Kruse, Daniel Arens, Levi Arens, Reid Arens, Jacob Nodes & Caden Arens. Honorary pallbearers are the rest of her grandchildren.

 Mary Frances was born to Alphonse and Clara (Rolfes) Heine on July 22, 1941, in Yankton, SD, and grew up on her parents' farm in St. Helena, Nebraska, alongside her brothers, Allen and Leon-Butch Heine. From an early age, she embraced the values of hard work and the art of culinary mastery, skills that would become her hallmark. After attending Mount Marty High School and a year of nursing school, Mary Frances found herself swept off her feet by her dashing husband, Dennis Arens.

 On August 30, 1961, Mary Frances embarked on a lifelong journey of love when she married her beloved Dennis in a beautiful ceremony at their family church in St. Helena, Nebraska. Settling on a farm in Hartington, Nebraska, Mary Frances devoted herself to raising their seven children. She could often be seen driving the tractor with her children beside her, a testament to her dedication to both her family and her husband's farm. Together, Dennis and Mary Frances forged a bond of love and devotion that lasted over 62 years, nurturing a family filled with warmth and compassion.

 Beyond her role as a devoted wife and mother, Mary Frances was an integral part of her community. She served as a 4-H leader, CCD teacher, and was actively involved in various church and community organizations, including the Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Altar Society, and Christian Mothers of America.

 Family and faith were the cornerstones of Mary Frances's life. She lovingly imparted both academic and life skills to her children and grandchildren, always leading by example with her unwavering strength, humor, and positivity. Despite enduring numerous health challenges throughout her lifetime, including over 35 major surgeries, Mary Frances remained resilient, drawing strength from her faith and the love of her family.

 Mary Frances's love for life was evident in her many passions, from gardening and canning to playing Sudoku and baking award-winning desserts, with her famous "French Silk" pie being a family favorite. Her nurturing spirit extended to her beloved pets, particularly her cats, and she found joy in simple pleasures like card games and storytelling with loved ones.

 Mary Frances leaves behind a legacy of kindness and joy that will be carried on by her husband Dennis, her seven children, nineteen grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren, who will forever cherish her memory. Though her physical presence may be gone, her spirit will continue to guide and inspire all who were blessed to know her.

 Mary Frances is survived by her husband, Dennis Arens and seven children; Kim (late Todd) Wike-Omaha,  Lisa (Gary) Kruse-Hartington,  Leon (Susan) Arens-Omaha,  Dennis Jr. (Dree) Arens-Hartington,  Thomas (Teresa) Arens-Hartington,  Jennifer (Bill) Nodes-Frisco, TX,  and Michael (Alicia) Arens-Fenton, MO; nineteen grandchildren: Christopher Kruse, Corey (Mary) Kruse, Eric Kruse, Jesse Kruse, Megan (Kyle) Netzel, Daniel Arens, Caroline (Chris) Hobbs, Alexis (Adam) Heine,  Levi Arens,  Blake Arens,  Nate Arens,  Reid Arens,  Breanna Arens,  Jacob Nodes,  Jackson Nodes,  Joshua Nodes,  Jayden Nodes,  Caden Arens,  and Madeline Arens; eight great-grandchildren: Carter Kruse, Cole Kruse, Claire Kruse, Catey Kruse, Eleanor Netzel, Ida Netzel, Calvin Hobbs, and Jovy Heine; siblings: Allen (Mitzy) Heine and Leon-Butch (late Arlene) Heine. 

 Mary Frances was preceded in death by parents-Alphonse and Clara Heine, brother-John Heine, infant sister-Josephine Heine, sister in law-Arlene Heine, son in law-Todd Wike.

 

 


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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Sunday, May 5, 2024

4:00 - 6:00 pm

Holy Trinity Catholic Church

404 S Broadway Ave, Hartington, NE 68739

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Prayer Service

Sunday, May 5, 2024

Starts at 6:00 pm

Holy Trinity Catholic Church

404 S Broadway Ave, Hartington, NE 68739

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass

Monday, May 6, 2024

Starts at 10:30 am

Holy Trinity Catholic Church

404 S Broadway Ave, Hartington, NE 68739

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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