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February 23, 2006

(5/15/1917 – 2/16/2006)

Richard Theodore Kraus, 88, passed away February 16, 2006, at the Scotland County Care Center in Memphis, MO.

He was born on May 15, 1917, at the family farm home near Arbela, MO, being one of five children born to Karl Gustave and Mary Elizabeth (Essig) Kraus.

Richard was married to Cleta Mae Dochterman on May 4, 1943. They became the parents of three children, Reva, Robert and Harold. They enjoyed row cropping and raising livestock together for 39 years in and around the Arbela and Gorin areas. Cleta Mae passed away January 22, 1982.

A 74-year member of the Arbela United Methodist Church, Richard fondly reminisced about how he and other members got together and put a basement under the church building using shovels and spades without the help of modern machinery. He proudly displayed his 20 years of perfect attendance Sunday School pins and was a dedicated member as long as his health allowed him to be.

He graduated from Granger High School with the Class of 1935.

Richard especially enjoyed raising sheep. His family doesn’t remember many Christmas gatherings that didn’t find a couple of new lambs behind the wood stove “getting warmed up,” before being carried back to the barn under his chore coat to be with their mothers.

Until two weeks before taking up residence in the Scotland County Care Center in August, 2003, Richard spent his days helping his sons on the farm. He enjoyed baking pies and oatmeal cookies and shared them with family and friends. He loved to sing his favorite hymns and could sing nearly all verses from memory. He also loved the old farm dog, Bosco.

Also preceding him in death were his parents; sister, Laona Trueblood; and brothers, Hubert and Karl, Jr.

Survivors include his children: Reva and husband Lonnie Dee Triplett, Robert and wife Joni Kraus, and Harold Kraus and Christi Wiley, and Carol Lynn (Hartman) Williams and husband Charles, who have long been a part of his family; one brother, Calvin; sisters-in-law, Arlene Dochterman, Wilma Goldsberry, Dorothy Dochterman, Claris Kraus, and Lois Wilson; a brother-in-law, Clifford Wilson; grandchildren, Daryn Triplett and wife Jennifer and sons Aden, Zyan and Nate, Brandyn Triplett, Dena and husband Todd Schmitter, Amy and husband Chris Talbert and children, Samantha, Katelyn and Magnum, Brian Kraus and wife Karen and children, Randon and Brianna, Hila and husband Mike Cook, Trent and wife Amber Hunziker, Clinton and wife Mary Hunziker and son Jonathon, and Laura Hunziker. He also leaves behind many nieces, nephews, and other relatives and friends and will long be remembered by many of the neighborhood “kids” who still fondly refer to him as RT or Uncle Richard.

Funeral services were held on February 19, 2006 in the Arbela United Methodist Church in Arbela, MO, with Pastor Harold Marshall and Pastor Christine Farrar officiating. Burial was in the Pleasant Grove Cemetery, Gorin, MO. Eilene Findley, Jana Muntz, and Jackie Doubet provided the music. Dale Tague, Kenny McNamar, Rodney Thomas, Johnny Erickson, Roger Armstrong, Allen Fitzgerald, and Nelson Golbricht served as pallbearers. Mike Cook, Brian Kraus, Chris Talbert, Todd Schmitter, Daryn Triplett, Brandyn Triplett, Clint Hunziker, and Trent Hunziker served as honorary pallbearers.

Memorials are suggested to the Arbela United Methodist Church and can be left at or mailed to the Gerth Funeral Service, 115 S. Main St., Memphis, MO 63555.

You may send your condolences to Mr. Kraus’s family via email at

Arrangements are under the direction of Gerth Funeral Service from its Memphis chapel.

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Memphis Democrat
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Memphis MO 63555
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