Vivian Flo (Griffith) Rennard

Photo courtesy of photographer Joann Boggs
Photo courtesy of photographer Joann Boggs

(February 6, 1920 - November 9, 2013)


The Lusk Herald
November 13, 2013



Vivian Flo Griffith Rennard passed away on November 9, 2013. Services will be held on November 13, at 10 a.m. at the Pier Funeral Home in Lusk, WY. Burial will follow in Edgemont, SD at the family plot.

Vivian was the older daughter of Leonard and Ruth Hughes Griffith. She was born in Randolph, Nebraska, February 6, 1920.

Her father and mother worked for her family. Eventually her father and his older brother farmed together on the farm rented by their father-in-law who had moved to O’Neil Nebraska. Her dad fixed a sled with a knife along one side to harvest the corn. Vivian drove the team and her dad collected the corn stalks.

Vivian welcomed younger sister, Ruby on April 12, 1922.

The family moved to Wyoming in May 1931. They lived with one of her mother’s older sisters and husband in the Flat Top area until 1932 when they were able to find a farm to rent. They raised a garden and also grain and corn to feed cattle.

In July 1934, at age 14, she lost her mother. That fall she started high school in Lusk and attended two years. Another family with children had rented a basement apartment in Lusk and she was able to stay with them some of the time. On weekends when she didn’t go home, she worked at a sewing center. She had started learning to sew when they first came to Wyoming. If she could salvage any part of clothing that had seen better days, she would make clothes for her doll.

The family moved to Manville in 1936. Vivian graduated from Manville high school in 1938.

Her father helped build the Manville gymnasium and when his work hours were over for the day, he walked to a farm near Manville and worked there. Later her father was hired as janitor for the school.

Vivian and her sister found work cleaning homes. She worked for a family with seven children and did the cooking and helped clean house. She was paid $5 for six days work. Sometimes Vivian and Ruby worked at the one and only café.

After high school in Manville, Vivian went to college in Laramie. While in college she worked for a psychology teacher and the next year for a home economics teacher. Vivian researched and wrote articles about topics taught by the home economics teacher. After one year of college, with help from Mrs. Kunes, county superintendent, she taught at the Dryer school with three children. After several years she begin teaching at the Cheyenne River school. In addition to teaching, she also had to chop wood for the furnace and keep it going all week long.

While teaching at Cheyenne River school, she met and married Sam Rennard. They lived on the family ranch where she enjoyed being a homemaker and helping with ranch duties. Sam and Vivian raised three children, Cheryll, Stan and Carol in the Cheyenne River community.

In the mid 1950’s Sam and Vivian built a gas station and café at the junction of highway 85 and 18 and leased it for several years. In 1960, Sam and Vivian moved to Mule Creek Junction and ran the station until 1973.

After selling the station, they built a new home on the family ranch which they were able to enjoy for many years. She lived in the home until age 90. At that time she moved to assisted living in Newcastle and then to the nursing home in Wheatland in early 2013.

Vivian enjoyed gardening, sewing, canning food and later took some tole painting classes in Edgemont. She liked to host Sunday School at her home and was also a member of the Road Runners Homemakers Club. She fondly talked of her grandchildren Jennifer and Tye and also her great granddaughters Peyton and Abby.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Sam, sister Ruby, and grandson Tye. She is survived by her children Cheryll (Carl) Christianson and Stan Rennard of Lusk, and Carol Sutherland of Cheyenne; and granddaughter Jennifer (Bo), great granddaughters Peyton and Abby, and several nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Niobrara Homemakers Council, American Missionary Fellowship or a charity of the donors’ choice.

Funeral arrangements are being handled by Pier Funeral Home of Lusk.








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