Samuel Rennard was born Feb. 9, 1919 to Tom and Mary Jane Earnshaw Rennard. His parents had come to Wyoming from England and homesteaded west of Mule Creek Junction in northern Niobrara County. Tom carried mail between the Mule Creek area and Edgemont with a wagon and a team of horses. Sam was born in the family home on the first land his parents purchased east of the Cheyenne River. He grew up on the family ranch in the Mule Creek area, attending rural school through the 10th grade. He graduated from high school in Edgemont, South Dakota, doing his own cooking while in town for school and catching a ride home on Friday night with some of the neighbors who might be in for supplies. After high school, he attended automotive school in Laramie.
After coming back to the ranch, Sam fixed up an old Ford tractor and planted alfalfa on the meadow near the house to replace the clover. His two older brothers, Robert and Tom, worked summers for the Tubbs Dairy in South Dakota, and Mr. Tubbs asked if they had another brother who could work there. But Sam wasn't interested. His passion was with machinery, and there were rarely any mechanical problems over the years he couldn't resolve. Neighbors from a wide area knew that if they couldn't fix something, Sam probably could. The kids remember more than one family trip to town was cancelled because Sam felt responsible for keeping the community telephone line in working order.
In 1941 Vivian Griffith came to teach in the Cheyenne River School near Mule Creek Junction. She and Sam were married Jan. 31, 1944, and raised one son and two daughters on the family ranch. Their first house was a building moved in from Igloo, South Dakota. In 1951 Sam doubled the size of their house. He served as deputy assessor for Niobrara County for several years, and as a brand inspector for many years. In the fall of 1956 he built a gas station and cafe at Mule Creek Junction, later leasing it to two different couples. In 1960, after Sam's mother was in a nursing home, the family moved to the junction and operated the station until it was sold in 1972. Sam worked on several ASCS committees through the years and was a member of the Masons for over 60 years.
In 1973 a new house was built and he and Vivian opened it for rural Sunday school meetings for many years. But Sam didn't retire until first epilepsy and then Alzheimer's overcame him. He was taken to the Newcastle hospital July 27, 2006, and moved to the Custer Nursing Home August 2nd, where he passed away Sept 14.
Sam was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Tom and Robert; one grandson Tye Rennard.
Sam is survived by Vivian, his wife of 62 years; one son Stan (Marlene) of Lusk; two daughters, Cheryl (Carl) Christianson of Lusk and Carol Sutherland of Cheyenne; one granddaughter, Jennifer (Boe) Kottwitz of Lusk and two great granddaughters, Peyton and Abby Kottwitz of Lusk.
A funeral service was held Sept 19, at the Cicmanec-Pier Funeral Home in Lusk with Pastor Delbert Dick officiating. Sam will be buried beside his parents at the Edgemont Cemetery.
A memorial has been designated to the Alzheimer's Association.
Images & Attachments
|Obituary||Patten, Ruby (04/12/1922 - 01/03/2004)||View Record||Obituary||Rennard, Mary (09/18/1879 - 07/16/1964)||View Record||Obituary||Rennard, Robert (05/26/1907 - 04/12/1985)||View Record||Obituary||Rennard, Tye (10/01/1977 - 08/30/1985)||View Record||Obituary||Rennard, Tom (09/03/1883 - 12/04/1951)||View Record||Obituary||Rennard, Vivian (02/06/1920 - 11/09/2013)||View Record||Historical||Rennard Ranch History||View Record|