Francel L. Rietz
Francel L. Irvine Rietz
Francel L. Rietz was born in Wheatland, Wyo. on March 15, 1921. Her father was an Irish immigrant and he and her mother ranched in Platte County. She was a lifetime resident of Platte County. Francel was married to Phil Rietz on September 12, 1938 in Kimball, Neb.
Francel was an active 4-H leader, Republican Committee Woman, Garden Club member, Hobby Club member and a 50 year member of Eastern Star. A member of First Christian Church, Francel taught Sunday School for several years. She was honored as Ranch Woman of the Year by Platte County Cattlewomen. Francel and Phil acted as foster parents, providing children in need with a loving home and positive influence. Francel was her husband of 50 years' partner in the ranching business in every way. Following his death, she continued ranching at the family ranch until it was necessary to move into town, at which time she continued to run the ranch from a distance. She loved horses and in later life adopted wild horses. The Platte County Fair was an important part of her life. She was a Floral Judge flower arranger, poet and songwriter. During her life, she published three poetry books.
Francel was preceded in death by her husband, Phil Rietz; parents and one son. She has left behind her brother James Irvine, her son Clayton Rietz of Wheatland, daughter Clara Powers of Lusk, eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. Donations may be made to the Palmer Canyon Rural Fire Department, First Christian Church and the Church at Jay Em.
Services were held Friday, August 5, 2005 at the First Christian Church in Wheatland with Pastor Andy Gudahl officiating.