Judy Gildemaster


Judy Janette (Heckel) Gildemaster, 78, passed away at home in Artesian on Wednesday, Dec. 22, 2021. 

Her funeral service was held on Tuesday, Dec. 28, at the Welter Funeral Home in Huron with burial at the Restlawn Memory Gardens Cemetery. Visitation was Monday, Dec. 27, at the Welter Funeral Home and one hour prior to the service at the funeral home on Tuesday. 

Judy was born on July 30, 1943, in Mitchell, to William Sr. and Caroline (Wiedemer) Heckel. She attended school in Marion, Wessington Springs and Wolsey. Judy married Ronald Gildemaster on June 13, 1959. They lived in Huron until 1969, when they moved to Artesian and started farming. While living in Huron, Judy worked at the Huron Hospital as a nurse’s aide. When Judy wasn’t working in town, she was a vital part of the family farm.

After Ron and Judy moved into the town of Artesian, Judy took up a job at the Thunderbird Lodge in Mitchell. Her last job before retiring was at the Wal-Mart in Mitchell. She was an avid gardener and an amazing cook. She enjoyed candy, reading and a good sale. Judy loved spending time with her family.  

Judy is survived by her husband, Ronald; children, Kurt (Diane) of Sioux Falls, Kim McCombs of Post Falls, Idaho, Todd (Sandra) of Scottsbluff, Neb., Brett (Cheryl) of Sioux Falls, Nikki (Eric) Trujillo of Mission Viejo, Calif., Misti Gildemaster (Ben McClure) of Meridian, Idaho, and Jody (Nate) Clark of Watertown; 22 grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren with another one due soon; brother-in-law, Larry (Carol) Gildemaster; two sisters-in-law, Judith Gross and Debbie Travis; and many other friends and family.

Judy was preceded in death by her parents; her mother- and father-in-law; brothers, Robert Warren and Bill Heckel Jr.; her sister, Sharon Larsen; brothers-in-law, Alan Gildemaster and Randy Travis; and grandsons, Levi McCombs and Max Gildemaster.

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