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Raymond Ernst Nuetzman


1922 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
Raymond Ernst Nuetzman Obituary
The Reverend Raymond Ernst Nuetzman of Estes Park Colorado passed to his Heavenly home on Tuesday, December 30th, 2014 at the age of 92 years. 
Ray or "Papa Ray" spent his entire life preparing for his journey to join his Father by being a disciple of Christ.  His ministry began as a young man in Columbus, Nebraska during which he was a lay minister for the Methodist church.  Upon returning to Nebraska Wesleyan University after assisting his father as a farmer during the 2nd World War, Ray felt a call to serve the Lord as a full time clergyman for the Methodist Church.  During his college years and after he served as a pastor in Brainard, Rogers, and Schuyler Nebraska. He gained his Masters in Theology from Iliff School of Theology of Denver Colorado in the mid 50's while pastoring in downtown Colorado Springs at St. Paul's Methodist Church.  In 1962 Ray returned to Nebraska to serve the St. Edward Methodist Church for 5 years and then was the pastor at the Seward Nebraska United Methodist Church for 11 years, building a new church for the newly merged Methodist and E.U.B. congregations.  He was the longest serving pastor of the Seward United Methodist Church. 
For many years Pastor Ray was the Conference Secretary for the Nebraska United Methodist Conference in Lincoln. In 1973 Ray was appointed to serve as the Central District Superintendent of the United Methodist Conference with his office in Kearney, Nebraska.  After 6 years in this capacity he remained in Kearney as the Associate Pastor at the First United Methodist Church for 6 years.  Following this appointment Ray became the first chaplain at Methodist Memorial Homes in Holdrege, Nebraska where he had previously spent many years as a board member.  He also witnessed to two small rural churches, Haven's Chapel United Methodist north of Kearney and Bethel United Methodist near Gibbon, Nebraska.  In later years Ray assisted in many ways at the YMCA Church of the Rockies in Estes Park, Colorado.  During the 7 decades of his ministry he officiated at 368 marriages, 318 funeral services, 235 baptisms and participated in countless ways as a shepherd to God's people.  

            Raymond Ernst Nuetzman was born on November 16, 1922 on a farm north of Columbus, Nebraska to Ernest Julius and Katherine (Schroeder) Nuetzman.  He was the youngest of 2 children with an older sister Lorine (Nuetzman) Mueller.  His High School graduation was from Columbus High School in 1940.   He received his degree in Religion and Journalism from Nebraska Wesleyan University in 1952.  Post graduation Ray served the church in Schuyler, Nebraska where he met and married his wife of 61 years, JoAnn (Chudomelka) Nuetzman on October 27th, 1953.  To this union 2 children were born:  Deborah Rae (Nuetzman) Soneson and Suzanne Jo (Nuetzman) Mayo.  They lived in Schuyler, NE., Colorado Springs, CO., St. Edward, NE., Seward, NE., Kearney, NE., and Estes Park, Colorado full time since 1991.

            Ray was involved in many community and church organizations including Kiwanis where he served as president, countless church committees and collegiant organizations, served on the board of Methodist Memorial Homes in Holdrege, NE., on the board of Camp COMECA in Cozad, NE. and conducted camps for youth at Camp Fontanelle in Nebraska.  Ray was a radio broadcaster for the Church of the Air in Estes Park with a Sunday morning music program and officiated at 110 wedding ceremonies while living in Estes Park during his retirement years.  He assisted his daughter Suzie at her store, Peaks Hallmark as well as working with his son-in-law Gerald as a Real Estate Statistical Analyst at Prudential Team Realty. He longed to retire in his beloved Rocky Mountains, loved to travel the world with Jo,enjoyed watching the Huskers and the Broncos, always did statistics while watching basketball games, enjoyed his puppies, wrote poetry, and was so proud and encouraging of his family.  He is our Hero and our Precious Beloved Papa.

             Missing him are his wife of 61 years JoAnn Nuetzman, his daughters Suzie (Nuetzman) Mayo and her husband Gerald of Estes Park CO, Deborah Rae (Nuetzman) Soneson and her husband Jeff of Holdrege, NE, 2 grandchildren, Kirsten Rachel Soneson and her fiancé' Angel Hernandez III of New York City, NY and Evan Jeffrey Soneson of Lincoln, NE., a special great grandson Hudson Mayo of Whittier, California, a sister Lorine (Nuetzman) Mueller of Kansas, and lifelong friend and classmate at Iliff, Uncle Frank Gunter of Estes Park as well as neighbors, former members of his congregations, and dear and loving friends.  Papa Ray touched the lives of an endless number of people including the staff and the residents of his last ministry at Prospect Mountain Living Center in Estes Park.  His Loving Witness continues...........

                A private Family service was held on Saturday, January 3, 2015.   The Memorial Service will be held at a later date.  The Family requests that memorials be made to the donor's choice.
Published in Estes Park Trail-Gazette on Jan. 20, 2015
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