Georgia M. Tessness, 93, of Belle Fourche died Wednesday, December 26, 2012, at the Rapid City Regional Hospital.

Georgia Tessness
Georgia Tessness

Posted Jan. 4, 2013

Georgia M. Tessness, 93, of Belle Fourche died Wednesday, December 26, 2012, at the Rapid City Regional Hospital.

She was born June 3, 1919, in Karinen, South Dakota to Harlem “Harry” and Mary (Slough) Wilson. She grew up on her parents’ ranch in Harding County, attended Country School and worked on the ranch herding sheep.

Georgia married Rudolph R. Tessness on October 12, 1937. They made their home in the Black Hills and Panned for Gold as income. Later they moved to Harding County to herd sheep on a large ranch. Their home was a sheep wagon where their son, Lester was born. In 1948 they bought a house in Buffalo and moved it to Belle Fourche, where they lived out their life. Most recently Georgia was living with her daughter in Rapid City.

She was a master at ironing and cleaned homes for people. She worked at Ben Franklin and for 20 years worked at Motive Parts, until retiring. Following retirement she worked at the Tri-State Museum and volunteered her time at the Senior Citizen Center.

She enjoyed reading and could often be heard whistling a tune. She enjoyed crocheting and watching the Price Is Right and other game shows. She exercised religiously at the Rec Center with friends, and afterwards they would go for donuts and coffee.

Georgia was a life long member of the First Baptist Church, where she taught Sunday- School to the pre-school children for many years with Marilyn Dobesh. At one time she was a member of the Rebecca Lodge in Belle Fourche.

She is survived by her sons, Lester (Marcia) Tessness of North Branch, MN and Melvin (Connie) Tessness of Marysville, WA; daughter, Dalonda Franke of Rapid City; grandchildren, Duane Tessness, Darrell Tessness, Tim Tessness, Duane Gordon, Jason Franke, Joshua Franke, Jennifer Franke and Jared Franke; 12 great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Harry and Mary Wilson; husband, Rudolph Tessness; sons, Lyle Tessness and Duane Tessness; grandson, Todd Tessness; brothers, Myron Wilson and Eugene Wilson; sisters, Lydia Colvell, Stella Vance, Emily Alverson and Mabel Storlie; son-in-law, Jack Franke.

Visitation was Monday and Tuesday, December 31 and January 1, at Kline Funeral Chapel in Belle Fourche.

Funeral services were held Wednesday, January 2nd, at the First Baptist Church in Belle Fourche with the Reverend Tim Smith officiating. Burial followed at Pine Slope Cemetery in Belle Fourche.

The family suggests memorials to the First Baptist Church or to the Senior Citizen Center in Belle Fourche.

An online guest book is available at www.klinefuneralchapel. com.


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