Springis, Rev. Fritz (died 1964)
Posted By: Linda Ziemann, volunteer (email)
Date: 3/12/2020 at 14:42:54
LeMars Sentinel, February 18, 1964
[Photograph Included of the Pastor]
Former Seney Pastor Dies in Car Enroute from Funeral
Rev. Fritz Springis, 70, former pastor of Seney and Ireton Methodist churches, who retired a year ago to Gilmore City, died Monday afternoon after suffering a heart attack while returning by car from attending a funeral at Spirit Lake.
Rev. Springis was alone in the vehicle, which overturned in a ditch about 4 miles north of Pocahontas. He was southbound on highway 71 when the accident occurred about 6:30 p.m.
It was first reported Rev. Springis was killed in the car accident. Rev. Milo Morris, pastor of the First Methodist Church here, today reported the cause of death was a heart attack.
Rev. Morris was notified of Rev. Springis’ death while attending the annual Chamber of Commerce dinner here Monday evening. Rev. Morris left immediately for Gilmore City, returning early this morning.
Rev. Springis was driving home from Spirit Lake after attending double funeral services for Rev. and Mrs. Duane R. Tritle of Peterson, who were killed Friday night in a one-car accident near Peterson. Mrs. Tritle was a Sioux Center native, and a daughter of the late E. O. Kinsey, former school superintendent there.
Rev. Springis retired from active ministry after recovering from a heart attack suffered the day after Christmas in 1962. He had served the Seney and Ireton charges since 1959, residing at Seney. The couple left here to make their home with a daughter at Gilmore City.
A native of Latvia, Rev. Springis was minister of education for the Latvian government when the Communists took over. Mrs. Springis escaped to Germany and Rev. Springis was imprisoned in a concentration camp. The story of how he escaped the bullets of a firing squad and crawled away from a group of persons being executed in the concentration camp was told by Rev. Springis before many church gatherings in this area while he resided here.
Rev. Springis and his family came to this country in November 1951. He joined the North Iowa conference of Methodist churches in 1952, serving churches at Lakota, Elma and Dunkerton before coming to Seney.
Surviving are his wife, Elizabeth; a daughter, Mrs. Werner Schleimacher, and a grandson, all of Gilmore City, and a son, Andrew, of Blue Ridge, Minn.
Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. Thursday at the Methodist church in Gilmore City, with burial there. Dr. Charles Buckwalter, Methodist church district superintendent, and Rev. S. Hammer, church pastor, will officiate. Rev. Milo Morris will deliver the sermon.
Kossuth County Advance, Algona, Iowa
Thursday, Feb. 20, 1964
Former Lakota, Ledyard Pastor Killed Monday.
The Rev. Fritz Springis, 70, Gilmore City, formerly of Ledyard and Lakota, was killed late Monday in a one-car accident four miles north of Pocahontas.
The accident occurred when he was on his way home from attending a double-funeral at Spirit Lake for the Rev. and Mrs. Duane Tritle, of Peterson, who also had been killed in a one-car accident.
The Rev. Springis had served the Ledyard and Lakota Methodist churches from 1952-1955.
Following a heart attack in Dec. 1962, the Rev. Springis was retired a year ago by the North Iowa Conference of the Methodist church. He and his wife had lived at Dakota City, Ia., with his son-in-law and daughter, the Werner Schlemeiers. A son, Andrit, lives at Blue Earth, MN.
The Rev. Springis was a Methodist pastor in Latvia when it became communistic controlled. He had been in this country 13 years, having escaped from a communist work camp. Six years ago he became a naturalized citizen.
Hawarden Independent, Hawarden, Iowa, February 20, 1964
Dies On Way Home From A Funeral
Rev. Fritz Springis, 70, of Gilmore City, Iowa, former pastor of the Methodist church in Ireton now being served by Dr. G. S. Bruland of Hawarden, died Monday afternoon in a car accident near Pocahontas.
He was alone in the car which overturned in a ditch on Highway 71 enroute home from attending a funeral at Spirit Lake for Rev. and Mrs. Duane R, Tritle of Peterson, Iowa, who were killed Friday night in a one-car accident near Peterson. He was reported to have suffered a heart attack as the direct cause of his death.
Rev. Springis resided at Seney when he had charge of both Seney and Ireton Methodist churches from which duties he retired to Gilmore City more than a year ago, after recovering from a heart attack suffered the day after Christmas in 1962.
A native of Latvia, Rev. Springis was minister of education for the Latvian government when the communists took over. Mrs. Springis escaped to Germany and Rev. Springis was imprisoned in a concentration camp.
Rev. Springis has related before many church and civic gatherings how he escaped the bullets of a firing squad and crawled away from a group of persons executed in the concentration camp. He and his family came to this country in November of 1951. He joined the North Iowa conference of the Methodist church in 1952.
Survivors include the widow, Elizabeth; a daughter, Mr. Werner Schleimacher, and a grandson all of Gilmore City, and a son, Andrew, of Blue Ridge, Minn.
Funeral service will held at 2 o‘clock this afternoon (Thursday) at the Methodist church in Gilmore City with burial there.
Kossuth Obituaries maintained by Linda Ziemann.
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Kossuth Obituaries maintained by Linda Ziemann.