Mount Ayr Record-News
Mount Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa
Thursday, January 25, 2007
OBITUARY - RETHA MAY (MOSTINGER) FRENCH
Retha was the oldest daughter of William & Lois MOTSINGER. She was born in the family country home near Benton, Iowa
and lived her whole life in Ringgold County except for one year when her family relocated to Colorado.
She attended numerous rural schools before graduating from Kellerton High School and then continued her education in
preparation for a teaching career. After completing her studies she taught in 3 rural schools; Salem, Flowery Glen,
and Side Hill.
William H. "Bill" FRENCH and Retha MOTSINGER were united in marriage August 5, 1949 and were devoted companions for
Retha was a talented artist with the ability to teach her skills to numerous students during the time she owned and
operated an art and craft studio. Her love of children enabled her to be a devoted mother and advocate for the health
and well being of every child. She was baptized in the Kellerton Christian Church and was faithful, being called to
teach Sunday school at many age levels, pre-school, Junior and Senior High, and older ladies classes. Retha passed
away on January 21, 2007 at the Health Care Center in Mount Ayr.
Those who preceded her in death were her father, William "Bill" MOTSINGER; mother Lois MOTSINGER; and one brother
Family remaining to cherish her memory include her husband William H. "Bill" FRENCH; her two sons William Jeffrey
FRENCH and Robert Howard FRENCH; one daughter Amy Lois DUNN and husband Paul; 7 grandchildren Cory FRENCH & wife
Jenn, LaShay, Chase, and Austin FRENCH, Ryan STILL & wife Pam, Caitlyn STILL, and Aurora DUNN; 3 great-grandchildren
Brooke and Taylor FRENCH and Trenton STILL; 2 sisters Rose Marie MERRILL & husband Dean and Judy MINNICK & husband
Lyle; nieces, nephews, her church family and friends unnumbered.
Retha will always be remembered for putting her family and friends first. Many in the community will recall her
volunteerism and championship of the underdog. She taught many people to express their creativity through hours
spent conducting painting lessons. Faith through works was how she lived her life. She will be missed by all she
touched with her joy for life and ability to have fun wherever she went.
Services were held on Wednesday, January 24, 2007, at 10:30 a.m., First Christian Church of Mount Ayr, Iowa.
Transcription by Sharon R. Becker, October of 2009
Creston News Advertiser
Creston, Union County, Iowa
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
OBITUARY - RETHA (MOTSINGER) FRENCH
Retha FRENCH, 78, of Mount Ayr died January 21, 2007, at Mount Ayr Health Care Center.
Services will be 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, January 24, at the First Christian Church in Mount Ayr. The Rev. John BRILLO will
officiate the service. Burial will be in Rose Hill Cemetery at Mount Ayr. Open visitation will be after 11 a.m. Tuesday
with the family present 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at Wilson-Watson and Armstrong Funeral Home, 205 W. Monroe St., Mount Ayr.
Memorials may be directed to the First Christian Church in Mount Ayr.
Retha FRENCH, daughter of Lois (HASS) and William L. MOTSINGER, was born April 17, 1928, in Benton. She graduated from
Kellerton High School in 1946. On August 5, 1949, Retha married William H. "Bill" FRENCH at the Kellerton Christian
Church. She was an artist and owner of an art shop. She was a member of the First Christian Church in Mount Ayr.
Survivors include her husband, William H. "Bill" FRENCH of Mount Ayr; two sons, Jeff FRENCH and Bob FRENCH, both of Mount
Ayr; daughter Amy (husband Paul) DUNN of State Center; two sisters, Rose (husband Dean) MERRILL and Judy (husband Lyle)
MINNICK, all of Kellerton; seven grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
Retha was preceded in death by her parents and brother Robert MOTSINGER.