Arthur Cooper Rew Sr., 86, of Mitchell, SD, died unexpectedly at his home in Mitchell, SD on Thursday, February 11, 2021. Funeral services will be 10:30 AM Wednesday, February 17 at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Mitchell. Burial will be at Graceland Cemetery in Mitchell. Visitation will be from 5-7:00 PM Tuesday at Bittner Funeral Chapel. In lieu of flowers, memorials will be distributed to places near and dear to Art’s heart. Arrangements by Bittner Funeral Chapel.
A live-stream of the funeral service may be viewed at:
Arthur C. Rew Sr. was born on a Davison County farm west of Mitchell on March 16, 1934, to George and Harriet Rew, the fourth of seven siblings. Growing up, he enjoyed 4-H, working on the family farm, and was an outstanding varsity basketball player for the Mitchell Kernels. After high school, he attended South Dakota State University for a semester, but his college career was cut short to return home to operate the family farm when his father contracted polio. On July 24, 1955, he married Norma Stahlecker and they had four children together.
Rew's TV & Appliance had its humble beginnings in the basement of Art and Norma’s house as a radio and TV business. The business continued to grow until it found its permanent home on Main Street where he loved serving the community and welcoming all those who walked in the doors. He was also a part owner of KORN Radio for a number of years. Art had a passion for the Mitchell community and was a dedicated public servant. He was the youngest man to be seated on the City Council and at age 32, he was elected the youngest Mayor in Mitchell’s history. At the time, he was also the youngest mayor in the state and the youngest official of the SD Municipal League, which he served as District 5 Chairman. He was a founding member of the Mitchell Exchange Club and The Jaycees. He was South Dakota Jaycee Outstanding Young Man in 1968 and was able to travel to Washington, DC to meet with President Lyndon B. Johnson with other state recipients. A respected community leader, he also served at the YMCA, United Fund, Dakota Wesleyan University Basic Fund Drive, Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors on the Friends of the Middle Border, Quarterback Club, Kernel Booster Club and most anything that promoted the city of Mitchell and Kernel Athletics. He served on the Board of Directors of Fulton State Bank and Sorenson Broadcasting.
Art was a natural leader, excellent salesman and mentor to many over the years.
In 1987, Art married Lois Nolz. Throughout their marriage, they enjoyed many years on Lake Mitchell, tending their garden and lawn. He was especially proud of his Yard of the Month awards. He spent his weekday hours raking the beach, getting the lake toys tuned and ready so that his family could come and enjoy the Lake. Art cherished time with his children and grandchildren, hunting or attending sporting events and activities. He spent mornings solving world problems at Daylight Donuts with his coffee group. He was an active member of St. Mary’s Episcopal church and served many years on the church vestry, most recently as the Senior Warden. Annual Duck Camp with his boys and lifelong buddies was a great joy in Art’s life, which will celebrate its the 50th anniversary this year. Art’s Victory Feeds were legendary. His wisdom and wit will reverberate in his family’s ear for the rest of their lives
Left with his loving memory are his children: Kristine (Mark Benzel) Weatherill of College Place, WA, Rev. Janine (Rev. N. Craig Werling) Rew-Werling of Watertown, SD, Art (Audra) Rew Jr of Mitchell, SD, and Dan (Brenda) Rew of Mitchell, SD; his stepchildren: Sandra Johnston of Omaha, NE, Melissa (Craig) Stricherz of St. Cloud, MN, Jim (Jessica) Nolz of Brandon, SD, and Greg Nolz of Omaha, NE; his grandchildren: Nikki (Ryan) Escobin, Zach (Angela) Nolz, Ashleigh (Rhett) Eilts, Emma Nelsen (Mark Nelsen), Hanna Werling (Ross Fenske), Grant Werling, Amelia (Josh) Endres, Ashton Rew, Elizabeth Rew, Isaac Rew, Kelsey (Matt) Hazard, Allie Johnston, Sydney Stricherz, Brendan Stricherz, Olivia Nolz, and Sam Nolz; great-grandchildren: Mahlaya Escobin, Zavier Escobin, Sophia Nolz, Rory Nolz, Isabella Nolz, Noah Nelsen, Vivian Eilts, Whynstyn Eilts, Leo Hazard, and Kase Endres; siblings: Bob (Katie) Rew, Charlotte (Dave) Streit, Harriet (Larry) Moss, and Bill Rew.
He was preceded in death by his parents, a brother in infancy, David; his wife, Lois; his sisters, Mary and Katherine; step-granddaughter, Brittany Nolz; and stepson-in-law, Jeff Johnson.