Bernita Mae Barnes was one of thirteen children born to Phillip and Christina (Bertsch) Bender. She was born on the family farm near Fulton, SD on March 13, 1923. While in high school she moved with her family to Mitchell, SD. On March 17, 1942 she married Donald R. Barnes at Hartington, NE. They raised three children.
Bernita was proud of her long time clerical employment with J.C. Penney & Co. Throughout her life she pursued her love of art, specializing in oil portraits and landscapes. Sewing was another of her pastimes. She was a member of the First Reformed Church.
She is survived by three sons: Tobin Barnes and wife, Jeannie of Spearfish, SD, Don Barnes and wife, Kate of Sioux Falls, SD, and Bernie Barnes and wife, Judy of Mitchell, SD; five grandchildren and eleven great grandchildren; a brother Ed Bender of Mitchell, SD; her dear friends, Fauna and Randy Kappenman, Mary Luckett and numerous nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband Donald (1/1978); her parents and numerous brothers and sisters.
Memorials may be directed to the Mitchell Area Safehouse, 1809 North Wisconsin Street, Mitchell, SD.