Obituary: Luetta Dressler Bergevin
September 3, 2013
Luetta (Lue) Dressler Bergevin passed away peacefully on the morning of August 24,2013,
surrounded by her family. She was 91. Her husband, Louis, Carson Valley rancher and long-time state
Assemblyman, preceded her in death.
Luetta D. Bergevin , a fourth generation Nevadan, was born on September 6, 1921, on the Dressler Home Ranch, to Fred H. and Anna (Neddenriep) Dressler. Luetta was the last baby delivered by her great great aunt Dr Eliza Cook, Nevada's first woman physician.
She developed an early appreciation for the beauty of the outdoors, having spent the first years of her life on the
family cattle ranch that encompassed parts of Carson
Valley and Alpine and Mono Counties in California.
At the age of seven, she boarded in Centerville at the home of John and Mildred Drendel in order to attend the Centerville School. Due to consolidation, she
continued her education the following year at the Minden Grammar School where she graduated from the eighth grade in 1936 as Valedictorian of her Class.
She graduated from Douglas County High School,
Gardnerville, Nevada, where she was an active member of the class of 1940. Luetta served as Secretary of the
Student Body, Editor of the Garminada, and was a
member D.C.H.S. Girls Basketball Team.She continued her education at the University of Utah where she received her B.S.degree in Nursing Education and her degree as a Registered Nurse from St. Marks Hospital School of
Nursing in Salt Lake City. She was a member of Delta, Delta, Delta Sorority and was active in campus life.
During World War II, she worked as a U.S. Naval Cadet Nurse at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Seattle, Washington. Following V.J. Day she returned to St. Marks in Salt Lake City, where she passed her state boards with honors, and was employed as the Head Nurse on the Orthopedic Floor.
In June of 1946, she returned to Gardnerville and in August married her high school sweetheart, Louis
Bergevin. They were married in the old Lutheran Church near Gardnerville by Pastor Paul H. Felten. Following their marriage they lived near Mesa,Arizona, where her
husband was a Captain in the U.S. Airforce at Williams Field,Arizona. After his discharge as a Major, they moved to Reno.
While in Reno, she worked as a Head Nurse on a surgical floor and then as O.B.Supervisor at the Washoe Medical Center (now Renown). In time they moved to the Dressler Ranch and Carson Valley where they would raise their family.
After the move, Luetta did private duty nursing at the Carson-Tahoe Hospital for Dr.Ontie Hovendon and Dr. E. G. Hand. She volunteered at Health Fairs and assisted in giving the first polio injections in Carson Valley. She served on the board of the First Carson Valley Emergency Medical Center. Later she served as a nurse at the Lake Tahoe 4-H camp.
Following her retirement from nursing, she revived her interest in art. She was a member of the Carson Valley Art Association and the East Fork Gallery, serving as President in each. She was also a charter member of the Brewery Arts Center in Carson City.
She loved to paint and worked in oil and watercolor with watercolor being her favorite.She was a self taught artist until her first painting lessons from Geraldine Lawrence. In 1981 she travelled to China with a group of artists who took every opportunity to sit down and paint or sketch while on the trip. They met with Chinese artists and exchanged ideas and techniques. It was an experience she never forgot. Over the years she painted numerous landscapes, florals and other varied subjects. She sold several of her works and her family members each have a favorite.
Aside from her paintings, Luetta was an avid gardner, an incredible cook and a beautiful seamstress. She enjoyed hiking, especially in the mountains of Alpine County
and outlying areas of Nevada. On these hikes she would collect numerous photos that would later be inspirations for many of her paintings.
She was never inactive and her involvement in community life included membership in the Carson Valley Literary Club (Past President), the Nevada State Cattlewomen(formerly Cowbelles) (Past President), Douglas County Republican Women, ParentTeachers' Association, 4-H Leader, 4-H chaperone on educational trips, and she was a lifetime member of the St. Mark's nurses' association. She also served on the Nevada Historical Commission, Nevada 4-H Foundation, Douglas County Historical Society Board and was chairman for the National "Beef for Father's Day" campaign.
She enjoyed working with people and put in many hours assisting her husband in his many campaigns for the Nevada State Assembly.
She was a lifetime member of Trinity Lutheran Church and was a substitute organist for Ruth Felten at the old church and often taught Vacation Bible School.
In April of 2010 she moved to Merrill Gardens Gardnerville where she enjoyed much love, friendship and attention. The family would like to thank all of the wonderful staff at Merrill Gardens along with Linda from Gentiva and Brian from Vista Care Hospice for all of their kindness, efforts and care in making Luetta comfortable.
She is survived by her son Lee (Sharon) Bergevin and his family: Debbie Curry Flaherty(Amber & Chris Weller, Jordan Flaherty), Greg (Jennifer) Curry (Kaitlyn, Joshua & Julianna Curry), Lynda Curry, Shannon Bergevin (Al) Garner (Abigail & Genevieve Garner), Andrew Bergevin and Erin Bergevin; her daughter Jeanne (Todd) Russell and her family: Matthew (Carolyn) Russell (Nathan & Charles Russell), Timothy (Cassidy) Russell (Brynn & Larkin Russell); her brother Frederick Dressler; as well as numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
In addition to her husband, Louis, Luetta was preceded in death by her parents.
A Celebration of Life will be held at Trinity Lutheran Church, 1480 Douglas Avenue,Gardnerville, Nevada, on Sept. September 14, 2013, at 10:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, Luetta would be happy to know that she inspired donations in her name to the Douglas County Historical Society, 1477 Hwy 395, Suite B, Gardnerville, NV 89410 or the East Fork Gallery, 1503 Hwy 395 N, Suite K, Gardnerville, NV 89410