Obituaries, February 9, 2024

Written on 02/09/2024

Nelda J. Lovelace

Nelda J. Lovelace, a woman of extraordinary strength, grace, and compassion, peacefully departed this world on February 6, 2024, in her hometown of Kokomo, Indiana. Born on August 28, 1931, to Ansel and Ruth Brower, Nelda was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Robert, her parents, and her sister, Phyllis Henry.

Nelda's legacy of love and selflessness lives on through her surviving family. She is survived by her devoted daughter, Beth Anne (Tim) Sheets, and cherished grandchildren Jennifer (Taylor) Fife and Michael (Valerie) Sheets. Nelda's love also extends to seven great-grandchildren, who were the source of immense joy in her life. Beyond bloodlines, she leaves behind two former high school exchange students from Germany and their families, Gaby (Lutz) Bauer and Elizabeth (Sisi) Grap, whom she fondly referred to as daughters.

Nelda was a beacon of strength and independence, exemplified by her unwavering dedication to caring for her husband, Bob, who went through numerous heart surgeries over the course of their marriage. Her life was a testament to the teachings of her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, as she served unselfishly in the Judson Baptist Church, a community to which she belonged since childhood. In her various roles as a Sunday School teacher, Vacation Bible School leader, and American Baptist Woman’s Association member, Nelda touched the lives of many with her genuine warmth and wisdom.

Her generosity knew no bounds. Nelda was a blessing to those who knew her, consistently reaching out to visit and comfort those who were suffering from illness or in need. Her altruistic spirit extended beyond personal connections as she gave both her time and resources to numerous charitable causes, always placing others ahead of herself.

Nelda was a 50-year plus member of Order of the Eastern Star serving as district deputy for a time and forging many life-long friendships. She dedicated over 40 years of her life to Delco Electronics in Kokomo, where her hard work and commitment left an indelible mark on her work family. Her coworkers fondly remember her as not just a colleague but a true friend.

In honoring the memory of Nelda J. Lovelace, let us remember the loving nature and boundless generosity that defined her. May her legacy inspire us all to live with open hearts, loving Jesus and selflessly serving those around us. She will be dearly missed, but her spirit will continue to shine brightly in the hearts of all who were touched by her love and kindness.

Nelda’s family would like to extend a special thank you to the entire staff at Waterford Place and the special team from Guardian Angel Hospice for their compassionate care in her time of need.

Friends are invited to visit with the family from 4 to 7 pm Friday February 9, 2024, at Judson Baptist Church, 1995 North 750 West, Kokomo, IN 46901. Funeral service will be held at 10:30 am on Saturday February 10, 2024, at the church with Pastor Rob Marcus officiating. Burial will follow in South Union Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests donations be made to the Judson Baptist Church, World Gospel Mission c/o Deirdre Graham memo: Deirdre 03954, mailing address PO Box 948, Marion, IN 46952, or a charity of your choice in Nelda's name, continuing the legacy of love and compassion she so beautifully embodied throughout her life. Stout & Son Funeral Home – Russiaville Chapel has been entrusted with arrangements.

Pamela Kay Stover

Pamela Kay Stover, 67, of Kokomo, Indiana, passed away February 7, 2024. She was born on January 14, 1957, in Kokomo, IN the daughter of Durwood and Mary J. Whiteman (Stewart).

Pam worked at ACM Molding for 22 years and Haynes International for ten years. She loved her animals and enjoyed spending time with her family and friends. Pam was a people person and enjoyed helping others and having a good time. She loved listening to music and watching old movies and documentaries.

Surviving relatives include her mother, Mary J. Whiteman; sister, Vicki Whiteman; brother, Donald Whiteman (Lisa); significant other, Bill Henson; nephew, Zachary Whiteman (fiancée Amber Moore); all of Kokomo, IN; niece, Morgan Whiteman of Indianapolis, IN.

She was preceded in death by her father and husband of 25 years David Stover.

Visitation will be 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Monday, February 12, 2024, at Sunset Memory Garden Funeral Home 2097 West Alto Road, Kokomo, IN 46902. Funeral services 12:00 PM Monday, February 12, 2024, at the funeral home. Share a memory with the family at Memorial contributions can be made to the Kokomo Humane Society.

Betty L. Burns

Betty L. Burns, 83, Bringhurst, passed away at 8:41 pm on Sunday, February 4, 2024, at her home. She was born on June 1, 1940, to the late Harley and Bessie (Jackson) Rosa. She married Paul E. Burns on November 24, 1961, and he preceded her in death on July 1, 2019.

Betty loved spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren. She enjoyed crafting, quilting, cooking, and sewing.

Betty is survived by her daughters, Becky Kellar of Lafayette, and Regina Kennedy (Roger Rush) of Flora; grandchildren, Corey (Brittany) Eilers, Coty Kennedy, Coby Rush, Kayla (Rick) Kellar, Jeff Kellar, and Brad Kellar; bonus granddaughters, Rachel Yager, and Michelle Conley; great-grandchildren, Dani Eilers, Jenna Gerten, Natalie Gerten, Nova Eilers, Larry Glisson, Jillian Glisson, Erica Glisson, Jordan Becker, Zander Becker, Adrianah Everhart, Kaitlyn LeCount , Jazmyn Yager, Landen Conley, Jada Kellar, Elizabeth, Crystal, and Destiny.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband; five sisters, JoAnn, Carol, Sandy, Pat, and Ruth; two brothers, Jack, and Walter “Junior”.

A funeral service will be held at 1:30 pm on Tuesday, February 13, 2024, at Stout & Son Funeral Home, 200 E Main St, Russiaville, with Pastor Shaun DuFault officiating. Burial will follow in Burlington Cemetery. Friends may visit with the family from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm on Tuesday at the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Heart Association, Burlington Kiwanis Club, or the American Cancer Society. Messages of condolence may be left online at

Penny Jo Johnson

Penny Jo Johnson, 70, of Kokomo, IN passed away February 8, 2024. She was born on April 8, 1953, in Kokomo, IN the daughter of James Poling Sr. and Patricia Poling (Coulburn).

Penny retired from Delco Electronics in Kokomo after 27 years of service. She enjoyed volunteering at the Bingo Hall and traveling. Penny was very family oriented and never met a stranger.

She was survived by her loving husband Daniel Johnson; daughters, Kelly Hudson and Jennifer Norfleet (Jesse); grandchildren, Nicholas, Josh, Jessica, Jaden; sister and brother, Jimmy Poling (Reggie) and Sherry Hudson (Glenn); and was Aunt Penny to Heather Marie Cox (Jerry) and Christopher Glenn Hudson (Kristy) and several other nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, and Elvis Presley.

A memorial gathering will be from 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM on Thursday, February 15, 2024, at Ellers Mortuary and Cremation Center 3400 South Webster Street, Kokomo, IN 46902.

Ronald Wesley Rabbits

Ronald Wesley Rabbits, a man of many talents and boundless passion, passed away peacefully on February 1, 2024, in Kokomo, Indiana, at the age of 59. Born on May 21, 1964, in Watsonville, California, to Sandra "Carol" Rabbits and the late John "Jack" Rabbits, Ronald's vibrant spirit and loving nature touched the lives of all who knew him.

Ronald, affectionately known as Ron by his friends and family, was a graduate of Haworth High School, class of 1982. His zest for life and learning led him down a diverse career path. He was a skilled craftsman who remodeled homes with an artist's touch, a union painter who took pride in his work, a courageous firefighter who served his community, a dedicated truck driver who traversed the country, and a creative tattoo artist who left his mark on both skin and hearts. His work ethic and dedication to his trades were only matched by his commitment to his loved ones and his involvement in his community.

Ron's interests were as varied as his career choices. Motorcycle riding was not just a hobby but a passion that fueled his free spirit. He found solace in the roar of the engine and the wind on his face as he explored the open road. Fishing and camping were also pursuits that brought him great joy, especially when shared with his family. Ron's happiest moments were those spent surrounded by his loved ones, creating memories that would be cherished forever.

Described by those who knew him best as loving, passionate, and handy, Ron was a man who could fix almost anything and was always willing to lend a helping hand. His love knew no bounds, and he was a source of strength and comfort to his family and friends.

Ron is survived by his adoring mother, Sandra "Carol" Rabbits; his beloved daughter, Kaylee Moon (Jacob); his stepson, Patrick Gump; his cherished grandchildren, Arlo Rabbits, Brook-Lynn Moon, Jacob Moon, Jordyn Moon, Gauge Kendall, Londyn Eldridge, and Blaine Eldridge; his caring sister, Jodi Bitner; and several nieces and nephews who will miss his guidance and warmth. His life was enriched by the love of his girlfriend, Peggy Arnold, who stood by him with unwavering support.

Ron was preceded in death by his father, John "Jack" Rabbits; his daughter, Tiffany Kendall; his sister, Terri Ross; and his wife, Louchelle Rabbits. Each of them held a special place in his heart, and he carried their memories with him every day.

Ronald Wesley Rabbits lived a life full of love, adventure, and service. His legacy will live on through the lives he touched, the work he accomplished, and the memories he created with those who loved him. As we say goodbye to this remarkable man, we take comfort in knowing that his spirit will continue to inspire us to live fully, love deeply, and help others whenever we can.

A life so beautifully lived deserves to be beautifully remembered. Ron, you will be deeply missed, but never forgotten. Your journey on earth has ended, but your story will continue in the hearts of all who were privileged to know you. Rest in peace, dear Ronald, until we meet again.

A Celebration of Life for Ron will take place Saturday, February 17, at Crossroads Community Church Downtown; 116 North Main Street in Kokomo at 4:00 pm with Pastor Luke Smith officiating.

Laura Irene Hiatt

Laura Irene Hiatt, 92, of Kokomo, Indiana, passed away on Wednesday, February 7, 2024. Laura was born October 3, 1931, in Kokomo.

She owned and operated her own daycare out of her home in Burlington. She loved children and treated every single one of them like her own. She especially enjoyed coloring with them and teaching them. After her daycare closed, she went on to work at the Kinsey Center as a supervisor. During her free time Laura played in the dirt. She maintained her flower garden with love. She and her husband, Ted, lived at Friendship Haven and helped with their landscaping. She and Ted would consistently "go to music". Everyone would take turns singing and playing instruments on the stage at different venues including friends' homes. She absolutely loved hymns.

Laura is survived by her sons Bill (Tracy) McCartney, Duane Bates, and Shane Bates; 3 grandsons Robbie Bruni, Matt McCartney, and Ty McCartney.

She is preceded in death by her daughter Linda McCartney and her son Russell McCartney; siblings Anna Louise Floyd and Bill Henderson; her mother Anna Hamilton; and 2 former husbands Bob McCartney and Ted Hiatt.

In honor of Laura's wishes, there will not be a public service.