Mardella Lee Graf Klein, 69, of Hot Springs, SD, passed away March 6, 2018, at Rapid City Regional Hospital in Rapid City, SD.
Mardella was born April 6, 1948, in Hot Springs, SD, to Edward and Elizabeth “Betty” Ann (Oellrichs) Graf. She was married to Dennis Klein in 1983 in the Bethesda Lutheran Church, gaining not only a husband but a step-daughter, Katie, and later on giving birth to her son, Nickolas in 1986.
Mardella was a loving mother and step-mother and was affectionately well known as "Mrs. Purple" by many. She was an avid congressional member of the Bethesda Lutheran Church as well as a voter member of the church. Mardella often volunteered in the office of the Bethesda School where she'd greet students and parents alike while assisting Darcy Beougher and later on Lynn Mason with daily tasks. Mardella was in the second generation of the family to have graduated from Hot Springs High School (Class of 1966). After high school and the death of her sister, Sharron, she enrolled and graduated from Chadron State College with a teaching degree majoring in English. After college Mardella spent over 25 years teaching and later substituting as needed in the Hot Springs School District.
Anyone who knew Mrs. Purple knew that she dearly loved purple, purple and more purple! She couldn't get enough of it and was often seen searching yard sales for more purple, grapes and giraffes with her mother, Betty, beside her. She also loved to make bulletin boards to decorate hallways and offices with her personal touch where ever she worked.
Mardella is survived by her son, Nick (Lynda) Graf of Hot Springs; mother, Betty Graf of Hot Springs; step daughter, Katie Klein of Rapid City; sister, Valarie Graf of Hot Springs. Mardella was preceded in death by her father, Edward Graf; sister, Sharron Graf; husband, Dennis Klein.
Visitation will be held from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m., Thursday March 15, 2018, at Chamberlain McColley’s Funeral Home in Hot Springs. Funeral services will be held 10:00 a.m., Friday March 16, 2018, at Bethesda Lutheran Church in Hot Springs with Pastor Gary Jacobsen officiating. Committal services will follow at the Evergreen Cemetery in Hot Springs.
In lieu of flowers a memorial has been established in Mardella’s name to benefit the Bethesda Lutheran Church and School in Hot Springs. Arrangements have been placed in the care of Chamberlain McColley’s Funeral Home in Hot Springs, SD.