Mertia Ann Nelson was born August 8, 1926 in Baker, North Dakota to Eric Edstrom and Bertha Zuella Smith Nelson, the sixth of eight children. She attended elementary and high school in Baker, graduating in 1942 from Baker High School. Upon the death of her father in 1942, the family moved to Salmon, Idaho.
Mertia attended the University of Idaho from 1945-47 and then taught at Geertson Creek near Salmon in a one-room school for grades one through eight. She returned to the University of Idaho in the fall of 1948.
Mertia and Fred Kohl met while he was on leave from the Army Air Corps training, having been introduced by their sisters. After the war they began dating and then married on October 23, 1948 in Walla Walla, Washington.
Among her hobbies and special interests were sewing, embroidery, cooking, crossword puzzles and loving her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. She was a 4-H Club leader for many years while her husband was a County Agricultural Agent. Starting in 1971, she began making stuffed toys and dolls- including an estimated 500 “Raggedy Anns”. Beginning in 1985, she worked one afternoon each month with two other women making stuffed toys for the Christmas “Sharing Tree” for needy children. Each year they turned out about 40 toys. She was an expert seamstress and made numerous costumes and other items for her children and grandchildren. For 15 years or more she conducted weekly sewing classes for girls.
She was a member of the Gideons Auxiliary, Friendly Neighbors and NARFE, and a longtime member of Christ Church of Moscow.
Survivors include a daughter, Alice (Dave) Dlouhy of Austin, TX and a son David (Janice) Kohl of Moscow. She also leaves seven grandchildren, Jason and Alex Fuehrer, Devon Frank, Jade Miller, Mary Dohrmann, Brian Kohl and Kallie Kohl as well as 14 great grandchildren and a sister, Mescal Kistler.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 67 years, Fred, last December, a daughter, Freddie Anne Fuehrer and brothers Nels, Grant, Robert and William Nelson and sisters, Vendle Nelson and Almira Capps.
The family suggests that memorials be made to Gideons International or to Logos School.
Burial was held at the Moscow Cemetery next to Fred. A memorial service will be held at Trinity Reformed Church on Palouse River Drive on Saturday, February 27th at 3:30 P.M. With a luncheon and time of fellowship to follow.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Short’s Funeral Chapel, Moscow, and online condolences may be sent to www.shortsfuneralchapel.net.