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 • Floresville
 • Wilson County
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Maria Erna "Mary" Schneider Bauch
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Birth: Sep. 8, 1909
Death: Apr. 26, 2007


Maria "Mary" Erna Schneider Bauch, a resident of Chugiak, Alaska, since 1987, entered into eternal rest Thursday, April 26, 2007, in the Chugiak Senior Center in Chugiak at the age of 97 years, 7 months, and 18 days.

Mary was born to Edward and Mary Schneider in Colorado County, Texas, near Houston on Sept. 8, 1909. Her mother, Mary, was born to a German family, who settled near Galveston, in 1856. In 1883, her father came to America, from Wiesbaden, Germany, when he was 13. They were farmers, and were self-educated through their love of reading.

In 1921, her father ran a cotton gin. That year there was a bumper crop, and the cotton gin ran 24 hours a day. Shortly after that, they rented a farm near Floresville.

When they moved from Colorado County, they stayed with an aunt while they waited for the midnight train. When they were leaving, her aunt hugged her so hard, Mary couldn't catch her breath. She was sure she'd never see her aunt again. The drivers and steam and smoke around the train scared her, but they arrived near Poth safely. From the train station, they drove to the farm in a hack, a two-seated buggy. Mary marveled at the Mexicans camped out in their tents.

Mary went to a one-room schoolhouse through the eighth grade. She continued her education by reading. At home, the family spoke a mixture of German and English; just a hint of that accent remained with Mary throughout her lifetime.

There were always chores to do. One time, while Mary was milking the cow, lightning struck the fence. The cow's nose was touching the barbed wire and the electricity went through to Mary. They went rolling around the cow pen and when they finally stopped, Mary couldn't talk for two days. All she could do was cry.

When Mary was seven years old, during World War I, every school had a flag and flagpole. Mary learned the pledge of allegiance, and she was taken by one of the rich rancher's wives in a chauffeur-driven car to another school so she could demonstrate her skills.

More than 78 years ago, Mary married Fred Ziese on Sept. 20, 1928. It was during the Great Depression, so they moved in with her father and mother. A few years later, they moved to San Antonio with her best friend, Lydia, and shared a home with Lydia and her husband.

There was always work, but not much money. Mary remembered being in San Antonio, and seeing the lines of people waiting to get their money when the banks failed. Mary observed many people waiting in line, and some came away empty-handed when the money ran out. Mary was not in those lines because they had no extra cash to have in the banks.

Fred and Mary had one daughter, Shirley, who was born in 1936. Soon after, World War II brought lots of work. Fred was a carpenter, and at that time worked building barracks for the military. He was sent down around the coast of Texas, where, in 1943, he contracted typhus from a mosquito and died at the age of 36.

Mary still remembered the blaring firehouse sirens signalling the nightly blackouts. Sometimes, they heard large flights of airplanes, and the townspeople wondered if they were American or German.

After Fred died, Mary went to beauty school, and got her operator's license.

On Aug. 24, 1945, she married Thomas Bauch, and was able to be a stay-at-home mother again. Her daughter, Shirley, said her mother sewed all of her clothes when she was in school, and made her own as well. Mary's husband, Thomas, died in 1980.

Mary visited Shirley in Anchorage, Alaska, every summer for years. In 1987, after Shirley's husband passed away, she was able to convince her mother to finally move to Alaska. Before Mary moved, she made miniature dollhouses, which she gave to her nieces before leaving.

Mary and Shirley lived together at the Chugiak Senior Center for the past 10 years. Mary loved crafting picture frames, and always believed in taking life one day at a time. She attributed her longevity to eating oatmeal and bananas every day. Mary enjoyed a full life.

In addition to Mary's daughter, Shirley Nowotny, Mary is survived by numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her two husbands; her sisters, Alma Stoeltje, Annie Sohr, and Clara Kasper; and her brothers, Eddie Schneider, John Schneider, Alfred Schneider, Ben Schneider, and Helmuth Schneider, and one infant brother.

A family rosary was recited at 10 a.m. Thursday, May 3, and a funeral Mass was celebrated at 10:30 a.m. in the Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in Poth, Texas, officiated by Father Grzegorz Szewczyk.

Interment followed in the Sacred Heart Cemetery in Floresville. Serving as pallbearers were E.J. Kasper, Lee Roy Schneider, Leo Schneider, Helmuth Schneider Jr., Michael Hill, and Fred Janszen. Other nieces and nephews served as honorary pallbearers.

Sacred Heart Cemetery
Wilson County
Texas, USA
Created by: West Texas Angel "Lisa"
Record added: Sep 25, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 30065113
Maria Erna Mary <i>Schneider</i> Bauch
Added by: Anonymous
Maria Erna Mary <i>Schneider</i> Bauch
Cemetery Photo
Added by: H M G
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To a great lady I don't know you but I bet you was the greatest mother,grandmother
- West Texas Angel "Lisa"
 Added: Sep. 25, 2008

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