Ellis Bontrager, 82, of Goshen, formerly of Bristol, passed away at 11:06 AM on Sunday, September 5 at Greencroft Health Care, Goshen, after a long battle with cancer. He was born on March 11, 1939 in LaGrange County to Ora J. and Katie Fry Bontrager. On September 20, 1959 in Goshen, he married Ruby Bontrager. Survivors include his wife, three children, Keith & Janet Bontrager, Syracuse, Roger & Clara Bontrager, Glendale, AZ, Valerie Bontrager, Glendale, AZ; four grandchildren; Alex & Kara Korenstra, Connor Bontrager, Clay & Sidney Bontrager, Chloe Bontrager, two great grandchildren; seven brothers, Elvie & Ruby Bontrager of Goshen, Allen & Jackie Bontrager, Casa Grande, AZ, Elroy & Mickey Bontrager of Goshen, Albert & Patty Bontrager of Wakarusa, Verlo & Linda Bontrager, LaGrange, Cletus & Brenda Bontrager, LaGrange, Marlin & Brenda Bontrager, Auburn; five sisters, Ada Schrock, Bemidji, MN, Mary Colwell, Brandon, MS, Ola Cosby, Charlotte, MI, Bessie Lehman, Duncan, SC, Velma & Jim Larimer, Fairview, MI. He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Eldon Bontrager; three brothers-in-law, Omer Cosby, Larry Lehman, and Dave Schrock. Ellis earned his B.S. degree from Goshen College and his M.A. in Education from UNM, University of New Mexico. He taught elementary level for 30 years, both in Albuquerque, New Mexico and Edwardsburg, Michigan Public Schools. He was a Member of Bonneyville Mennonite Church where he served in congregational leadership, was active in the Stephen Ministry Program and as a youth sponsor. He volunteered for many years for the Bonneyville Days festival and served with MDS which is Mennonite Disaster Service. He was known for his carpenter skills and was never afraid to try new adventures or take on new projects. Visitation will be from 2:00 to 8:00 pm on Wednesday, September 8, at Miller-Stewart Funeral Home, 1003 S. Main Street Middlebury. A private graveside service will be held at Clinton Union Cemetery, Goshen prior to the 11:00 am memorial service on Thursday, September 9, at Bonneyville Mennonite Church, Bristol. It is requested that a facial covering be worn during all services. Services will be conducted by Pastor Mariah Martin. Memorials may be given to Mennonite Mission Network.
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