About Petersen's

We're caring and experienced professionals who understand that each family is unique and has personal requests and traditions.

We're located on Main Street in Newton, Kansas. We invite you to stop by to browse our facilities, and discuss your pre-planning needs at any time!

Susan M. Rhoades

February 16, 2019

Susan Marie (Schmidt) Rhoades was called home to Jesus on February 16, 2019.  Susan was born on July 23, 1937 in Newton to Mariam (Penner) and Dr. Herbert Schmidt.  Susan was preceded in death by her parents and her older sister, Madalyn (Schmidt) Ensz.  Following graduation from Newton High School in 1955, Susan attended Emporia State University where she received a BS degree in laboratory science.  While at Emporia State she was the president of her sorority, Alpha Sigma Tau.  She met her husband, Keith Rhoades, at Emporia State, and they married on January 30, 1960.  Susan is survived by Keith, their three children and two daughters-in-law, Marc (Denise), Eric (Tammy) and Stacey.  Susan is also survived by her seven grandchildren, Joshua Rhoades (Laura), Justin Rhoades (Ellissa), Tori Rhoades, Lindsay Christopher (Anthony), Hannah Rhoades, Mollie Rhoades and Wesley Rhoades and five great-grandchildren, Genevieve Rhoades, Judah Rhoades, Elaina Rhoades, Madeleine Rhoades and Rhoades Christopher.


Susan worked in the medical field in a number of roles.  She held several positions as a medical lab technologist at Glockner Penrose Hospital in Colorado Springs, the student health clinic at Kansas State University, Bethel Clinic and the Medical Arts practice in Newton.  She also worked in the public relations department at Kidron Bethel.


Susan had a heart for service.  She was a member of many boards including Health Ministries, Bethel College and the Harvey County Historical Society and held various positions at the Bethel College Mennonite Church.  Susan volunteered at the Newton Medical Center, Kauffman Museum, the Et Cetera Shop and Asbury Park (Greenhouses).


Susan developed a love for travel from her parents.  Her trips included a pilgrimage to India with her daughter, Stacey, to visit the locations where her missionary grandfather, P.A. Penner, established churches and a clinic for those afflicted with leprosy.  Susan and Keith traveled to Paraguay on several occasions to visit her parents.  They also made numerous trips to Europe.  Susan traveled with friends to Eastern Europe (formerly known as Prussia) and spent time in the village of her ancestors.  She also enjoyed family reunions with her Ensz nieces and nephews and holiday travel with her children and their families.


Susan also enjoyed time with her friends—whether it was playing bridge or tennis or hosting friends for an outdoor breakfast in the Flint Hills.  She looked forward to reunions with her sorority sisters.  Susan and Keith shared vacations and many celebrations with a group of families they met through the church (Karen and Larry Penner, Lois and Orlando Goertzen, and Deane and Marlin Frey).  They, affectionately, became known as the Beaver Bunch.


A memorial service will be held at Bethel College Mennonite Church on Saturday, February 23 at 3:30 p.m.


In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to The Harvey County Historical Society or the Harry Hynes Memorial Hospice.

Print this obituary

18 thoughts on “Susan M. Rhoades

  1. This is for the Rhoades Family, I want you to know My Thoughts and Prayers with you all during this time.

  2. Dear Susan, safe in the arms of Jesus! Heaven has a beautiful new angel looking after her precious family. Her wonderful families awaits their reunion with her one glorious day. How we can rejoice knowing she is with our Heavenly Father, in perfect peace. She will be missed and forever loved.

  3. Our sincere sympathy to Keith and their three children and many grandchildren.
    Susan was a dear friend to both of us in Newton High School.
    She has, indeed, made this a better world for having lived here.
    David & Marilyn Baird

  4. Not only in Newton in the 50’s, but the Schmidts had dinner with me in Amsterdam in the mid-50’s. Madelyn and Susan were with them. Much has happened since…

  5. She will be missed. Beautiful lady with an amazing family. She was such a loving, caring and humble women. Thoughts and prayers with all those loved her.

  6. Our thoughts and prayers are extended to the Rhoades family. Susan was a gracious and engaging woman. It has been a blessing to know Susan and her family.

  7. There are not enough words to describe Susan Rhoades. She is such a beautiful person through and through. Thank God for the years I was privileged to know her. One day I will see her again and rejoice! Praying God’s comfort and peace for the family.

  8. Our prayers go out to the Rhoades family, especially Stacey, whom we have had opportunity to meet. May God comfort each one of you.

  9. Stacey, my heart is sad for you, today. I had the pleasure of meeting your mother. I know you will miss your Mother greatly. Prayers for you and your family.

  10. Stacey we are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers go out to you and you entire family.

  11. Susan leaves behind many fond memories which will be treasured by many. Our sympathy to the Rhoades family.

  12. Thoughts and prayers to the Rhodes family. Susan was such a special person. She was always so gracious-from letting us take family pictures at the house to fishing in the creek! She will be missed by so many.

  13. Stacy and family we are so sorry to hear of the passing of the matriarch of your family. We send our love and prayers your way. Lots of hugs.

Sign Guestbook

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *