Mary Ann Mintle, age 78, passed from this life on Sept. 24, 2017, after a long battle with cancer. She was born June 25, 1939, in Mullen, Nebraska, during a blizzard to Claude Alfred Florea and Mary Elizabeth (Adkins) Florea. She grew up on a ranch south of Thedford, Nebraska, and graduated from Thomas County High School on May 15, 1957, the last graduating class to receive a teaching certificate. After graduation, she taught school at Woodlake, northeast of Thedford, and at a rural school near Chambers, Nebraska. Mary Ann attended Kearney State Teachers College, after which she worked in Lincoln for an insurance company, as well as at the capitol. She was offered the “Champagne Lady” position for the Lawrence Welk Show, but turned it down to marry her husband, Jim.In June 1961, she married Reverend James Lewis Mintle and began her life in a ministry that lasted nearly 45 years. To this union were born seven children: Mary Darlene, Rose Ann, Joanna Louis, James L., Sylvia Elizabeth, Velma Carlene and George Alfred Mintle. Jim and Mary Ann enjoyed ministering at many churches including Cedar Creek, O’Neill, Mullen, Taline Union, Elsmere, Brewster and Thedford. In the spring of 1970, they settled at their ranch near Thedford. One of the highlights of her life was singing together as a family, and took great pride in teaching her children to sing and blend together as a group. Mary Ann held various jobs to help support their large family including selling Avon, working in the school cafeteria and running the Cactus Cafe restaurant. She was jovial, loved making people happy and had a ready smile for everyone. She loved her position as rural mail carrier west and south of Thedford, and north and south of Seneca, Nebraska. She enjoyed the families on her route and looked forward to delivering “special packages” to their children, especially during holidays. Mary Ann was preceded in death by parents Claude and Mary Florea, brothers Donald Eugene and George Alfred Florea, two sisters Naomi Della Florea and Cornelia Jean (Florea) Shears, husband Reverend James Lewis Mintle, mother-in-law and father-in-law George and Velma Mintle, brother-in-law Gary Mintle, nieces, nephews and friends. Mary Ann is survived by sisters, Sylvia Rose (Florea) Miles of O’Neill, Hazel Colleen (Florea) Smith of Geneva and Laura Belle (Florea) Ramirez of Loveland, Colo.; her children, Mary of Kearney, Rose (Jerry) Mull of Brady, Joanna (Matthew) Montgomery of Clarkston, Michigan, James (Shari) Mintle of North Platte, Sylvia Mintle of Thedford, Velma (Allen) Ewoldt of Thedford and George (Trina) Mintle of Thedford; 18 grandchildren, Cody Allen Hackney, Jerry Logan Mull, Kyle Lewis Mull, Courtney Marie (Drew) Feeney, Angela Kay (Larry) Blackstone, Jason Lee (Kelly) Mull, Giavanna Isabella Montgomery, Allissandria Sophia Montgomery, Jerilyn Christine Montgomery, Jesse Wayne Montgomery, Natilee Rose Mintle, Mavrick James Mintle, Danya Marie Mintle, Caitlin Elizabeth Mintle, Connor Michael Burns, Frank Chandler Burns, Derek James Mintle, Brenton Duane Mintle; six great-grandchildren, April Mull, Rileigh Mull, Dillon Mull, Larry Dwayne Jr. Blackstone, Beau Alexander Blackstone, Adeline Amber Feeney, her dear friend Robert Burns, as well as many nieces, nephews, family and friends.Services will be held on Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017, at 11 a.m. CT at Bethel Assembly of God Church in Thedford. Interment will be in the Hillcrest Cemetery. Memorials may be sent to Mary Ann Mintle Memorial Fund, c/o 38912 Hwy 2, Thedford, NE 69166. Arnold & Mullen Funeral Home in charge of arrangements.