Verna Desbien Arpin, beloved mother, grandmother, great grandmother, and great-great grandmother embraced her Savior to a life of eternal salvation on June 24, 2019. She died at the Hays Regional Medical Center, Hays, Kansas. She was born October 31, 1923, in Damar, Kansas, the daughter of Oliver and Blanche (Benoit) Simoneau.
She was a lifetime resident of Damar. Verna married Philip Desbien on November 27, 1945 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Damar. He died March 15, 1995. She married Alfred Arpin on December 26, 2001. He died December 21, 2006. She was a retired beautician and owner of Verna’s Beauty Shop for 60 years.
Verna was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, St. Ann Altar Society, and a lifetime member of the Damar Historical Foundation all in Damar and the Bogue American Legion Women’s Auxiliary. She also enjoyed her membership in the Swinging Wheel Square Dance Club with her husband Philip. They never traveled without packing their dancing clothes and danced all over the United States, including Alaska.
Survivors include four sons: Ed Desbien (Mary) of Boise City, Oklahoma, Jim Desbien (Paula) of Plainville, Rich Desbien (Wanda) of Nampa, Idaho, and Larry Desbien (Chris) of Damar; three daughters: Gerry Larson (Don) of Hays, Chris Sillin of Hutchinson, and Sheila Surmeier (J.F.) of Saint Joseph, Missouri; one sister Loretta Kruse (Paul) of Peru, Nebraska; 26 grandchildren; 44 great grandchildren; and two great-great grandchildren; three step-children: Judy Bieker (Bill) of Hays, Dale Arpin (Candy) of Denver, Colorado, and Renee Marcotte (Tony) of Damar; caregiver Mary Alton, Walsh, Colorado; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by one brother, Gerald Simoneau, and a son-in-law Douglas Sillin. She loved unconditionally and was deeply loved by her family and friends.
A vigil and rosary was held June 25 at 7pm at the St. Joseph Catholic Church in Damar. Mass of Christian burial was June 26 at 11:00am with the Reverend Vincent Thu Hlaing officiating and burial in St. Joseph Cemetery in Damar. Memorials are requested to St. Joseph Catholic Church Memorial Fund or the Damar Community Historical Foundation. Arrangements were by Stinemetz Funeral Home, Hill City, Kansas.