Amy Flottmann, 95, Washington, formerly of Gerald, died Monday, Aug. 31, 2020, at Willow Brooke Assisted Living, Union.
She was born Feb. 22, 1925, in Manchester, England, the only child of Jack Preece and wife Bessie, nee Burgess.
Amy attended school in Manchester and was an award-winning swimmer on her school’s team. She was 14 when England entered World War II.
The influx of GIs sent abroad led to Amy meeting her future husband, Olin, who was drafted with his brother Leo in April 1941. The brothers were among the first soldiers to go overseas and made a pact to return to the States without commitments. That was not to be. Leo met and married Shelia Cuthbert in England in 1944, and Shelia came to stay in Gerald on Oscar and Ruth Flottmann’s farm while her husband finished his time in the service.
Amy and Olin dated in England and fell in love. The Armed Forces had a policy that soldiers have a “cooling off” period during the war for those wanting to wed British women. The couple wished to marry in America, and waited the required time.
Olin arranged for Amy to meet Irene Nicholls, from Manchester, who was coming to America to marry Richard Degen, of Washington, so the women could travel together. This led to a lifelong friendship between the war brides and their families. Irene died just months before Amy.
Amy and Olin were married Sept. 13, 1946 at Boeuff Presbyterian Church, Gerald. They celebrated 63 years of marriage before Olin died June 1, 2010.
Adjusting to life on the farm and later in their home in the small town of Gerald, after being from Manchester, was difficult for Amy who leaned on her sister-in-law Shelia for support. The two women became fast friends, living only a block from one another in Gerald, sharing books, tea, and trips to the creek with their families. Their husbands, along with Olin and Leo’s brother Roy Flottmann and brother-in-law John Meyer, founded Beaufort Transfer Trucking Company, which they operated in Gerald for many years.
Amy was a member of Boeuff Presbyterian Church. She also was a strong library advocate. In the 1950s she went to Jefferson City to lobby support from the State Library to give trial bookmobile service to Franklin County. Once people saw the benefits they voted to support a regional library with taxes, giving birth to the Scenic Regional Library system.
Amy loved her family dearly, was empathic and compassionate with others, yet wasn’t afraid to tell people what she thought. She was a fierce competitor at Scrabble and bridge and felt blessed by friends she made in her weekly bridge group and at Willow Brooke Assisted Living.
Amy always had a book in hand and passed that passion along to her family. She adored the sea, and found serenity in walking the beach in Great Britain and in Jensen Beach, Fla. where she and Olin wintered.
She loved travel and knitting, adored flowers and music and could recite long poems from her childhood. Amy also liked to invite people to her home for tea and was forever in search of the best scone recipe. She bid her family and friends goodbye with T.T.F.N., “Tata for now.”
Amy is survived by three children, Chris Stuckenschneider, and husband Jerome “Sparky, Washington, Bob Flottmann and wife Gloria, Gerald, and Jackie Schell and husband Ron, Washington; grandchildren, Jennifer Swift and husband Jeff, Maplewood; Rebecca Eschmann, Kirkwood; and Katie Stuckenschneider, St. Louis; Heather Flottmann and husband Ed Stehlin, Staten Island, N.Y.; Sean Flottmann and Heather Sugg, Washington; and Josh Flottmann and wife Stevie, Fordland; Dr. Jonathan Schell and wife Merrica, Ladue; Adam Schell, Chesterfield; and Tyler Schell and wife Anna, Washington; great-grandchildren Avery and Parker Swift, both of Maplewood; Miles, Reed and Phoebe Eschmann, all of Kirkwood; Lily Stehlin, Staten Island, N.Y.; Ava Flottmann, Washington; Tucker and Barret Flottmann, both of Fordland; and Remington and Wesley Schell, both of Ladue; cousins Geoff and Gill Leigh-Ford and daughters, England; other relatives and many friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Olin; her parents, Jack and Bessie Preece; brothers-in-law, Roy and Leo Flottmann and John Meyer; sisters-in-law, Alice and Shelia Flottmann and LaVera Meyer; and her English cousin Kenneth Brooks.
A private family memorial will be held at Boeuff Presbyterian Church Saturday, Sept. 26, at 1 p.m., officiated by Craig Branson, husband of Amy’s niece Deniece. An outdoor luncheon for family and friends will be held after the memorial at 3 p.m. at the St. Gerald Catholic Church pavilion in Gerald.
Memorials can be made to Boeuff Presbyterian Church, Gerald Area Library or Gerald Historical Society, Restoration of Gerald’s old schoolhouse.
Internment will be in Boeuff Presbyterian Cemetery following the memorial service. The family is being served by Nieburg-Vitt, Miller Funeral Home, Washington.