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Melissa A. Archer

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Melissa A. Archer, 49, of Gettysburg and formerly of Spokane, WA, passed away, Tuesday, June 19, 2012 at the Rapid City Regional Hospital after a long battle with Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Mass of Christian Burial will be 3:00p.m., Saturday June 23, 2012 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Gettysburg with Fr. Jerry Kopel officiating. A prayer service will be at 7:00p.m., Friday, June 22, 2012 at the church.

Melissa Ann Smith was born January 18, 1963 to William and Judith (Henson) Smith. She grew up in Spokane with her three brothers, Rod, Bradley and Scott. She always had many childhood stories to share about her and her brothers. She had also been very close to her Aunt Linda who was a big part of her life, even up until the time of her passing.

Melissa graduated from high school in Spokane in 1981. Following high school she went to work with JcPenny Photography and traveled many places taking precious photos. Her travels led her to Wyoming where she met her future husband Kelly Archer. Melissa and Kelly were married February 23, 1985 and to this union four daughters were born: Kristin Kay, Kami Ann, Kaci Lee & Keri Lynn. Kelly and Melissa were later divorced but made their homes in Gettysburg where they raised their daughters.

In 2008 another blessing was given to her when she met her oldest daughter, Rachel Lin after 28 years. Rachel had continually been a part of her life ever since. Meeting Rachel who has two daughters and Kami who has twins brought the grandkid count to four; Bella, Aja, Jaelyn & Joseph. Melissa’s grandchildren were the light of her life. A day never passed when she didn’t either see or talk to at least one of them.

Up until the unfortunate events that led to her disability, Melissa enjoyed golfing, bowling, spending time at the river and many other activities. She held many jobs while in Gettysburg. She sold insurance, managed the Super 8 Motel, was a clerk at Gas & Goodies, and most recently a clerk at J & B’s Convenience Store. Melissa always had a smile on her face and never complained about the continual pain she was in. She was always bragging about her grandkids and how proud she was of her daughters.

Grateful to have shared in Melissa’s life are her daughters: Kristin (Kyle) Hawkinson, Kami (Derick Stanley), Kaci, and Keri (Jason Hanson) all of Gettysburg and Rachel (Michael) Umland of Frederick, MD; her grandchildren: Jaelyn & Joseph Biel of Gettysburg and Bella & Aja Umland of Frederick, MD; her siblings: Brad (Leslie) Smith of Spokane, WA and Scott (JoAnna) Smith of Seattle, WA; and her Aunt Linda “Winnie” Willett of Spokane, WA and Uncles Rick (Peggy) Henson of Spokane, WA and Cal (Bobbie) Smith of Roy, WA. Melissa’s extended family includes her mother and father in law: Don & Kay Archer of Gettysburg; brothers and sisters in law: Kraig (Lori) Archer of Sisseton, Kim (Brad) Ware of Sturgis, Kip Archer of Sandusky, OH and Stacia Smith of Seattle, WA and former spouse: Kelly (Nichole) Archer of Gettysburg and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her maternal and paternal grandparents; her mother, Judith Arndt; father, Bill Smith; stepfather, Chet Arndt; stepmother, Barbara Smith; brother, Rod Smith; nephew, Stanley Smith and uncle, Steve Willett.

Luce Funeral Home of Gettysburg has been entrusted with Melissa’s arrangements. (www.familyfuneralhome.net)

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