December 28, 1931 ~ January 20, 2024 (age 92)

With broken hearts we announce the passing of our beloved Erna Elaine Tanner Kenner January 20th, 2024. She was known affectionately as “Tanner” to her husband of 72 years, “Mom” to her three children, “Grandma” to 11 Grandchildren and “Grandma Great” or Great Grandma to 41 Erna passed from this life with a peaceful, beautiful smile on her face as she looked heavenward to her loved ones receiving her on the other side of the veil. This is a wonderful source of peace for those of us left behind who will miss her so very much.

She is survived by her devoted husband Robert Dwayne Kenner, Daughter LeAnn Kenner, Sons Hal Tanner Kenner (Kathie) and Robert Lowell Kenner (Ronda.) Brother Verl Tanner (Maxine.) and all her grandchildren and great grandchildren.

She is preceded in death by her parents Ross O. Tanner, Ramona Ward, and Sisters Arda Openshaw, Joyce Lee, and Carla Dee Boyles.

Erna was born in Burley Idaho and moved to Modesto area of California when she was around three years old. She learned the value of hard work on family Dairy Farms at a very young age. She attended High School at Modesto High School. After graduating she briefly attended Utah State University in Logan Utah, but had to return home. Around this time, she also worked as a Telephone Operator and amazed many people on the phone who were so impressed by her beautiful voice and perfect grammar. People from different parts of the country would call their family members to the phone to have them listen to the pretty voice. About this time, she set her sights on one Bob Kenner, someone she had known in her church congregation for many years who had just returned from service in the US Navy. At a church dance she stepped into his path. He didn’t recognize her at first as she had grown up quite a bit since he had seen her last and he asked her to save the last dance for him. She did and he took her to her home that night, out to a movie the next night and the rest is history. They were married March 5th, 1952, in the Mesa Arizona Temple and their love affair has lasted 72 years and will last into the eternities.

Erna was a strong and ambitious woman, helping her husband out managing the financial books at the family tire shop business and at Merced Flying School. She became an airplane pilot herself and became the first woman pilot in her chapter of the Civil Air Patrol. All of this while starting a family and in fact flew an airplane to her Doctor’s appointments all through her pregnancy with her last child. Erna knew hard times and bravely supported her husband through an illness that almost took his life and caused them to lose the family businesses. She nursed and supported her husband back to good health and followed him across country in his chosen work to places like Atlanta Georgia, North Carolina, Reno Nevada and back to Ceres California, Anaheim California and then Salt Lake City area of Utah. She was a active member of the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers. She and Bob ran a Trailer Park Rental Property and later moved to Farmington Utah and then Brigham City Utah in Retirement.

Erna sacrificed much for her children and made sure they had every opportunity to excel and grow and in some ways lived out her dreams vicariously through her children. She had loved her time at college so much and because she wasn’t able to finish her education, she made sure her children all obtained higher educations. Her crowning joys were her grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Erna was a faithful and devoted member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and held many callings in Primary, Relief Society and Sunday School Teaching Assignments. She was an active and devoted member of the church until the last few years when her health stopped her from attending regularly, but her faith never wavered.

We offer our heartfelt gratitude for the wonderful folks at Maple Springs Skilled Nursing, Brigham Senior Center and Meals on Wheels, Bristol Hospice, Assisting Hands, Ali’s Angels in Home Care and Dr. John Markeson and his staff and the members of the Brigham City 16th Ward for their selfless and kind service to Erna and her family during these last many months.

A viewing will be held at Myers Mortuary 205 S.100 E. in Brigham City, Utah on Saturday, January 27, 2024, at 8:30 AM MST followed by a funeral service at 10:00 AM MST at the same venue.

We invite you to share your memories, stories, and photos of Erna on her Remember page.

We would love for you to help us celebrate her journey in a way that matches her wonderful life.

Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at Myers Mortuary.

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