Crystal Lillian (Crook) Appel

Crystal Lillian (Crook) Appel, 94, of Redfield, SD, passed away Saturday, February 18, 2023, at Community Memorial Hospital Avera in Redfield. 

   Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., with family present, on Friday, February 24, at Hyke Funeral Home in Redfield.  A prayer service and time of sharing will begin at 6:00 p.m.

    Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, February 25, at St. Bernard Catholic Church in Redfield. Reverend John Short will officiate.  Interment will follow at St. Bernard’s Catholic Cemetery in Redfield.  Lunch will be served in the church hall after the committal service.

  Both the prayer service and Mass of Christian Burial will be live-streamed on the funeral home’s website below Crystal’s obituary.  Arrangements have been entrusted to Hyke Funeral Home ( 

   On April 6, 1928, Crystal was born to Albert Earl and Viola Elizabeth (Schafer) Crook.  She grew up on a farm west of Doland, SD, with her parents, four brothers, and three sisters.  It was a vegetable farm where all the family helped operate.  She went to the Noonan Country Grade School and then attended Redfield High School.

   Crystal met Edward Appel and they were married in 1950 and had six children:  Jean Ann in 1951, Randal Lee (stillborn) in 1954, Daniel Edward in 1955, Joylene Jill in 1957, David Earl in 1957, and Juliann Kay in 1958.  Crystal was a family-oriented person.  She always supported her children’s many activities, organized family reunions, created family history books, and celebrated family birthdays.

   Crystal loved to travel.  Her family went on many camping trips that she orchestrated, and then later in life, she and Edward traveled by motor home around the continental United States, as well as going to Alaska, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, Israel, and Egypt.

   Crystal also loved sewing and quilting.  She made many of her children’s clothes and hundreds of beautiful quilts, which were donated to raffles, particularly the American Cancer Society, or given to her children and grandchildren for graduations, birthdays, and marriages.

   Crystal volunteered for 23 years as the director of education for St. Bernard Catholic Church.  This involved countless hours as she developed all the educational programs for all grades during her tenure.  This included three sessions a week:  high school, grade school, and at the State School and Home.  She created and produced the Christmas programs.  When she was stricken with cancer for the second time at 81 years old, she relinquished her church volunteer work.  She was involved in Altar Society, Study club, and did several years with both the Boy and Girt Scouts as a leader.

   Crystal did over 20 years of volunteer work for the American Cancer Society by organizing the Relay for Life event and the Daffodil Drive.

While doing all this volunteer work, Crystal worked with her husband, Edward, at their business.  They bought a service station in 1950 and called it “Appel’s Standard Service.”  Crystal did the bookwork as well as some service on cars.  In 1960, they expanded their business and bought a Texaco Bulk service, changing the name to “Appel Oil Company.”  In 1984, they added a truck stop and sold the business to their son and his wife, Daniel and Vickie Appel.

   Her strong devotion to faith and God was evident in Crystal’s life each day.  She prayed the rosary three times daily.  She prayed one for her children, one for her grandchildren, and finally, one for anyone else who needed it most.  Crystal was always very positive and helpful, giving selflessly of her time.  She was very loved and will be sorely missed by her family.

   She is survived by her children:  Jean Ann Tastad, Daniel (Vickie) Appel, twins Joylene Cleveland and David (Mary Ann) Appel, and Juliann (Timothy) Pendolino.  Crystal is also survived by her grandchildren:  Jeremy (Joni) Price, Simon (Heidi) Appel, Shawna (Karl) Paepke, Joshua (Viviana) Appel, Jerad (Audrey) Appel, Jacob (Jenna) Appel, Kelsey (Damion) Martinmaas, Vanessa (Casey McCarville) Appel, Tynon (Laura) Cleveland, Elizabeth (Matt) Connelly, Crystal (Will) Miller, and Tony Pendolino; 24 great-grandchildren; brother Berwyn Crook; and sister Virginia Kirkland. 

   Crystal was preceded in death by her husband Edward, infant son Randal Lee, three brothers, and two sisters.