Irene Hunter was the daughter of Ben and Lillie (Patrick) Clipperton and was born on December 3, 1922, in their home southwest of Churdan and passed from this life January 30, 2019, at the Shady Oaks Care Center in Lake City. She lived her life to the age of 96 years, 1 month and 27 days.
Wilma grew up in rural Churdan, moving to her home north of Churdan when she was in junior high school. After she graduated from Churdan High School in 1940, she attended Iowa State Teachers College in Cedar Falls. Wilma taught at three country schools in rural Churdan. She enjoyed teaching and as her life unfolded often served in teaching roles. She would say “once a teacher, always a teacher”.
On April 10, 1947, Wilma was united in marriage with Floyd Clare Hunter in the home in which they resided north of Churdan. To this union two children were born. She was a homemaker and worked in several office positions throughout her life. Two of her favorites were being the office deputy sheriff of Greene County and the secretary to the dean of the College of Home Economics at Iowa State University. She also enjoyed her work at the Greene County ASCS office and the Churdan Elevator.
Wilma was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Churdan at which she served as a Sunday school teacher and pianist, president of the local American Baptist Women and the Guild Girls’ advisor. In the community, she was a 4-H leader for the Highland Lassies and a member of the Friday Club and the Rebecca Lodge.
For 18 years, Wilma and Clare traveled to Arizona to serve as volunteers on Rainbow Acres, a ranch for adults with developmental disabilities. Wilma spent much of her time tutoring ranchers on math and reading skills, which she found very rewarding. In 2009, they received the “Outstanding Service Award” from Rainbow Acres.
Wilma enjoyed doing many crafts including painting, crocheting and embroidery. She took great pleasure in flowers. Traveling was also a pleasure as they visited all 50 states and 12 countries including the Holy Land. Wilma will be forever missed by all who knew her, especially by her family.
Wilma is survived by Clare, her loving husband of 71 years; two children, Dennis (Pauline) Hunter of Fort Dodge and Joanna (Billy Sammons) Hunter of Churdan; two grandchildren, Amy Kirkhart and Amanda (Dustin) Haggard; six great-grandchildren, Paige, Peyton, Kadyn, Brock, Kamdyn and Karsyn; two step-grandchildren and four step-great-grandchildren; former daughter-in-law Mary Cerwick; and many nieces and nephews. Those who preceded her in death were her parents and brother, Wayne Brody.
A celebration of Wilma’s life will be held Feb. 4 at 10: 30 am at the First Baptist Church in Churdan with Pastor Bobby Palmer, Rev. Gary Wagner and Rev. Lowell Hoyle officiating. Rochelle Guess Fagg and Renaye Lindgren will accompany the congregational singing. Special music will include soloist Danielle Curtis, and a piano solo, “Ode to Wilma”, by Billy Sammons.
Burial will be made in the Highland Township Cemetery in Churdan. Serving as casket bearers will be Charlie Paup, Tracy Hunter, David Brody, Peyton Mericle, Brock Mericle, and Dustin Haggard. Honorary casket bearers will be Keith and Rhetta Wright and all Wilma’s nieces and nephews including Ann Meyer, Byron Paup, Harold Hoyle and Marc Hoyle.
Friends and family are invited to a time of lunch and fellowship at the church following the graveside service.
The family is assisted by Brown Funeral Home of Jefferson.