Mary Louise (Huff) Eason was born March 4, 1930 at home in rural Greenfield, Iowa, to parents Rosa Ada Enid (Lundy) and William Isaac Huff. She died peacefully Feb. 11, 2013 at home in Ankeny, Iowa, with her husband of 60 years, John Verne Eason, steadfastly by her side until the end, age 82 years and 345 days.
Mary grew up on the family farm with her older sister, Violet (Vi), and brother, William (Bill), who preceded her in death, and her younger sister, Delores. She attended country school, one room, through
elementary and was at one point taught by her older sister. Mary graduated from Greenfield High School in 1948 where she was active in cheerleading. She earned her diploma in nursing from the University of Iowa in 1951. Later in life, she returned to school and earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Dubuque in 1980.
While a student at Iowa, Mary met John. John was earning his BA and MA degrees in history and geography on the GI bill, a Marine veteran of the battle for Okinawa in WWII and part of the occupying force in Japan. They married Dec. 27, 1952 in Greenfield. They worked in various places in Iowa, teaching and nursing, through the 1950’s, eventually returning to Iowa City again where Mary worked at the University of Iowa Hospital and John taught junior high. They welcomed their first child, daughter, Melanie Kay, in 1960 and their son, John Jay, in 1961.
Mary moved with her family to Clear Lake in 1970. There she continued nursing and also began teaching nursing at North Iowa Area Community College. She branched out into corporate wellness and fitness in the early 80’s, leading the modern trend in health and well being. Mary consulted for “High Level Health” a number of years and then became the corporate nurse and health coach for Sperry-Unisys corporation in Clear Lake, retiring from there when they closed their operation in the late 1980’s. Mary continued to serve in retirement as a part-time hospice nurse at the North Iowa facility in Mason City into the 1990’s.
Mary and John moved to Ankeny in March of 2007 to be closer to their daughter, Melanie, son, Jay, and daughter-in-law, Sara, and their twin boys, Wyatt and Zane. Mary was thrilled to be able to help take care of her grandchildren during their first year and continued to enjoy spending as much time with them as possible the past nine years. Family gave great joy to Mary and she remained close to her many aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings, nieces, nephews, and their children.
Mary hardly sat still her whole life. She enjoyed gardening and being outside as much as her work and family. That must have been the farm girl in her. She was active in church, school, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, the “Red Hat Society” and hospice later in life. Only her heart disease and Lewy Body Dementia finally slowed her down in the last few years.
She leaves behind to cherish her memories her husband, John Verne; daughter, Melanie Eason; son, Jay Eason, and his wife, Sara; grandchildren, Wyatt Eason and Zane Eason; sister, Delores (Huff) Havens; and many nieces and nephews and their children.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Rosa and William; sister, Vi; and brother, Bill.
Having chosen cremation, a memorial service will be scheduled later for family and friends. Mary asked John to plant some trees in her memory. If you wish to donate to the family, any memorial funds will be dedicated to planting trees at selected sites.
Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, Clear Lake, was in charge of arrangements.