Sioux Falls, S.D. Services were held on March 25, 2013, at Beaver Valley Lutheran Church in Valley Springs, S.D.
Iona Louise Olson was born July 17, 1919, in rural Valley?Springs, S.D., to Hulda (Paulson) and Elmer Olson. She died March 21, 2013, at Bethany Lutheran Home in Sioux Falls, S.D. She was 93 years old. Iona was baptized and confirmed at Beaver Valley Lutheran Church in rural Valley Springs. She attended Sunnyside Country School grades 1-8. She stayed during the school week with her aunt Clara and uncle Edwin Olson in Valley Springs so that she could attend high school in Valley Springs. She graduated Valley Springs High School in 1937 as salutatorian of her class. Iona enjoyed working on the farm with her brother Norman. She appreciated that her brother Adolphus taught her how to drive a manual transmission car. She enjoyed her work at JC Penney's in downtown Sioux Falls where she unpacked and ironed clothing before it was placed out on the floor. She also was an elevator operator there.
Doris Olson encouraged her brother Dean to date Iona. Iona and Dean were married Feb. 14, 1948, at Beaver Valley Lutheran Church. They took the train to Loveland, Colo., for their honeymoon. Their marriage was blessed with five children. Aware that they did not have great material wealth, Iona said, "My children are my jewels."
Iona found joy in raising her children, cooking, baking, gardening and preserving food, washing clothes even with a wringer washer, before she had a dryer, and keeping a clean house. During her life, she baked thousands and thousands of cookies. She began her baking skills early by baking cookies to please her three older brothers and continued by having cookies and milk ready for her kids after school as well as furnishing cookies for church events and remembering her neighbors. She was a domestic engineer of excellence.
Iona and Dean felt especially blessed by their grandchildren and treasured them. Iona was active in her church through circle and WELCA, furnishing and serving food and putting together quilts. She enjoyed the fellowship and friendship of her "church basement lady" friends.
Grateful for having shared her life are her children, Mary Hanson, of Sioux Falls, Marlene Hanson, of Blue Earth, Daniel (Virginia) Hanson, of Garretson, Dale (Krista) Hanson, of Valley Springs, and Martha (Richard) Archer, of Sioux Falls; her grandchildren, Jenny Kline; Thomas, Katherine, Natalie, Mattie, Derek, and Isaac Hanson; Andrew (Khalila), Tyler, Meghan, and Elizabeth Archer; her sister and brother-in-law, LaVonne and Delmar Johnson, of Beresford; her dear friend, Margaret Scholten, of Valley Springs; many nieces and nephews and grand and great-grandnieces and nephews; and a host of other relatives and friends.
Iona was preceded in death by her husband, Dean; parents, Hulda and Elmer Olson; brother, Adolphus Olson; brothers and sisters-in-law, Norman and Doris Olson, and David and Alta Olson; sister-in-law, Eleanor Hanson; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Mattie and Frank Taylor; niece, Natalie Plueger; and nephew, Edward Taylor.
Blessed be her memory.