Cover photo for Debra K Callaway's Obituary
Debra K Callaway Profile Photo
1954 Debra 2020

Debra K Callaway

January 14, 1954 — September 2, 2020

Debra K Callaway, the daughter of Lindberg Grant and Mildred M. (Graves) Keller, was born on January 14, 1954, on the Chanute Air Force Base in Champaign, Illinois and died on September 2, 2020, at the Audubon County Memorial Hospital in Audubon, Iowa at the age of 66 years, 7 months, and 19 days.

Debra attended school in Council Bluffs, Iowa where she was very gifted and frequently made honor role, and she graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School with the Class of 1972. Following graduation, Debra was employed by the city of Council Bluffs doing many different jobs, depending on the season. Not too long after, she went to work for the phone company, where she worked for approximately 20 years, taking early retirement to care for her mother.

On February 14, 1991, Debra agreed to go on a blind date with Steven Callaway, and by Friday, April 13, 1991, they were united in marriage at the Little White Chapel in Las Vegas, Nevada, not being bothered by the Friday the 13th superstition. They each brought two older children into the marriage, and they instantly became a family of six.

During her time at the phone company, Debra took several professional classes at Metro Tech Community College in Omaha, Nebraska. After a break for a number of years, Steve and Debra moved to Exira, Iowa in September 1998 and later purchased the Holiday Motel, which they operated for more than 10 years, selling in 2012.

Together they loved spending time traveling, especially to South Dakota to go camping and see the sites such as the Badlands National Park, the Reptile Gardens, and Mount Rushmore. Debra loved animals and over time built up quite the menagerie on their acreage, which they lived on full time shortly before selling the motel.

A passion of Debra’s was “goin’ junkin’,” a favorite term of hers for going to yard sales and thrift stores. She always found something she thought someone would enjoy, and was very generous of heart and meant well with every gift, regardless if it was actually needed. She loved spoiling her grandchildren and loved her animals.

Debra was a very open-minded thinker and was very willing to listen to others’ viewpoints and will always be remembered for making friends easily.

Preceding her in death were her parents, her grandparents, her aunts and uncles, and a brother-in-law.

Survivors include her husband, Steven Callaway of Exira, Iowa; her children: Chanda and husband Norman Knight of Atlantic, Iowa; Micah and wife Goldie Davis of Council Bluffs, Iowa; Steven Jr. and wife Sarah Callaway of Omaha, Nebraska; and Billie Callaway of Council Bluffs; 14 grandchildren; 13 great grandchildren; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law: Robert and wife Lora Callaway of Council Bluffs; Brian Callaway of Austin, Texas; and Angela Kidder of Bellevue, Nebraska; as well as other relatives and many friends.

An open visitation will be held Tuesday, September 8, 2020, from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Kessler Funeral Home in Exira, Iowa, with the family present from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. A Private Family Graveside Service will be held in the Exira Cemetery with Pastor Chris Andersen officiating. Interment will be in the Exira Cemetery. Casket bearers will be Steven Callaway Jr., Norman Knight, Micah Davis, and Ryan Camden. The Kessler Funeral Home in Exira is in charge of her arrangements.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Debra K Callaway, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Kessler Funeral Homes, Inc. - Exira

234 West South Street, Exira, IA 50076

An open visitation will be held Tuesday, September 8, 2020, from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Kessler Funeral Home in Exira, Iowa, with the family present from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. A Private Family Graveside Service will be held in the Exira Cemetery at a later date with Pastor Chris Andersen officiating.

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Burial

Exira Cemetery

, Exira, IA 50076

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