Gloria Ruth Lowe Turner passed away on February 20, 2020, at the age of 84. She was born on March 23, 1935, in Atlantic to Cecil Earl and Helen Beatrice (Jahnke) Lowe. She lived most of her childhood in Adair, with a few years living in Estherville during World War II. She graduated from Adair High School in 1952.
Gloria married Gail Turner on February 8, 1952. They were blessed with four children, 17 grandchildren, 19 great- grandchildren, 1 great-great-grandchild and countless lifelong friends. Loving relationships with family and friends were important and nurtured. The couple spent the first two years of their married life on the Turner family farm south of Anita, moving to Atlantic in December 1954 and then purchasing their farm north of Anita in 1966. In their young married life, Gail and Gloria enjoyed square-dancing, roller skating and Pinochle.
Gloria was so much more than a farm wife. She was a loving daughter and sister, a devoted mother, a kind friend, a “professional” volunteer and a Godly woman of deep and abiding faith. She grew in her faith through personal prayer, attending Disciple Bible studies and was a pilgrim on The Walk to Emmaus.
She was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church and sang in the choir for 40 years. She taught many different Sunday School, Bible School, Bible studies classes, led The Seekers adult Sunday School, and was a member of the Covenant Prayer group for decades. She served with the local, district and conference levels of United Methodist Women, filling leadership roles in Mission Education and as a state officer. She served on the conference planning committee with the Bishop and was a delegate to the Annual Conference for many years.
Gloria was passionate about mission in service to others. She delivered meals, drove others to medical appointments, co-chaired the annual Turkey Supper for over 20 years, served on the local mission committee and participated in the In Gathering at the conference level. She traveled to Guatemala in 2001 on a Volunteers in Mission trip and served in the medical clinic and also hand formed rebar for concrete construction, amazing the Guatemalans with her skills at 65 years of age.
Gloria was also a lifelong “teacher” and mentor. She led the Gay Grant Gals 4-H Club for 12 years and taught many young girls how to sew in all day classes. She hosted the club’s annual meeting with 30-45 girls doing crafts like tie dyeing and candle making in her kitchen! She served on county committees and also as a 4-H judge. She was an IHSSA certified Speech judge for over 25 years, traveling the state almost every weekend to judge small and large group contests. She supported Exira and Cumberland-Anita-Massena music boosters, sewing and altering costumes for countless musicals and theatre productions.
In her “spare” time, Gloria had many interests. On the farm, she had a large garden and canned quarts and quarts of the produce. She raised and dressed chickens and sold eggs. She was a voracious reader and a member of multiple book clubs over the years. She loved to play Scrabble and could beat almost anyone. Gloria solved puzzles of all kinds – jigsaw, word seeks, crossword. She loved cooking, baking and entertaining and was famous for her Christmas cookie platters.
Gloria was a creative soul. She sewed prom and bridesmaid dresses for her children and extended family, and even a few wedding gowns, plus constructed sports coats for son Max’s wedding. Hundreds of Raggedy Ann dolls, Care Bears and stuffed ducks and geese were gifted to others. She knitted, crocheted, counted cross stitch, embroidered, and produced ceramics, mosaic table tops, etc. Gloria was an accomplished quilter and was a member of Patchwork Friends and Loyal Circle quilting for over 30 years.
After the children left the nest, Gail and Gloria traveled most of the USA with their camper and especially enjoyed National Parks and Monuments. After Gail died in 1995, Gloria purchased a home in Anita and became fiercely independent. She continued her travels; a highlight of her life was her journey to The Holy Lands. She also took many trips with her friend Myrna Rabe, two widowed friends with a penchant for quilt stores and gift shops. They even took a cruise to Alaska.
Gloria was very active with the Cass County Hospital Auxiliary. She served for 25 years and put in over 2600 hours of service, retiring just last fall. She loved her PEO sisters of Chapter EZ, and served in many offices including president.
Gloria was preceded in death by her husband of 43 years, her parents, her sisters Roberta Ross and Sandra Speedling, grandson Benjamin Wedemeyer, and great-grandson Neomyia Fortner.
She is survived by her sister Carla (Don) Eggen of Adair; her children Max (Connie) Turner of Williamsburg; Mark (Michelle) Turner of Huxley; Vicki (Craig) Shriver of Atlantic; and Lori (Michael) Halligan of Lexington, KY. Grandchildren Erin (Ron) Turner-Williams of West Des Moines; Megan (Jeff) Schulte of Williamsburg; Andrew (Audra) Turner of Montezuma; Cullen Turner of Williamsburg; Kellie (Justin) Enderson of Huxley, Jeffrey (Kim) Turner of Weatherford, TX; Patrick (Amber) Turner of Oskaloosa; Allison Turner of Elk Horn; Grant Turner of Slater; Nick (Melissa) Stump of Huxley; Paul Wedemeyer of Madrid; Lucas Wedemeyer of Iowa City; Tracy (Erin) Almelien of Washington; Victoria Shriver of Anita; Brady (Johanna) Halligan of Brookline, NH; and Riley Halligan of Raleigh, NC. She is also survived by 19 Great-Grandchildren and 1 Great-Great-Grandchild.
There will be a visitation from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. with family present from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, February 25, 2020, at Hockenberry Funeral Home in Anita, Iowa.
The funeral service will be at 2:00 p.m., Wednesday, February 26, 2020, at the United Methodist Church in Anita, Iowa. Burial will be in Evergreen Cemetery, Anita, Iowa.
In lieu of flowers, please make memorials to the family, (or the Methodist Church or to the PEO). The family will divide memorials to some of Gloria's favorite charities.
Hockenberry Family Care is in charge of the arrangements.