Marjorie Eleanor Karns, 85, a longtime Anita resident, passed away February 13, 2019, at Bickford Cottage of Marshalltown, Iowa.
Marjorie Eleanor Roots was born January 18, 1934, on a farm north of Massena, Iowa. Marjorie (Marge) was one of twin daughters born to J. Burl and Carrie (Hundorf) Roots. There were two other children in the family, Ronald and Marilyn. The Roots family farmed until March 1940, when they moved to Anita. Burl and Carrie owned and operated the Redwood Steak House until Burls death. Marge graduated from Anita High School in 1951 and attended Iowa State College.
Marjorie and Donald Cloyd Karns were married in Anita on February 1, 1953. They farmed in the Berea vicinity, Adair County. In November 1957, they moved to Anita where Don worked at Anita State Bank. Don later joined the Town and Country Insurance Agency as a partner. The firm later became known as Brocker, Karns & Karns.
Marge was active in local community projects and organizations. She was a member of the Anita United Methodist Church and served on the Administrative Board several years. She was a member of PEO, Republican Women, and served as Cass County Deputy Assessor in Anita for 15 years. On May 1, 1977, she was appointed Supervisor to the Cass County Board of Supervisors.
Marge became the first woman in Cass County history to be elected to the Board of Supervisors when she was elected in the 1978 general election, Supervisor District I. She was reelected to the position in subsequent elections and served almost 16 years until her retirement December 31, 1992. During this time, she served as Cass County Board Chairperson and Iowa State Association Counties (ISAC) 4th District President. She was also a member of the Southwest Iowa (SWIA) Mental Health Board and two governor-appointed commissions, the Home Rule Study Commission and the Planning Council for Developmental Disabilities.
Marge enjoyed golfing, boating with Don and friends on Lake Anita, and her artistic endeavors. Her children, grandchildren, and many community groups benefited from her artistic talents on many projects. One of which can be seen on the Whale of a Town signs when entering Anita.
Marge has spent her recent years at Bickford Cottage in Marshalltown, Iowa, where she could be closer to her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
Marge was preceded in death by her husband, Donald Karns; by her parents, J. Burl and Carrie Roots; and by her brother Ronald Roots and sister-in law Karma Roots.
Marge is survived by daughter, Rebecca (Steven) Hagen of Marshalltown; sons, Douglas (Deborah) Karns of Cedar Falls, and Roger (Chantel) Karns of West Des Moines; 7 grandchildren, Benjamin Hagen, Michael (Kimberly) Hagen, Alicia (Tony) Jacobson, Daniel Karns, Emma Karns, James Karns, Patrick Karns; 3 great-grandchildren, Lucas Hagen, Katelynn Hagen, Brennan Jacobson; sister, Marilyn Robinson; nephews, Tom (Danette) Robinson, Larry (Judy) Roots; and niece, Jackie (Doug) Kluver.
Visitation with the family will be held 10:00 to 11:00 AM February 18, 2019, at the United Methodist Church in Anita, Iowa. The Memorial service will be held at 11:00 AM, following visitation at the church. Burial will be in Evergreen Cemetery in Anita at a later date.
The family wishes memorials go to the Anita Library/Community Center of Anita or the United Methodist Church.
Hockenberry Family Care in Anita, Iowa, is in charge of the arrangements.