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Karen Rae Wadle, 71, of Oskaloosa, passed away at 7:11 p.m. Thursday, March 3, 2016, at Iowa Methodist Hospital in Des Moines. She was born May 16, 1944, in Oskaloosa, to Ralph and Magdalene (DeWolf) Kempenaar. She married Joseph Wadle in Oskaloosa on Sept. 2, 1966. They made their home in Knoxville, and moved to Oskaloosa in 2012 to be closer to family. Joseph preceded Karen in death on July 18, 2013. Karen is survived by two daughters, Jodi (Tom) Pospeschil, of Macomb, Ill., and Julie (Craig) Ver Steegh, of rural Oskaloosa; four grandchildren, Ashley (Greg) Baker, of Des Moines and Joseph, Jamie and Grace Ver Steegh, of Oskaloosa; one sister, Sheryl Kindred, of Northhome, Minn.; sister-in-law Jane Kempenaar, of Newton; brother-in-law, Jess (Nancy) Wadle, of Gravois Mills, Mo., and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband; her parents; her brother, Ken Kempenaar, and her brother-in-law, Ed Kindred. Karen had many professional titles in the nursing field; however, the titles she cherished most were wife, mom and grandma. Karen attended the University of Iowa, where she received a bachelor’s degree in nursing in 1965. She returned to study at the University of Iowa, being awarded a master’s degree in nursing in 1983. She spent her entire professional career working for the Veterans Administration (VA) hospital, retiring as the chief of psychiatric nursing at the Knoxville VA. She also authored several academic textbook chapters and scholarly articles in nursing journals through her work with the University of Iowa School of Nursing and the VA hospitals in Knoxville, Des Moines and Iowa City. Karen enjoyed collecting antiques with her husband, making treasured quilts for her family, knitting and crocheting, playing piano and organ for church and praise team, scrapbooking photographs of her grandchildren, and attending their activities. She was also an accomplished organist and seamstress. Her joy came from her strong family and her strong faith. She was a founding member of Celebrate Community Church in Knoxville. Visitation, with the family present, was held on Sunday, March 6, from 2-4 p.m. at the Bybee & Davis Funeral Home. Funeral services were held at 10 a.m. Monday, March 7, 2016, at Celebrate Community Church in Knoxville. Burial followed in Graceland Cemetery, also in Knoxville. Memorials may be made to the Crosswalk Ministry of Celebrate Community Church in Knoxville, 1005 N. Lincoln St. Bybee and Davis Funeral Home is handling arrangements and online condolences may be left at bertrandfuneralhomes.com.
Published on  March 10, 2016
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