June 3, 1920- August 20, 2012
Funeral Services for Jean Clause, 92, of Jefferson, will be 10:30 am Thursday, August 23, 2012 at the First Presbyterian Church in Jefferson. Cremation will follow the service and burial will take place at a later date. Visitation begins after 11:00 am Wednesday, August 22, at Slininger-Rossow Funeral Home in Jefferson with the family present to greet friends from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm Wednesday. Memorials are suggested to First Presbyterian Church in Jefferson.
Jean Clause, 92, passed away quietly on August 20, 2012, at Regency Park Rehabilitation Center in Jefferson following a brief illness. Her family was with her at the time of death.
Jean was born June 3, 1920 in Sac City, Iowa, the third of four daughters of Homer Moore Eble and Florence Persinger Eble. She was a child of the Great Depression, experiencing the life homemade clothes, meager meals, losing the family farm, living in the car, and moving from town to town. She attended high schools in Sac City, Sioux City, and Jefferson before graduating from Sac City High School. She excelled in cheerleading, tennis, music and was offered a clarinet chair with the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra.
She worked as a dental assistant in Jefferson where she met her husband Gerald Clause, a young banker with the Home State Bank. It was December 7, 1941 a “day which will live in infamy.”
They married June 28, 1942, entering into a partnership that lasted 63 years, raising and fostering the lives of children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.
Following WWII they lived in Jefferson until retirement in 1981. While Gerald dedicated his business career to managing the financial lives of many of the town’s residents, in addition to raising her three children, Jean was active in a number of community and state initiatives ranging from service to junior golf to participation on the Iowa Arts Council and the promotion of AFS (American Field Service, allowing children from all over the world to live for a year with a family abroad). She was always looking for a new project or event to manage. Jean was a writer and a poet, producing stories from her life, poems for all occasions, all which helped to define her as a person and to provide a history for all who new her.
As a passionate golfer, bridge player and cook, she was known also for her friendly competitiveness, her ability to play and the sharing of her knowledge. She helped to grow junior golf in her years in Iowa – even by securing the State Junior Girl’s Championship to Jefferson. She had the distinction of beating the odds in golf by making two Holes-in One in a span of five days! Jean was always on the leading edge of life, embracing innovation and change. Following her love for cooking, she embraced a new product, the OSTER blender when it was in it infancy and traveled to area stores doing presentations and demonstrations as “Joan Oster”. Always in fashion, she also produced trendy clothing for herself and her children. Jean’s appreciation for the arts was exemplified by her desire to bring more to the town. Jean loved to read, often getting four or five books a week from the local library; her reading lead to a vast knowledge of the world. Travel for business and pleasure made it possible for Jean and Gerald to see the world – visiting son Tom while he served in the navy, Maria Christina Pendino, their AFS daughter in Argentina and son, Jeff in South Africa. After Gerald’s passing she traveled twice more to South Africa, most recently in her 91st year.
Following Gerald’s retirement from the Home State Bank, after 44 years of service, they began a new chapter in their adult lives by moving to Lago Vista, Texas near Austin. For more than 25 years in Texas, they were instrumental in establishing a new community church and participating in a number of community activities. Jean wrote articles for the local paper, often interviewing new residents in the area. She loved her home, designed by son, Tom, and her friends in Texas. Gerald’s health failed in 2005. After a couple of years on her own, the decision was taken to return to Jefferson to live in another residence designed by her son, and to be closer to her children. Jean soon joined the Presbyterian church and began looking for new challenges. Jean loved her computer and stayed close to her family through e-mails and even SKYPE. Forever young at heart, Jean passed on Monday, August 20th, 2012.
Jean was preceded in death by her parents; sisters Charlene Ellwanger, Helen Coler, and Margy Klassi; an infant son Christopher; and husband Gerald. She is survived by her children, son Tom (Molly) Clause, Winterset, IA; daughter Andrea (Peter) Rhoades, New Holstien, WI; son Jeff (Liezl) Clause, St. Francis Bay, South Africa; 8 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren.
Information provided by:
Slininger-Rossow Funeral Home
119 West Lincolnway
PO Box 108
Jefferson, Iowa 50129