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Winona Loomis

Dec 17, 2019

Funeral service for Winona Loomis of Ayrshire, is Wednesday, Dec. 18, at 1:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in Emmetsburg. Rev. Hojin Shin will officiate.

The family will be at the church one hour prior to the service to greet friends and relatives.

Visitation will be Tuesday, Dec. 17 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Martin-Mattice Funeral Home in Emmetsburg.

Interment will be in Silver Lake Cemetery near Ayrshire. The Martin-Mattice Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Winona Reed Loomis was born on November 2, 1926, on a farm in Clay County, to Clark and Myrtle (Williams) Reed. She grew up on the farm with her older brother Dick Reed who would tease and scare her with chickens, this was the start of a lifelong fear of birds. Sadly her brother passed away when Winona was only 16.

Winona attended school in Webb and graduated in 1944. After high school she started her career as a telephone operator.

On November 22, 1953 Winona married C. Richard Loomis in a private wedding ceremony in Jackson, MN.

They made their family home in Ayrshire and together they successfully ran the Loomis Trucking Line, then the Ayrshire Stockyards and finally settled in a career of farming.

To this union three children were born: Jane Purcell, Randy Loomis and Joanne Thies.

Winona was a hardworking wife and mother. She helped with the family farms her entire life, first with her parents, then her husband and then with her son Randy.

In 2005 she was honored with her first Iowa Century Farm award, a few years later she was honored with a second Century Farm.

In 1967 Winona started working part time for the U.S. Post Office as a Postal Clerk and in 1982 became the Postmaster in Curlew. That same year Winona became a widow.

During her career in Curlew she met a sweet gentleman named Jim Marcellus, who became her dear friend for the next 29 years. Winona would later transferred to be the Post Master in her home town of Ayrshire.

During her 25 years of service with USPS she was active in the Iowa League of Postmasters at both the state and national level. She was an Iowa state delegate for the National League of Postmasters and she and Jim enjoyed traveling to the National Conventions including trips to Hawaii and Puerto Rico.

Winona retired in 1992 to start her new career as Grandma! She was blessed with 5 grandchildren.

Winona also enjoyed supporting her church and community. She was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church, serving on the board directors, ladies circles, participating and promoting Dinner Date, delivering meals on wheels and teaching Sunday school. Winona also served on the Palo Alto County Economic Development Group and the Ayrshire Economic Development Board, including a term as President. She applied for community business development grants and worked to help to bring the 3 apartment buildings to Ayrshire. In 1997 she served on the Palo Alto County Sesquicentennial Committee.

Winona was outgoing and enjoyed being a member of the Pythian Sisters and celebrated a 70 year membership. She and Jim enjoyed square dancing and were members of the Pepper Steppers Square Dancing group of Iowa. They enjoyed square dancing and the social camaraderie of this organization so much, that during their winter travels to south Texas they joined more square dancing clubs including Ocean Waves, Rockport, TX, The Friendly Squares, Corpus Christi TX and the Bluff Prom, in Flour Bluff, TX.

In June 2003 a long awaited dream came true for Winona as she traveled to Alaska and went on a 2000 mile journey with David and Lynn Loomis. The highlight of the trip was when she stood on the Arctic Circle and saw the sun rise and 17 minutes later saw the sun set. It was wonderful she expressed to her family!

At home she enjoyed sewing, quilting, cross stich, writing letters, baking, making candy with the magic touch of creating the best fluffy Divinity candy for the holidays and snacking on popcorn while watching basketball games on TV.

In 2013 Winona moved to Spencer and became a resident of St. Luke’s. She died peacefully there on the morning of December 5, 2019. She was preceded in death by her husband, Dick, her parents and brother. She is survived by her children: Jane Purcell (Doug) of Richmond, TX, Randy Loomis (Jill) of Emmetsburg, and Joanne Thies (Kevin) of Lee’s Summit, MO; grandchildren Sarah Purcell, Chad Loomis, Shelby Loomis, Erin Thies and Griffin Thies. Her brother-in law David Loomis and was known as Aunt Noni to her many nieces and nephews who she loved dearly.

She was proceed in death by her husband C. Richard Loomis, parents Clark Reed, Myrtle Reed her brother Dick Reed and numerous relatives and friends.

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