PAW PAW - Lauretta A. Iversen, 107, of Paw Paw, passed away Aug. 23, 2020 at Heritage Health, Mendota.
Due to the coronavirus, there will be a private family funeral at Rollo Congregational Church in Rollo on Saturday, Aug. 29 with Pastor David Marquardt officiating. Private graveside service will follow at Wyoming Cemetery in Paw Paw.
Lauretta Alice Ferguson was born Aug. 2, 1913 in Willow Creek Township, Lee County, north of Paw Paw, to Omer and Lillie (King) Ferguson. She married her soul mate, Arnold Iversen, on Aug. 29, 1931. He preceded her in death in 1979.
Survivors include one son, Gilbert and Barbara (Landers) Iversen of Paw Paw; three grandchildren, Kimberlee and Glenn Fox of Paw Paw, Corey and Julie (Todd) Iversen of Earlville, and Gay and Donald Sellers of Earlville; eight great-grandchildren; 16 great-great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband; her parents and step-father, Lawrence “Shorty” Gallagher; her brother and sister-in-law, Donald and Wilma (Braid) Ferguson; and so many wonderful friends.
Lauretta grew up in the Paw Paw and Rollo area. She started school in first grade at Rollo School, riding her horse four miles to attend. She met the love of her life, Arnold Iversen, at a dance held at the school. She said, “I liked Arnold from the moment I saw him.” They dated throughout her high school years and she graduated from Rollo High School in June of 1931 as the valedictorian. Following high school, she married Arnold at the Paw Paw Baptist Church in Paw Paw and they began a life of farming. Two years later, their son Gilbert was born. After a lot of hard work, they were able to purchase their own farm in 1943, which is still the family homestead today. She often talked of the good old farm days, when they purchased their first tractor by trading a horse, a cow, and some cash. Later on, around 1949, they bought their first semi-truck and trailer and started their own business as Iversen & Son Trucking. “You call, we haul” was their slogan. Arnold, Gilbert and hired men hauled livestock, grain and freight locally and to many different states. Lauretta always said Arnold did the hard work and she ran the books. She taught herself how to keep the books and finances of the trucking business and the farm. There was nothing this lady couldn’t do or figure out. Gilbert later took over the trucking business and Lauretta retired from farming at the young age of 98.
Through their 47 years of marriage, Lauretta and Arnold loved to travel everywhere and visited 48 states with very dear friends of theirs. They had a very loyal hired man, Chuck Zimmerman, who ran the farm and their son, Gilbert ran the trucking business, which he later took over. After her husband passed away, she continued farming and traveled to Hawaii and Alaska to complete seeing all 50 states. This very special lady had a thirst for knowledge and never stopped learning or teaching. Lauretta always made time for family. Early in the years, she so enjoyed having the grandchildren on the farm. In later years, she would take her great-grandchildren to McDonalds for lunch, to the park, for combine rides, or shopping at John Deere or Hello Kitty store - wonderful memories of them spending the night with her. She was a loving, devoted mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, great-great-grandmother and aunt. We will miss her so much.
Memorials may be directed to the Paw Paw Fire Department/Ambulance or Rollo Congregational Church, where she was the oldest living member of the church. Please visit www.TormanFuneralHome.com to sign the online guest book.