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Kestel, Mary A. (1929-2017)


Posted By: Paul Nagy (email)
Date: 11/25/2017 at 21:56:13

Mary A. Kestel
January 3, 1929 - November 1, 2017

Mary Alice (Smith) Kestel, 88, of Storm Lake, passed away peacefully while surrounded by her family on November 1, 2017, at the Methodist Manor in Storm Lake, Iowa.

The youngest daughter of Frank Donald and Madelyne (Grable) Smith, Mary was born on January 3, 1929, in Peoria, Illinois. She had fond memories of Peoria. Prominent in business and the community, her family co-owned the Clark-Smith Wholesale Hardware Company. In 1940, however, she moved with her family to Storm Lake. She described her childhood as one of playing backyard games with the neighbor kids and staying busy with many school activities. Her high school year book described her as ‘dark and striking’ and ‘always loads of fun’.

After graduating, Mary became a bank teller at Security National Bank. While searching for watermelons with girlfriends on the Kestel farm, this Storm Lake high school homecoming queen with that twinkle in her blue eyes and adventure in her heart met Bill Kestel. They married on January 5, 1953, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. Following their wedding, they moved to Reno, Nevada, where Bill was stationed at Stead Air Force Base. After Bill’s discharge, they returned to Storm Lake where they raised their four daughters, Colette, Alice, Libby, and Ann.

Not one to remain idle, Mary, always, played an active role in her church and community. She presided over the boards of St. Mary’s School, the Storm Lake YMCA, the BV Community Theatre (where she also starred onstage), St. Mary’s Guild, and the Hospital Auxillary. She, also, actively participated in the Catholic Daughters of America and the Sioux City Diocesan School Board as well as in numerous other projects and activities. Believing everyone has a civic duty to vote, she spent years as a precinct volunteer.

Once all her kids were attending school, Mary began a seventeen year career at the Nomad Travel Agency. Mary and Bill enjoyed trips from Alaska to Hawaii as well as cruises to European and Caribbean locations. Although she, frequently, played golf and exercised at the swimming pool, she most liked attending ball games. Always the fiercest advocate and loudest fan of any team involving a daughter or grandchild, she, regularly, attended their games.

A recent remark describing Mary summed up her personality well, “Wherever Mary went, the fun was sure to go.”

Those left to cherish her memory include Bill, her devoted husband of sixty-four years; her son-in-law, Tom King, of Urbandale, and his children: Brian (Erin) King, of Nantucket, Massecheusetts, David King, of Newport Beach, California, Aaron (Kelli) King, of West Des Moines, Sarah (Reggie) Voyles, of Sac City, and Lisa King, of Ankeny; her daughter, Alice Graves, and her children: Peter (Maggie) Graves and Eric Graves, all of Ventura, California, Libby Kestel, of Iowa City, and Ann (Mark) Meyer, and her children: Macy, Makenzie, Matt, and Megan, of Mason City; her sister and best friend, Dorothy (Teenie) Smith, of Storm Lake; her niece, Nettie Renshaw, of Algona; and her great-grandchildren: Sydney, Kinnick, and Charlie King; and William and Landon Voyles. Preceding Mary in death were her parents; her brother, Frank Donald Smith; her daughter, Colette King; and her granddaughter, Laura King.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered Tuesday, November 7, 2017, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Storm Lake. Burial will follow in St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery. Visitation will take place Monday, November 6, 2017, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. with a vigil service at 7:00 p.m. followed by a rosary, all at the Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Home in Storm Lake. The Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Home in Storm Lake is in charge of the arrangements.

Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Homes, Storm Lake, Iowa, 2017.


Buena Vista Obituaries maintained by Paul Nagy.
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