Lorna Zupke

Lorna Zupke



Our beloved wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother, Lorna Ruth Zupke, 91, died peacefully at her home in Randalia on Nov. 11, 2018. 

Lorna, daughter of Cora (Rolfe) and Floyd Durey was born on Feb. 19, 1927 near Dundee, Iowa. A

fter graduating from Fayette High School, she received a teacher’s certificate from Upper Iowa University in 1946. She then taught at a country school on W14, four miles south of Hawkeye. 

She married Vaylard Lloyd Zupke on Dec. 4, 1947 at Fayette Wesleyan Church, where Lorna was a charter member.

First and foremost in Lorna’s life was her love for Jesus and her desire to serve Him. She was a godly woman of great faith and a dedicated servant of our Lord. 

In a letter written to a granddaughter, Lorna wrote, “That first year in high school at Fayette was a turning point in my life, for in October of that year (1940), I received Jesus Christ as my Savior. He forgave my sins and came into my heart! What a wonderful change that was – the Lord just filled my young heart with His peace, joy and love for Jesus and His Word, the Bible!”

Her career started as a classroom teacher and moved to being a mother of eight; she was Zupke Sand & Gravel’s receptionist, secretary and accountant. Lorna was still working when she had a stroke in February.

Gardening, canning the produce of those gardens, feeding birds, sewing and making dolls were some of Lorna’s talents and delights. Her gift of hospitality often caused her table to be set with an extra place or two…for the constant flow of houseguests and visitors. These could be family members, missionaries home on furlough, college students, travelers with broken vehicles, Vietnamese refugees and so many more. These guests quickly became part of the Zupke extended family. A favorite of everyone’s was Lorna’s oatmeal rolls, her mother’s recipe. She left a legacy of kindness and generosity. 

Lorna loved to sing.  She could often be heard singing or humming hymns and psalms set to music, as she would go throughout her daily activities.  She was often asked to sing for weddings and funerals, which she did joyfully.

Survivors include her husband, Vaylard; daughters Deborah (David) McCormick of Shellsburg, IA and Lois (Randy) Byars of Lexington, S.C.; sons Mark (Ruth) of Logan, Minn., Andrew (Marilyn) of Prophetstown, Ill., Jon (Debra) of Larrabee, IA, Sam (Margo) of Lakeville, Minn., and Stephen (Ann) of Randalia, IA; her sisters, Eloise Kaltenbach of Hazleton, IA and Shirley Thrall of Calimesa, Calif.; her brothers, George (Lenore) Durey of Farmington, Minn., and Darin (Eva) Durey of Fredericktown, Mo. Lorna has 31 grandchildren and 31 great-grandchildren. 

Lorna was preceded in death by her parents; her son, Daniel Jay; six sisters, Charlotte Fawcett, Margaret Downing, Marian Stewart, Arline Nobel, Joanne Stawn and Carol Durey (infancy); and five brothers, Howard Durey (in WWII), Lucius Durey, Forrest Durey, Paul Durey, and Dale Durey (infancy).

Psalm 16:11: “In thy presence is fullness of joy and at thy right hand are pleasures for evermore” was sung and celebrated at Fayette’s Grandview Cemetery during a private family committal on Nov. 13.

Visitation will be held on Friday, Nov. 30, at the Oelwein Community Plaza, 25 W. Charles St., Oelwein, IA from 2 to 7 p.m. 

A Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, Dec. 1 at the Sumner-Fredericksburg High School Auditorium, 802 West Sixth Street, Sumner, Iowa at 10 a.m.

Cards may be sent to 17963 150th Street, Randalia IA 52164.

Memorials may be made to the Gideons at P.O. Box 446, Oelwein, Iowa 50662. 

Memories and condolences may be shared at www.beckermilnesrettig.com.

Becker-Milnes Funeral Home in Sumner is assisting the family.         48u48



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