Mary Ann Madrigal

Mary Ann Madrigal, age 85, of Decorah passed away peacefully with family by her side Thursday, February 11, 2021 at home. A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial was held Thursday, February 18 at St. Benedict Catholic Church in Decorah with Rev. Donald Hertges officiating.

Mary Ann Bernadette (McGeough) Madrigal was born September 29, 1935 at Hall Maternity Hospital in Waukon to Bernard and Bernice (Meehan) McGeough.  She graduated from Waterville High School in Waterville in 1953. After high school, she was recruited by Brammer Manufacturing to work and play Women’s AAU basketball in Davenport. Little did Mary Ann know that she would then meet her life partner, Manuel Joseph Madrigal, who played on the Brammer Manufacturing men’s team.

They soon married May 28, 1955. Shortly thereafter, Susan was born, followed by Dino, Timothy, Larry, Jon, Lisa, Charles and Andrea. After the death of their son, Tim, while Mary Ann was working at Donutland in Davenport, she was approached by Joe Whitty to purchase a Happy Joe’s Pizza and Ice Cream Parlor franchise in Decorah. They moved half the family to northeast Iowa and happily served the community as restaurant owners for nearly 40 years. Many employees thought of Mary Ann as their second mother, as well as an exceptional boss.

While in Decorah, Mary Ann stayed active, joining many community exercise classes, as well as playing Granny Basketball with the NE Iowa Great Dames, participating well into her 70s. One of her personal highlights was playing at halftime during the University of Northern Iowa women’s basketball game where her granddaughter, Rachel, played basketball. She always loved attending her grandchildren’s numerous school and athletic events.

Mary Ann also enjoyed traveling, theater, a good glass of red wine, along with a challenging game of euchre. When playing euchre, you wanted to make sure you were Mary Ann’s partner and not her opponent. Mary Ann’s many loves included Thanksgiving gatherings at her sister’s house in Davenport with extended family, where she was known to be the best mashed potato maker in the world!

Mary Ann enjoyed watching any and all sports that included a ball, sitting outside in the sunshine, and watching the parade at Nordic Fest where she visited with friends, customers and former employees. The Winneshiek County Fair was also one of her favorite outings. Mary Ann enjoyed participating in the ‘Old Lady Luncheon’ with former employees. Proud of her Irish Heritage, Mary Ann attended quite a few Milwaukee Irish Festivals with her family and friends.

Mary Ann is survived by her seven children: Susan (Michael) Keith of Bettendorf, Dino (Sandy) Madrigal of Davenport, Larry (Janet) Madrigal of Joliet, IL, Jon (Marcia) Madrigal of Decorah, Lisa (Dan) Coate of Polk City, Charlie Madrigal of Vicenza, Italy and Andrea (Ron) Heins of Decorah; her tabby cat, Ellie; her grandchildren: Jason (Kristi) Briggs of Phoenix, AZ, Jennifer (Garrett) Weymouth of Glen Ellyn, IL, Michael Madrigal of Naperville, IL, Matthew Madrigal of Chicago, IL, Elizabeth (Ryan) Graf of Madison, WI, Rachel (Ryan) Grenko of Cedar Falls and Anna Madrigal (special friend Ryan Crum) of Madison, WI; her great-grandchildren: Elsa Weymouth, Alex Weymouth, Colton Briggs, Caleb Briggs, Sophia Graf, Oliver Grenko and Amelie Grenko; her siblings: Richard (Bridget dec.) McGeough of Port St. Lucie, FL, Colleen Crosthwaite of Modesto, CA, Kathleen (Rick) Eshelman of Davenport and Jane (Mike) Sullivan of Evergreen Park, IL; as well as many loving nieces, nephews and cousins.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Manny Madrigal, March 7, 2016; one son, Tim Madrigal, July 24, 1976; her parents, Bernard and Bernice (Meehan) McGeough; and her parents in-law, Luis and Luisa Madrigal.

“Be not burdened with tears of sorrow. Enjoy the sunshine of tomorrow.” ~ Irish Blessing

Fjelstul Funeral Home in Decorah served the family. Online condolences may be made at

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