Deb Tweedy

Deb Tweedy, 63, of Waukon died Saturday, May 12, 2018 at Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon. Memorial services will be held Saturday, May 19 at 11 a.m. at the Waukon High School gymnasium with Pastor Bill Odermann officiating. Visitation will be held from 4-7 p.m. Friday, May 18 at St. John’s Lutheran Church fellowship hall in Waukon.

Martin Funeral Home in Waukon is handling arrangements. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Veterans Memorial Hospital, Good Samaritan Center in Waukon and the Allamakee Community Schools Booster Clubs.

Debra Elayne Tweedy was born July 26, 1954 to Delbert R. and Myrna Wynema (Potter) Kaune in Maynard. She started her life on a dairy farm near Fayette. Her mother passed away at a very young age, and she was very close to her older sister, Janice, who helped raise her.

Deb was always one of the tallest kids in school and fell in love with the sport of basketball at a young age; she’d play basketball on the farm to pass the time. Her tenacity and dedication to the sport developed her into one of the finest basketball players in the state of Iowa. In 1972, she was a two-time All-State forward for West Central High School of Maynard, an All-Tournament Team selection in 1972 as the leading scorer, and led the team to a third-place finish at the Iowa High School Girls Basketball State Tournament.

After the basketball season in 1971, while she was running in a track meet at North Fayette, some of the Oelwein track athletes made their way over to talk to the West Central girls. Wayne Saur and Alan Tweedy were amongst the Oelwein boys that fell “head over heels” for the West Central girls. Al pleaded for a date with Deb and she reluctantly agreed.

Deb graduated from West Central of Maynard in the spring of 1972 and attended the University of Northern Iowa in search of a degree in physical education. After three years of dating, Al proposed to Deb in Wichita, KS over Christmas break in 1973.

July 26, 1974, Deb’s birthday, Deb and Al were married in Arlington at St. John’s Lutheran Church. They moved to Rochester, MN in 1974, where Deb worked at the Methodist Hospital pharmacy. In 1975, she transferred to Upper Iowa University to finish her studies and graduated with a degree in science in 1977.

Her first, and only, place of employment was with the Allamakee Community School District starting in the fall of 1977. She was the varsity assistant coach of the 1979 Waukon girls basketball team that played in the Iowa State Girls Basketball Tournament.

Over the course of her 41-year career in education she taught many different subjects, including high school biology, physical education, health and anatomy/physiology, as well as elementary school physical education. Teaching within the community of Waukon was her passion.

She was known for being a no-nonsense teacher, never sugar coating her instruction. Her compassion, empathy, humor and professionalism drove her teaching style. She was recognized with a National Award in 2014 from the Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention program as the top teacher. Her 41 years of teaching gave her an opportunity to touch the thousands of lives of her colleagues and students.

She was an active mother of three boys and would sometimes use her teaching connections to keep the boys in line. Her favorite things to do with her boys included riding her Harley “Helen,” going to the Mississippi River to knock the boys off the ‘tube, being the loudest mom in the stands for numerous sporting events, driving the cross country cart at the home meets, and running the starter pistol for swim meets. She never missed a meet, game or competitive event and enjoyed driving all over the United States to watch her boys compete in athletic events.

She also enjoyed traveling overseas to Japan and England to see her family. Her granddaughter was the highlight of her life over the past 18 months and Deb constantly shared pictures of her little Charli.

Deb had a gift for gardening and her green thumb resulted in one of prettiest perennial gardens in the state. She tended to it daily and it grew from a few plants to hundreds of plants throughout the last 15 years. She enjoyed reading her morning prayers as she watched the sunrise over her plants. Her garden told the story of her life.

Deb’s legacy of instruction, love, motherhood, compassion, empathy and warrior spirit will be missed by her community, family, husband, sons and Charli. If she were here, she’d comfort us by telling us to “remember who you are” and to “be strong and courageous for the Lord God is with you wherever you should go”.

She is survived by her husband, Alan, of Waukon; her children: Joshua (Charmaine) Tweedy of Las Vegas, NV, Seth Tweedy of Houston, TX and Marcus Tweedy of Des Moines; her grandchildren: Charli and Baby Tweedy (due August 2018); her siblings: Janice (Theodore) Gamm of Wabasha, MN and Norman (Constance) Kaune of Mount Vernon, OH; along with many beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.

Deb was preceded in death by her parents, Delbert and Myrna Kaune; her father- and mother-in-law, William and Barbara Tweedy; and family friend Gretchen Stangeland.

Honorary casketbearers are former and present educators. Online condolences may be left at www.martinfunerals.com.
 

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