Norma Barr

Norma C. Barr, 95, of Waukon passed away Thursday, October 31, 2019 at the Good Samaritan Center in Waukon. Funeral services were held Tuesday, November 5 at Old East Paint Creek Lutheran Church in rural Waterville. Burial was in the church cemetery.

With the assistance of her grandmothers, Norma Christine Barr was born on the family farm near Waterville July 4, 1924 to Olvin and Esther (Gronlid) Sorenson. She attended elementary school in Waterville and later Waterville High School, where she played alto saxophone in the band and was a member of the girls’ six-player basketball team that vied for a state championship. After graduating in 1942, she attended a nursing program in Iowa City for a year before returning to northeast Iowa, where she worked for the Ration Board in Waukon during World War II.

Norma married her high school sweetheart, Chester R. Barr, Jr. May 26, 1945 when he returned from his service time in the Army Air Force. They lived in Ames briefly while he attended an agronomy course at Iowa State University. They farmed together for several years in Allamakee County. Norma was a very hard-working, dedicated farmer’s wife, mother, gardener, seamstress, cook and food preserver. A number of years later Chet and Norma began publishing Barr’s Post Card News, a weekly newspaper featuring mail auctions of post cards, stamps and other memorabilia. They spent 34 years living in the Heytman Landing area of rural Lansing before moving to Waukon in 2005.

Norma was a member of the Old East Paint Creek Lutheran Church and ladies’ circle there. She enjoyed flowers, collecting dolls, Christmas and crocheting, making many cherished gifts for her family. Her Victorian Christmas trees gave her much joy.

Survivors include her four children: Gerry (Kathryn) of Marion, Sherryl (Roger) Palmer of Omaha, NE, Craig (Becky) of Cedar Rapids and Candy (Bill) Cote’ of Cresco; 12 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; and a sister, Marilyn Ebner of Sparks, NV. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Chet, in 2007; a granddaughter, Hope Barr; and two sisters, Catherine Mannion of California and Evelyn Gable of Cedar Rapids.

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