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Darlene Ricker

Darlene Ricker, 94, passed away July 29 at the Clearview Home in Mount Ayr. Darlene was born September 5, 1921 in Prescott, Iowa, to Harold and Berneice Schaefer. Upon the death of her mother, at age 10 she and her brothers and sister were raised by grandparents Luther and Lillie Madison. She graduated with the class of 1939 from Mount Ayr High School, passed her teaching certification and began teaching at Washington #6 country school. On August 22, 1940, she married Eldon Ricker and after farming on two Ringgold County farms, they purchased the Ricker home farm in 1947 and lived there until retiring to Mt. Ayr in 1995.

Darlene loved the farm life and helped with all the farming activities. In addition to raising a family she was an accomplished seamstress, maintained a garden, raised chickens, and canned fruits and vegetables. Darlene and Eldon enjoyed their neighbors and continued with the local card club for many years. She spent many hours quilting at home and with friends at the Diagonal church. Golf became a passion for Eldon and Darlene and they truly enjoyed the Mount Ayr Country Club. She played into her 90's and was always a fierce competitor. Losing was not an option. She worked in the Mount Ayr Factory as a sewing machine operator, time study analyst and supervisor. Throughout her lifetime she was involved with both the Diagonal Presbyterian Church and the Mount Ayr First Christian Church.

She was a strict disciplinarian for grammar, manners, honesty, neatness and education. There was never a doubt about her position on any of these items. She set high standards and lived by them every single day.

Darlene is survived by daughter, Karen (Ed) Brown of Maryville, Mo., son, Gene (Vicki) Ricker of Ankeny, Ia., six grandchildren, Mike (Regina) Ricker, Angela (Paul) Bickford, Heidi (Larry) Blackstun, Amy (Jim) Suedmeier, Greg (Cathy) Brown, and Rachel (Bart) Tatum, twelve great grandchildren, Nicole and Reece Bickford; Connor and Kennedy Brown; Alec, Miles and Matthew Tatum; Daniel, Timothy and Caitlin Ricker; Tyler and Cory Suedmeier, and brother, Bob Schaefer, along with several nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by husband, Eldon; sister, Thressa and husband, Don Willey; brother, Lowell and wife, Maxine Schaefer; sister-in-law, Betty Schaefer , nephew, Randy Schaefer, and great-grandchild, Maximus Tatum.

Memorial funds will be established by the family for the HCI Hospice and the First Christian Church.

  • Open Viewing

    August 02, 2016
    12:00 PM to 8:00 PM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Family Will Be Present

    August 02, 2016
    6:00 PM to 7:30 PM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Family Will Be Present

    August 03, 2016
    10:00 AM to 11:00 AM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Funeral Service

    August 03, 2016
    11:00 AM

    Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home

    205 West Monroe St
    Mount Ayr, IA

  • Burial

    Wednesday August 03 2016

    Bohemian Cemetery

    Diagonal, IA


To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Darlene Ricker, please visit our flower store.



Guestbook

sorry for your loss

Posted by Elton Sackett    August 07, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Karen, Gene, and family, sorry for your loss.. I think Darlene and Eldon ''stood up'' for mom and dad when they got married. Earliest memory I have with them was a trip to Omaha to see Boys Town. Dad had 46 Ford coupe and Eldon probably had a Pontiac or something fast. Heated the food on the engine block and hung canvas bags of water outside to keep cool. And who could forget the card parties that our parents had with the Diagonal neighbors on Saturday night. Always looked forward to when we visited the Rickers. Darlene was one of the nicest women I knew.

Posted by Don Jones - Washington, IA - Friend   August 04, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Darlene was friendly and we would smile at each other and say Hi both at the assisted living and at the NH. We both worked at the Mt Ayr Mfg plant. That was really hard work but Darlene always was happy and smiling. She was a very nice person and I''ll miss seeing her when I visit my Mom. Sorry for you loss.
Sincerely
Shirley

Posted by Shirley Hightshoe - Mt Ayr, IA - Acquaintance   August 02, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Sorry for the passing of your mom. It''s not easy to be an orphan even at our age. I know your many memories will bring joy as you remember her. Love, Charlene

Posted by Charlene Greene - Friend   August 02, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Karen and Gene--I''m so sorry you have lost your mom. Your very well- written obituary describes well the Darlene I knew. I send sympathy to you and your families. Helen Newton

Posted by Helen Newton - Newton, IA - Neighbor   August 02, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Thinking of you and your family at this sad time. Prayers and peace to you all.

Posted by Quita Koehler - Winterset, IA - Classmate   August 01, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

Karen and Gene and families : so sorry to hear about Darlene. She was a wonderful lady. Your parents were great neighbors to have in the country life...they were a strong support to all of the neighborhood kids..Enjoyed going to visit them. They had two wonderful children. So sorry for your loss know you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Posted by Mary Lee Foltz - Creston, IA - Friend   July 31, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

I got to know Darlene''s husband Eldon Ricker (1917-2008) in his later years in connection with his volunteer work with the Grade School History Tours at the Ringgold County Museum in Ellston. His death and funeral occurred when I was recuperating from major surgery at Mercy Hospital in Des Moines and I had no opportunity to pay my respects at his decease. I knew Darlene only slightly. But I was impressed to write this tribute to both Eldon and Darlene after reading the tribute Raymond & Donna Shields made as to how Darlene was such a wonderful neighbor when they and the Shields lived on nearby farms in the Diagonal community (before Eldon and Darlene moved to Mount Ayr).

Some years ago Wayne Anderson, now deceased, made a random comment to me that Eldon Ricker was the best neighbor he had ever had. So Eldon and Darlene must have shared similar values and virtues.

Posted by Raymond Banner - Creston, IA - Acquaintance   July 31, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

So very sorry for the loss of your Mom, Gene. I didn''t know here well, but she was such a sweet lady. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

Posted by Claudia Schwienebart - Baxter, IA - Friend   July 31, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

She was a very sweet lady, she will be greatly missed.

Posted by Eric Montiel - Lenox, IA - Acquaintance   July 31, 2016

Nov 30 0001 12:00 AM

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