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Elsie Eva Foerstner, 28 Mar 1917 - 30 Apr 2914


Posted By: Sandy Ficken (email)
Date: 5/12/2014 at 13:22:53

Elsie Foerstner, 97

Funeral service for Elsie E. Foerstner, 97, was held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 7, at the Middle Amana Church. She died April 30, 2014, under hospice care in her Chicago apartment.

Church elder Harold Pitz officiated at the service.

Burial was in the South Amana Cemetery.

Memorials may be made to the University of Iowa Foundation (http://www.uifoundation.org) or the Amana Heritage Society, P.O. 81, Amana, Iowa 52203.

Kloster Funeral Home, Marengo was in charge of arrangements.

Elsie Eva Foerstner was a woman ahead of her times. She helped trailblaze a high school education for students in the Amana Colonies in Iowa in 1931. Not many teens had access to high school prior to that in the colonies, the religious community where she was born March 28, 1917, the daughter of Carl and Wilhelmine Heistermann Foerstner. She dreamed of going to college, and a state legislator, impressed by this young girl’s ability to quite one of his speeches verbatim, found her a job in state government in Des Moines. She saved almost every dime to go to the University of Iowa.

She majored in business, graduated in 1941 and moved to Chicago, building a career at Kraft Foods. She came to town just months before the attack on Pearl Harbor brought America into World War II and she volunteered with service organizations such as the USO as newly enlisted troops poured through the city.

She returned home frequently to Iowa to visit family and cheer on the Hawkeyes for home games. A world traveler, she explored Europe, India, China, Japan, South Korea, Egypt, Israel and many other spots. She served as the president of the University of Iowa Alumni Association Chicago and as the chaplain of her Chicago P.E.O. Chapter.

She loved to harmonize songs and recite poems with her oldest brother, William, who lived in Chicago. She enjoyed talking politics and business with her older brother, Harold, an engineer in Yuma, Ariz. Nieces and nephews and their children and grandchildren adored visits with Aunt Elsie.

Foerstner is survived and celebrated by her nieces and nephews, Carl Foerstner, Abigail Foerstner (Arthur Caudy), June Foerstner Lee (Ken), Clarke Foerstner, Jim Foerstner (Debbie), Lee Wayne Foerstner (Sylvia) and Rick Foerstner; 19 grandnieces and grandnephews and 27 great-grandnieces and great-grandnephews.

She was preceded in death by two brothers.

The Williamsburg Journal Tribune, 08 May 2014 & 22 May 2014 (corrected)
The Gazette, 04 May 2014


Iowa Obituaries maintained by Steve Williams.
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