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Norma Lee (Lenocker) Wahlert (2024)


Posted By: Kathi Kuhl
Date: 2/27/2024 at 17:12:00

Johnson Family Funeral Home
Stuart, Iowa

Norma Lee Lenocker Wahlert was born January 11, 1928, in a farmhouse located south of Dexter, Iowa. She passed away on February 26, 2024, at the age of 96. Norma was the first-born child welcomed into the home of Frantz Moore Lenocker and Florence Geraldine Wells Lenocker. Following her birth, the threesome moved a short distance into the newly-built brick house on the Lenocker family farm. In subsequent years she greeted two sisters and a brother: Daisy Maddy, Ted Lenocker, and Linda Bobst.

Norma was born, raised, and spent her entire life in the Dexter area. Her education began in a one-room country school, then on to Dexter Public School where she graduated from Dexter High School in 1945. While in high school she enjoyed playing basketball. Upon graduation, she attended the American Institute of Business and then worked briefly at Firestone Tire in Des Moines and later at Drew’s Candy Kitchen in Dexter. On April 10, 1948, Norma was united in marriage to her high school sweetheart, Ronald Junior Wahlert, with whom she spent nearly 73 years, until his death on March 30, 2021. To this union, four children were born: Fran Wierson (Craig); Bradley Wahlert (Melodie); Rhonda Simmons (Dan); and Becky Dilbeck (Greg). Norma leaves eight grandchildren to mourn her passing: Chad Wierson; Cory Wierson; Allison Hardy; Ashlee Loewen; JD Simmons; Cody Simmons; Jessica Dilbeck; and Danielle Dilbeck. In addition, twelve great-grandchildren were privileged to know Norma before she departed this earth. Norma was preceded in death by her parents, husband Ron, and brother, Ted.

Norma’s working career outside the home was short-lived as, upon the birth of her first child, she chose to become a full-time, stay-at-home mom. She was always there for her family, and her kids knew she’d be there every day when they arrived home from school.

Norma loved working outdoors and much preferred that to being stuck inside the house. Nonetheless, she proved to be a good cook, providing tasty and substantial meals to her growing, active family. Lots of fun family “get-togethers” were enjoyed at the Wahlert home, with Norma’s food as the centerpiece. Keeping the yard, fences, and buildings looking their best, was her passion. If Norma needed some extra spending money, she would go out in a cornfield, in the fall, and pick up a wagonload of ear corn, dropped during harvest, to sell at the Dexter elevator. She would also walk soybeans, ridding the crop of weeds for local farmers…and she actually enjoyed both of those physically demanding tasks! Norma loved livestock—especially horses—it was a natural part of her family heritage. She made sure there was always a horse or two around the farm.

Ron and Norma became “snowbirds” while still in their 50s. Winters were spent in various locales from Arizona, to Alabama, to Florida, and ultimately Texas. Upon full retirement, they sold the home place, and opted to live, full-time, in a travel trailer. In 2008 they gave up that nomadic lifestyle and settled down in an apartment in Earlham. But Norma so disliked the cold Iowa winters and how they inhibited her “daily walking routine,” that they continued to trek to south Texas for another seven years. Highlights during her later years were “tea time” at McDonalds, driving around the countryside and beyond, playing Cribbage with Ron nearly every evening, visiting friends and family, solving Jumble Word puzzles, and watching Wheel of Fortune and The Lawrence Welk Show.

Norma lived a full, long, and vigorous life, was dearly loved, and will be remembered fondly by her children and extended family. Now that she is once again able, she is most likely “fast walking” those golden streets of Heaven, waving to those family members and friends who have gone on before. The only thing that might slow her pace is an invitation from Ron to join him for a game of Cribbage.

May God Bless You, Mom/Grandma, until we all meet again.

You are relieved now from your physical pain
And you’ll be united with Ron, once again
So quicken your pace and don’t be late
We’ll be waiting for you at the Pearly Gate

Thank you to the staff of Hospice of the Midwest for their exceptional care and compassion.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hospice of the Midwest or Dexter Methodist Church.

Visitation will be held from 9:30 to 11:00 A.M. Monday, March 11, 2024 at the Johnson Family Funeral Home & Crematory - Stuart Chapel. Funeral services will be held at 11:00 A.M. Monday at the funeral home. Burial will follow the service in Dexter City Cemetery, Dexter, Iowa. A luncheon and time of fellowship will be held following the burial at the Dexter United Methodist Church. Online condolences may be left at johnsonfamilyfuneralhome.com.


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