Members of the Month2018-06-09T16:54:51+00:00

Members of the Month

Dorothy Tibben

Dorothy has lived at 800 Chestnut for abut 5 years. Joyce Hinkel and Janet Klute are 2 of her 4 daughters.  She was born SE of Anita at her grandparents’ home, the oldest of 10 children;  8 of the children are still alive. Her parents farmed. Dorothy attended country school in Anita.  The family later lived south of Adair. She was baptized as a child and confirmed at Immanuel when she was a freshman in High School.  Dorothy graduated from Adair High School in 1948. They recently had their 70th reunion with 5 of the 24 graduates in attendance.   During high school she sang in choir and played tuba in the band.

In November, 1948, Dorothy was married to Robert Tibben, whom she met through a friend. They were married at Immanuel, Adair. Robert was a farmer and they farmed near St. John’s Lutheran.  Here they raised their 5 children. Besides Joyce and Janet, their children include Virginia, living in Pleasantville, and Kathy living in Des Moines.  Their son Vernon is deceased.  She has 6 grandchildren and 17 great grandchildren.  They were active members of St. John’s.  Dorothy was an LWML officer and for a while the family was responsible for cleaning the church and mowing the lawn. She was also a 4H leader.  Dorothy raised a big garden and did a lot of canning.

In December, 1983, they were involved in a bad car accident.  Dorothy spent 101 days recovering in Iowa Methodist Hospital in Des Moines. Robert went to a nursing home until his death in 1987.  Dorothy moved to Atlantic about 1984 where she lived in the trailer court for 30 years.  Over the years she has worked at the Pines as a grill cook and at the Redwood.  She has done some traveling, visiting Australia, Ireland and the Fiji Islands.  She has also traveled in the United States, including New York and California, each 3 times.  On one of her New York trips she went to Carnegie Hall where her daughter Kathy was singing. Kathy belongs to the Des Moines Plymouth Congregational Church and sings in their large choir.   The family has their annual get together in the Community building in Anita each year on the 2nd Sunday in January.  Up to 70 people will attend.  Dorothy enjoys her life at 800 Chestnut and spends a lot of time sewing and reading.  On television she likes the Iowa Public Television station.

We wish her God’s blessing in the years ahead!


January 28th, 2019|

Joyce Hinkel

Joyce, the oldest of 5 children, was born in Audubon on January 8, 1950. Her parents farmed near St. John’s Lutheran, rural Adair. One of her sisters is Janet Klute. She attended school in Exira, where she enjoyed science classes and sang in the Chorus. Upon graduation she attended the University of Iowa, working toward a BSN Degree. Joyce was able to work part time while attending school. Upon graduation she worked at Clarkson in Omaha in the Renal Dialysis unit. This offered her the opportunity to earn Credit toward her school loan. She was married in 1972 and soon after moved to Kansas City. Here she worked at the Bethany Hospital in Kansas City, Kansas, in Intensive Care. While here they hosted foreign exchange students from Finland, Ecuador and Italy. They later moved to Rolla, Mo. Here they ran a campground and canoe rental business. Joyce also continued with her nursing, first at the Rolla Hospital in Intensive Care and later at The University of Missouri Hospital in Columbia, Missouri. She worked three 12 hour shifts a week and rented a boarding room where she stayed thru these days. When their business did not prosper, Joyce moved to Columbia, Missouri where she lived for 18 years. She began working full time at the hospital. Throughout her career as a registered nurse in Columbia she worked in Intensive Care, Surgical, and the Burn units.

After 25 years of marriage Joyce was divorced. She continued to work full time in Columbia. Where she was active in the Lutheran Church, including playing hand bells. Her other activities included crocheting, and doing prayer shawls, doing a lot of reading. She also enjoyed canoeing and bowling. After suffering a fall in 2003, Joyce, thru different  tests that were done, was diagnosed with Huntington’s  Chorea disease. Although there is no cure for Huntington’s, they have identified the defective gene. Joyce takes medication to control the Chorea movement part of the disease and has done very well on it.

In 2005 Joyce moved to Heritage House in Atlantic. She resided in independent living until Feb. 1, 2018, at which time she moved to Harmony Cove in the nursing area. Her current roommate is Mary Chase, another member of Zion. Joyce participates in exercises, bingo, vespers, and bus rides. She is a member of the Joy Circle at Zion. Recently she attended her 50th High School reunion in Brayton. One of her classmates is another Zion member, Pat Hansen.

Over the years Joyce has been able to do some traveling. She has been to Anaheim, Las Vegas and New York City. In New York she was able to hear her sister, Kathy, and brother-in-law Chuck Cumming, sing in Carnegie Hall. We wish Joyce God’s blessings as she spends her days at the Heritage House. She is located in Harmony Cove room C14. and enjoys visitors.

December 28th, 2018|


Tim and Mary, both from farming backgrounds, recently became members of Zion. Mary, the youngest of 3 children was born in Ft. Dodge. After a year of country school, she attended school in Vincent and Eagle Grove, and graduated from Arnolds Park High School where she sang in the choir. She then attended Northwest Institute in Minneapolis, learning to be a Medical Lab Technician.  Tim grew up in Connersville, Indiana, with one older brother. He was active in 4-H, and played basketball. He attended country school through the 8th grade, graduating from Connersville High School. He then went to Northwestern Institute, where he met Mary.

They were married a year later. Due to a minor car accident on their rehearsal night, Mary went to her wedding with a broken nose and black eye. Prior to the wedding, Tim lost his glasses. A friend discovered them in his car, and he put them on walking down the aisle. The day after the wedding they drove 900 miles to Indiana.  They renewed their vows in 2011.

Their jobs as Lab Technicians took them to Connersville, Indiana, Ft. Morgan, Colorado, Denver, Colorado, and Beach, North Dakota. Beach was a lonely place and they had to travel miles to do their shopping.  In April, 1982, they moved to Atlantic to be closer to family. They have lived in their current home since April, 1983. Besides Atlantic, they have also worked in Jennie Ed, Council Bluffs, and for a number of years in the Harlan Hospital. Mary retired in 2012 and Tim in 2014.

They have 4 children: Jennie, married and living in Boone; Justin, married and living in Michigan with 2 children; Matt, married and living in Colorado with 3 children, and Margaret living in Hastings, Nebraska,with one child. They have always been strong church members, Mary grew up Lutheran and Tim Methodist. He joined the Lutheran Church in 1980. Former members of St. Paul’s and Holy Trinity Lutheran churches, where they both held leadership positions, they joined Zion in September this year.

On the third Sunday of the month they show religious based videos at the Heritage House. They also play Bridge there on Wednesday and Friday afternoons. Tim previously belonged to the Optimist Club. They both like to play golf and are Hospice volunteers. They both will be singing in the Atlantic Community Choir, which will be performing a Cantata on Friday, Dec. 21, at the High School. They also are singing in Zion’s choir. Tim and Mary have taken several bus trips with friends. Among other places, they would like to visit Noah’s Ark museum in Kentucky and the Bible museum in Washington, D.C. Their dog, Eddie, completes their family. We look forward to their involvement at Zion and wish them God’s blessings.


November 30th, 2018|

Wilma Porter

This month we feature Wilma Porter, who lives at Avoca Lodge Assisted Living in Avoca. She recently celebrated her 90th birthday and received over 100 cards.  Wilma was born in Persia, Iowa where her parents farmed.  The oldest of her two older brothers, Elmer, was born in Germany.  She and her older brother Herb were born here in the United States.  Until age 14, Wilma attended country school near Persia.  When the family moved into town, Wilma remembers the fun of going to free movies on Saturday night. It was a difficult time on the farm.  All three children were sent at an early age to work and live in the homes of others while their father suffered and passed away from tuberculosis.  At 17, Wilma went to work in Council Bluffs, waitressing and doing housework.  She met her future husband Hubert attending a dance in Atlantic.  They were married October 2, 1950 at First Lutheran near Wiota, Hugh’s home church.  Wilma was later confirmed and joined the church. Since they always made their home in Atlantic, they soon transferred their membership to Zion.  Hugh worked construction and later worked as a mechanic and a service advisor at Henningsen’s, Merner’s, and Deter Motors.  Hugh fought in WWII and was awarded the Bronze Star for heroism at the Battle of the Bulge.  Their only child, Peggy, lives in Walnut with her husband, Gene.  Peggy grew up and was confirmed at Zion where Wilma also taught Sunday School. Peggy has two daughters, Christine (who died in a car accident after college) and Melissa, who is married to John Sorrick.  The Sorricks have two children: John Hugh, 4, and Luna Christine, 18 months. Wilma has two grandchildren, 2 great-grandchildren and 4 step-great-grandchildren.

Wilma worked at Heritage House in dietetics for 25 years.  She was a 4-H leader and a Brownie leader. She and Hugh never missed attending school activities of their children and grandchildren.  Wilma is a life member of American Legion Auxiliary and VFW Auxiliary.  The family spent many weekends camping, fishing, and water skiing.  For years, their house always seemed to be the gathering place of extended family on Thursday evenings and Sunday afternoons.  Wilma would entertain all and make sure no one went away hungry.  As  Herb’s health declined, Wilma cared for him at home for many years.  Thank you, Wilma, for your many years of service at Zion.  God’s blessings to you.


September 28th, 2018|


Jeanie was born on January 31, 1948 near Casey, and was adopted at 3 days old.  Her adoptive parents were Jim and Irma Willey, who farmed east of Exira. She had 3 half-brothers and 4 half-sisters.  She attended country school until 1960. In her Jr. year they moved to Audubon, where she graduated in 1966.   Jeanie worked at various jobs over the years, including Double J Beauty Shop where she was a cosmetologist for 3 years—Bartender at Elks Club and Country Club—Preferred Risk Insurance Company —and Good Samaritan in Fontanelle, where she helped with laundry and activities.

She was married out of High School for a year, before divorcing.  During that time her oldest child, Bryan, was born.  She remained single until Bryan was 10, at which time she married Elwood Hansen on June 19, 1978. Elwood adopted Bryan in 1979.  Elwood and Jeanie had attended school together.  Elwood farmed with his dad in Brayton until 1983, at which time he went back to driving a truck, which he did until 2005.  They lived in Casey until August, 2007 when they moved to Atlantic.  Elwood has several health problems, beginning with brain surgery when he was 15.  He eventually had back surgery.  Elwood died on January 15, 2015.   They had 2 children, Becky, who is married to Mike Dreager, who farms and does custom work.  Becky works for 21st Century Co-op.  They have 2 boys and a girl.  Also Brenda, who is married to Brad Gettler.  He works for West Central Fabrications.  They have a girl and a boy.   Bryan’s only child, Elizabeth, graduated in May 2010 and was killed in a car accident August 17, 2010.  He is engaged to Lisa Nelson Lehman, and they will be married on May 18, 2019.   Jeanie’s first great grandchild will be coming the first part of December. The parents  are Clint Hansen and Calley Klindt.

Jeanie has been very active in the church, joining the Lutheran Church when she married Elwood.   At Zion she is currently Outreach chairman.  She has been LWML President and works on prayer shawls. They have made 500 shawls since 2010   She also participates in Operation Barnabus, where she serves on the District Task Force.  She was a delegate this year to both our District convention and the LWML District Convention.   She is also on the Foundation Board for Camp Okoboji.   Having recently bought a new sewing machine, she hopes to make use of it.   She also crochets.  When possible she enjoys attending the races at Corning.  Jeanie has a lot of involvement with her family, which she really enjoys.    She seldom misses the July 4 celebration in Exira. Among her memories is the flood of 1958.

We wish her God’s continued blessing in her years ahead.


August 29th, 2018|

Ralph Beck

Ralph was born in Calhoun County near Lake City on November 18, 1938. He has a sister in Coon Rapids and his brother died of a heart attack at the age of 44. His dad was a hired hand and turned into a farmer. Ralph grew up in Audubon County and attended country school. He graduated from Lytton High School in 1957, where he ran track for a year. There being no money for college, Ralph joined the air Force, where he served stateside for 4 years, doing teletype maintenance.  Following the service he worked at several jobs, including running a home delivery for a bread route and selling insurance in the Des Moines area. He then went to work for Gambles, a hardware and furniture store. This job brought him to Atlantic in 1970. He owned the store for a year. Ralph then went to work for Mahle, where he was employed for over 30 years. He is now retired.

Ralph has been married 3 times. He was married to his first wife Betty for 7 years. Their children are Susan, who lives in Oregon, and Steven, who at the age of 17, was killed in a motorcycle accident on the first day of the fair. His second wife was Elaine, to whom he was married for 29 years. She died of cancer. They had Renae who is married to Scott Steffens, who runs the Steffens Motorcycle shop.

He was then married to Paula for 5 years. Ralph has 3 grandchildren and several step grandchildren.

Ralph enjoys tropical fish. He used to garden quite a bit, but health concerns have limited this activity. Ralph had a stroke in April, and is making a recovery which he hopes will allow him to drive soon. Most of his traveling took place when he was working for Gambles, including trips to Las Vegas. Since his stroke he spends a lot of time watching TV, enjoying the westerns and game shows. Ralph hopes to get back to church in time to sing in the choir. He has also helped usher. Currently a friend, Vicki, stays with him as his caregiver.  They live at 1501 Birch Street;  2 dogs and 2 cats complete the household.  We hope to see you back in church soon, Ralph!  God’s blessings in your recovery.


August 1st, 2018|