Phyllis E. Hammer, age 86, of Cherokee, passed away on Sunday, October 06, 2019 at her home. A funeral service will be held on Tuesday, October 08, 2019 at 10:30 AM at the Trinity Lutheran Church of Cherokee with the Rev. Jonathan R. Riggert officiating. A private family burial will be held at the Holstein Cemetery of Holstein. There will be no visitation.
Phyllis Elaine Hammer, eldest daughter of Hattie (Andresen) and Theodore Bergmann, was born November 14, 1932 in Ida County near Holstein, Iowa. She was baptized in December of 1932 at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Holstein, Iowa and confirmed her faith on April 14, 1946.
She attended grade school in Ida County rural schools and graduated from Holstein High School in 1950 as valedictorian.
On April 12, 1951, Phyllis married Alvin Hammer at St. Paul Lutheran Church, Holstein. To this union two daughters, Lois and Lori were born. Phyllis and Alvin were blessed to have been able to celebrate 68 anniversaries together.
After her graduation from high school, Phyllis began her employment years at the office of Warren Curtis, CPA, Holstein. While her husband was serving in the U.S. Navy she was employed at Clyde Powell, CPA in San Diego and at the Naval Training Center in Illinois. In 1966, she began 17 years of employment as office manager at Bye and Bye, Inc. of Holstein. In 1983, she began her marketing career with Blue Cross of Sioux City and Des Moines. She took early retirement when it was offered, but remained an active agent for Blue Cross until 2011. In 1994, she and her husband opened the bed and breakfast. She was a Shaklee director and coordinator since 1990.
Phyllis had many loves and interests in her life. She taught Sunday School at St. Paul Lutheran Church for over 25 years. She served on the Ministry in Daily Life synod committee and also chaired the Evangelism committee at her church for several years. Family gatherings meant so much to her and her love of cooking for these events will be remembered by her grandchildren. Together with her husband, she enjoyed watching their children and then their grandchildren, in all their sports events, not missing a single one for any of them. Sharing her flower gardens and Shaklee with family and friends was a joy of her life. She enjoyed flower gardening, reading, phone calls from family, and she took an avid interest in the couple’s horses, appreciating the joy they brought to her husband. She was a member of the VFW Auxiliary.
Phyllis had the gift of hospitality. She took pride in her home her husband built and the door was always open to family, friends and the B & B guests. She loved to plan menus and the food for many gatherings held in their home.
Grateful for having shared her life are her husband, Alvin; two daughters, Lois Conover of Ames, and Lori (Frank) Forneris of Holstein; seven grandchildren, Jenni Dieguez of Omaha, Nebraska, Tim (Monica) Roepke of New York City, New York, Kevin (Lilia) Roepke of Guadalajara, Mexico, Katie (Ronnie) Merrill of Tampa, Florida, Wendy (Brad) Weber of Mankato, Minnesota, Andrew (Melissa) Butcher of Holstein and Ben (Brianna) Butcher of Holstein; two step-grandchildren, Katie and Dominick Forneris; and 12 great-grandchildren, Kamryn, Ethan, Kelby, Beau, Drew, Luke, Reese, Zaria, Charlie, Becky, Garrett and Annie; two godchildren, Dan Friedrichsen and Donna Reineke. She is also survived by two sisters and their husbands, Shirley (Richard) Friedrichsen of Holstein and Ruth (Gary) Dorman of Omaha, Nebraska; brother-in-law Dean (Karen) Hammer of Ida Grove, IA; and several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents and two sisters, Marlene Carol and Betty; sister-in-law Vesta Fey; and three brothers-in-law, Earl, Donald and Frank Fey.
Phyllis had a heart full of love for all and the door to her home was as open as her heart. Life without music, cookbooks, flower gardens and the Lord in her heart would be no life at all.
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