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OBIT: Geraldine “Geri” Hess

This news story was published on April 4, 2021.
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Geraldine “Geri” Hess, 92, of Peoria, AZ, formerly of Clear Lake and Mason City, IA, died peacefully on Wednesday, March 24, 2021, at her home in Arizona.

Geri was born April 21, 1928, the daughter of Edwin and Catherine (Smith) Horsfield in Dubuque, IA. She married Donald Hess on November 23, 1950, in Placid, IA. She is preceded in death by husband Don, baby Mary, grandson, Andrew Gasaway, and siblings Ellie (Bob) Nicks and Thomas (Kay) Horsfield.

A graduate of Visitation Academy in Dubuque, Geri attended Clark College to be a nurse. After meeting Don, she switched to business and graduated from Bayless Business College. Geri and Don partnered in life and in business starting 20 companies including Hess Buttermilk Company, Hess & Company, Mason City Recycling, Mason City By-Products, Vi-Cor and A to Z Drying in Osage.

Geri was a farm girl who grew up thoroughly enjoying… “everything” – dancing to Big Band music with Don, karaoke, a good scotch, cards and people, especially her grandkids. She brightened so many lives with her welcoming home and personality. She listened like no other. Her generous heart and love will carry on with so many who remember her contagious smile, her beautiful Irish eyes, and her “sparkle”.

Geri is survived by her children: Joan (Mike) Gasaway of Mason City, Dona (Gene) Maki of Minneapolis, Ruth (David) Liner of Peoria, AZ, Dean (Suzanne) Hess of Clear Lake, Jane (Mike Kroll) Hess of St Paul, MN and John (Jennifer) Hess of Golden, CO; brother, Eddie (Rosie) Horsfield; grandchildren: Matt, Leah, Gina, Lindsey, Morgan, Madeline, Ryan, Elizabeth, Jillian “Jilli”, Marin, Sophia, Liam, Alex, Haley and many great grandchildren and extended family.

In Geri’s honor donations are suggested to Jilli’s group home, the Phoenix Residence: Phoenix Residence, Inc.; C/O Close the Gap; 330 Marie Avenue East; West St. Paul, MN 55118. Charity Tax ID: 41-6170035.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, July 17, 2021, at St Patrick’s Church in Clear Lake. Burial will be at Memorial Park Cemetery in Mason City.

Visitation will be held on Friday, July 16, 2021, at Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel in Clear Lake. Service times will be announced at a later date.

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