Janice Mae Bruhn
September 30, 1940 — August 31, 2021
Funeral services for Janice Bruhn were held on Sept. 8, 2021, at 10:30 a.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Fenton with Reverend Mark Resner officiating. Burial was in the St. Luke’s Lutheran Cemetery in Fairville.
Janice Mae Bruhn was born on Sept. 30, 1940, at rural Livermore. She was the sixth child of seven born to Leo W. and Esther F. (Hauck) Wood. She was accepted as a child of God through Holy Baptism at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Livermore and confirmed in her Christian instruction at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Whittemore after her family moved to a farm just north of Whittemore. She attended St. Paul’s Lutheran School and graduated from Whittemore High School in 1958.
After high school Janice worked at the Whittemore Telephone Co. for a short while and then for Buchanan Abstract Co. in Algona. Janice married William G. “Bill” Bruhn on Sept. 3, 1961, at St. Paul’s in Whittemore and they moved to Fenton shortly after marriage. While raising a family with Bill in Fenton she worked briefly with the Fenton Telephone Co. and as church secretary at St. John’s Lutheran Church for 11 years. She also worked with Bill in support of the family business, Bruhn Builders Lumber Co., throughout its entire 32 years.
Janice had a quiet passion for servitude and volunteering for her church and the local community. She held various offices including President of the local LWML and Ladies Aid chapters and served as Emmetsburg Zone LWML Secretary. She loved attending District and International LWML Conventions and volunteering to teach Sunday school and VBS. She cherished the fellowship shared through the St. John’s Ladies Aid activities and rarely was there a silent auction she wasn’t helping with. She was a longtime member and officeholder of the Fenton Club of the ’70’s chapter of the Iowa Federation of Women’s Clubs. She served the community as a member of the Fenton Development Board and Community Club. Year after year, more than 30 years actually, she could be found at the local election site serving as a poll worker.
She enjoyed time spent with close friends and family on fishing trips, church outings, bus tours, many years of card-playing with both their 500 and Pinochle card groups and Saturday night dinner outings with friends.
As much as anything she was a loving mother and wife to her family and could always be seen supporting her children at every concert, play, musical, sporting event, church program and school activity they had. And over the years, there were many. Her love for family and friends will be greatly missed.
Janice was diagnosed with early-onset dementia over five years ago and struggled to accept the many changes and impact it was having on her life. She was supported by many local family, friends and neighbors during her last couple years in Fenton before needing to reside in assisted living in Algona. She fought bravely with courage through more challenges than we will probably ever understand. She passed away at the Algona Manor Care Center on Aug. 31.
Left to cherish her memory are her daughter, Carolyn (Brett) Carlson; son, Galen Bruhn, daughter-in-law, Jennifer Smyser; five grandchildren, Ross Carlson, Collin (Beatrice) Carlson, Mallory Bruhn, Alex (Sarah) Reimers and Trisha Reimers. Sisters, Kathryn Ernst, Erma Ohnemus, brother, Warren (Ann) Wood; sister-in-law, Ruth (Paul) Dietrich and many nieces and nephews.
Janice was preceded in death by her parents, Leo and Esther; husband Bill; son, Brant and son, Justin (stillborn). Brother, William and wife Marilyn Wood; brother, Duane and wife Velma Wood; brother-in-law, Wayne Ohnemus; brother-in-law, Carroll Ernst; sister, Donna and husband Evert Broesder; and sister-in-law Alice and husband, Richard Hinken.
Arrangements were handled by Oakcrest Funeral Services of Algona. Condolences may be left at www.oakcrestfuneralservices.com.