Helen Stewart of Maquoketa passed away on February 5, 2020. A memorial service will be held February 17 at Maquoketa UCC at 11am. Burial will be in the National Cemetery in Keokuk, Iowa at a later date.
Mary Helen Merriam Stewart was born on April 22, 1919 in Keokuk, Iowa to Bernard W. and Mary Lulu (Arnold) Merriam. She graduated from Keokuk High School in 1936 and Iowa State in 1941 with a B.S. degree in chemistry. She was employed by Seagram and Son in Louisville, Kentucky until 1946, during which time she earned an M.A. degree in biochemistry from Indiana University.
On June 12, 1948 in the rose garden of the Iowa State campus, she married William Warren Stewart. Upon moving to Maquoketa in 1960, Helen became an active volunteer. One of her cherished projects was the establishment of the local Meals on Wheels program. Bill and Helen served in the Peace Corps in Costa Rica and through VOCA in Ivory Coast and Bulgaria.
Over the years she was an active member of the FFA Alumni, Maquoketa UCC, Friends of Jackson County Conservation, the Jackson County Historical Society, GFWC Maquoketa Tuesday Club, Chapter BX of the P.E.O. Sisterhood, Friends of the Maquoketa Library, the Jackson County Zoning Board, and the Lawrence Van Hook chapter of the DAR. She retained a life membership in lota Sigma Pi, an honor society for Women in Chemistry, and Sigma Delta Epsilon, graduate women in Science.
She is survived by her children, J. Andrew (Fayette) Stewart of Ellicott City, Maryland, Richard W. Stewart of Cedar Rapids, Mary (Richard) Hayward of Maquoketa and Janet Burke of Lost Nation; her sister, Anne Wischmeier of Burlington, Iowa; ten grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren.
She is preceded in death by her parents, her husband Bill in 1997, grandson Robert Stewart, son-in-law Dennis Burke, and her brother Robert Merriam.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to either the Dolly Parton Imagination Library, the Maquoketa FFA Ag Learning Center, or your favored charity. The family appreciates the support of the Clover Ridge staff and Hospice of Jackson County.
Online Condolences may be left for the family at www.laheys.com.
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