Belva E. Wilson, age 82, of Cresco, Iowa passed peacefully into the arms of our Lord on Friday, August 24, at Regional Health Services of Howard County in Cresco.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Notre Dame Catholic Church on Tuesday, August 28 at 11:00 a.m with visitation one hour prior with Father Dennis Cain officiating. Visitation will be on Monday, August 27 from 4-7 p.m at the church with Hindt-Hudek Funeral Home in charge of arrangements. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery.
Belva Elizabeth Ernst was born on October 29, 1935, in rural Ridgeway to Otto and Florence (Libbey) Ernst. She attended country school as a young girl with her family then moved to Cresco where she attended and graduated from Cresco High School. Following high school, she worked as the secretary for the superintendent of the Howard-Winneshiek CSD. She married the love of her life, Gerald (Jerry) Wilson on July 14, 1956, at Assumption Catholic Church in Cresco and they were blessed with four amazing children. While living on the family farm, Belva was a partner in farming with her husband, prepped and showed purebred Chester White hogs at many state fairs and shows all over the US, and was an avid gardener --- canning, freezing and pickling for her growing family.
Belva had a great appreciation for the fine arts and, often including her somewhat obliging husband, attended many concerts, musicals and art shows. She was a former member of the Cresco Elm Street Singers and while wintering in Arizona, a member of the View Point Classic Chorale. Belva was also humbly proud of her fifty years of music ministry involvement playing organ/piano/singing for Notre Dame Catholic Church and Assumption Catholic Church. She was a member of Cimota, the Hospital Auxiliary, and the Cresco Country Club.
Belva was an excellent cook and entertainer, known for her whole wheat dinner rolls, cinnamon twists and rhubarb pie. She was an accomplished seamstress and quilter, an intense bridge and cagey euchre card player, a semi-competitive golfer, a Twins baseball fan and a daily crossword puzzle fiend. She also loved dancing with her husband, was a bird watching enthusiast, a voracious novel reader, and enjoyed a good vodka gimlet. But, perhaps she loved her family holiday celebrations and get-togethers most of all and attended a plethora of her grandchildren's sporting events, dance recitals, concerts, graduations and weddings throughout the years.
Belva is survived by her husband of 62 years, Gerald; their four children Sheila Laubenthal-Black (Jim), Algona, IA, Dana (Mitzi) Wilson of Cumming, GA, Bart (Julie) Wilson of Cresco, Iowa and Todd (Lori) Wilson of Algona, IA; eight grandchildren, USAF Major Shannon Laubenthal (fiancé, Josh Boyles) of Cedar Rapids, IA, Kendra (Jeff)Bell of Elkhorn, NE, Shane Wilson of Atlanta, GA, Hannah Wilson, Cumming, GA, Andrea (Chas) Malek of Cresco, IA, Ryan Wilson, Ames, IA, Rebecca Wilson, Brookings, SD, and Alex Wilson, Algona, IA. Three step-grandchildren, Byron Black, Rochester, MN, Rachael Black, Edenborough, Scotland and Elizabeth Black, St. Paul, MN. Two great grandchildren, Wallace and Winnie Bell of Elkhorn, NE and a sister, Betty Schoeberl, Cedar Falls, IA.
She also leaves a very special Hospice nurse, Megan Bruess and the rest of the Hospice of Howard County team as well as a dedicated group of professionals at Regional Health Services of Howard County.
Belva was preceded in death by her parents, Florence and Otto Ernst, Richard Laubenthal, son-in-law, Brandon Laubenthal, grandson, and Robert Ernst, brother.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donations made to Hospice of Howard County, National Pancreatic Cancer Association, Cresco Public Library, or Regional Health Services of Howard County.