|Margaret Mathilda Oltmann Bonjour
February 5, 1928 – December 8, 2016
|Margaret M. Bonjour, 88, of Olin, died on December 8, 2016 at the Jones Regional Medical Center in Anamosa, Iowa following a fall caused by Parkinson’s disease and subsequent brief illness. Visitation will be held from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. on December 11, 2016 at the Lahey Funeral Home in Olin with funeral services following at 3:00 p.m. and interment at Antioch Cemetery in rural Anamosa.
Margaret Mathilda Oltmann was born on February 5, 1928 in Anamosa, the third of five children born to William J. and Matie (Dirks) Oltmann, Jr. She was baptized March 28, 1928 and was confirmed with her brother Roger on April 6, 1941, both at Wayne Zion Lutheran Church in rural Monticello, Iowa.
Margaret grew up on the farm in Cass Township and attended Cass Township School No. 6 (Frog Hollow) through 8th grade. She did not immediately attend high school so that she could help her mother take care of her new-born twin siblings, Fay and May, for the next four years, and also help on the farm. Margaret began high school in 1946 when the school buses started running in the country and graduated in three year in 1949 from Anamosa High School. She had many relatives including sixty-nine first cousins.
Margaret worked for the Maquoketa Valley Rural Electric Company in Anamosa as a receptionist, billing and crediting clerk, and machine operator from 1949 until January 1953. During this time, she was a pitcher for the Blue Cap Softball team. She then attended the Electronic Radio-Television Institute in Omaha, Nebraska for three months where she completed training in Airline Communications and received her diploma on March 27, 1953. Margaret returned to Anamosa and worked at Westphal’s Grocery for a few months before working as a telephone operator at Northwestern Bell for 2 ½ years. She then worked at Collins Radio in Anamosa and Cedar Rapids for two years. During this decade, she was active in the Anamosa Bowling League.
Margaret married Leo Bonjour on August 8, 1959 at the Evangelical United Brethren Church (later know as St. Paul’s United Methodist Church) in Olin by Rev. Lloyd Dutro. They farmed together in the Newport Mills area for twenty-four years. She served as a 4-H leader for the Jackson Wise Owls and the Jones County 4-H Committee, and at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church she served on several committees, was active in the Ladies Aid, was the Children’s Sunday School Superintendent, and was the Administrative Board secretary and treasurer on the Wapsi Manor Board.
Margaret and Leo retired from farming in 1983 and remained on the farm until moving into Olin in 1999. After retirement, she spent much of her time making quilts and cross-stitching, playing cards and board games, and doing word searches, crossword puzzles, and Sudoku. Her quilts are treasured by her children and grandchildren.
Margaret and Leo joined the Morley United Methodist Church in June 2012. They were honored as the Grand Marshalls in the Olin Jamboree parade in June 2015.
She is survived by her son Edmond (Rose) Bonjour of Stillwater, Oklahoma and their children Sophie of Carbondale, Illinois and Ean of Stillwater; her daughter Renee (Mike) Bennett and their children Collin, Blake, and Brent of Little Rock, Arkansas; and her brother Fay Oltmann of Anamosa, plus many other family and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her brother Roger in 1981, and her sisters Nadine Blythe in 1984 and May Clark in 2005.
Submitted by: Janet A. Brandt
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