FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Margaret “Jeanne” Wilkens was born March 23, 1925, in Washington County, Iowa, the daughter of Alvin Evan and Hazel Alma (Engle) Strum died peacefully at home surrounded by family and pets in Flagstaff on March 25, 2017, at the age of 92.
She was educated at New Haven Country School and graduated from West Chester High School in 1943. She was never absent nor tardy while attending school, quite often walking three miles in all kinds of weather, and accompanied by her dad if it was really, really bad weather. She later graduated from AIC Business School, Davenport.
Jeanne married Henry “Hank” Wilkens on Oct. 8, 1955, at the Little Brown Church, in Nashua, Iowa.
She was employed by the City of Davenport for 18 years and retired from the Rock Island Arsenal in March 1993.
She enjoyed virtually all sports and participated in many. She enjoyed attending the sporting events of her son, then her grandchildren in later years.
Jeanne is a member of the Davenport-Bettendorf Women’s Bowling Association Hall of Fame and she served as a delegate to many state and national meetings. In 2009, she participated in her 50th WIBC/USBC National Bowling Tournament.
She was a former member of the Alpha Iota sorority, and the 600 Bowling Club. Most recently she was a member of the Ladies of the Moose, NARFE, AARP, National Auxiliary of Rainbow Division Veterans, CASI, Scott County Farm Bureau, Golden Tones Chorus, Quad-City Times Plus 60 Club and the Die-Hard Cubs Fan Club (since 1940), GO CUBS! She also served as a volunteer for Quad-City Meals on Wheels in several capacities.
Jeanne enjoyed traveling and visiting many cities during her bowling tournament travels. She did embroidery and counted cross-stitch projects, many of which are unfinished. She loved to bowl, play bingo, work crosswords and Sudoku puzzles, and play dominos with her club friends and grandchildren.
She loved animals, owning many throughout her lifetime, including her many farm pets. Her late husband, Hank, once said if a stray elephant came around, she would have it for a pet. She will join in death her beloved kitty, Sweetie, who will be waiting for her next to her beloved dog, Luka Marie next to her trusty pony, Toby.
She is survived by her son, Brian (Katy) Wilkens, of Flagstaff; step-son, Hal Wayne (Sally), of Arizona City; grandchildren, Joshua (Kristie) Francis, of Davenport, Ashley (Justin) Newkirk, of Gilbert, Arizona, Elizabeth Wilkens, of Shawnee, Kansas, and Taylor Wilkens, of Wayne, Michigan; step-grandchildren, Sandra (Joy) Lynch, of Davenport, Dale Wilkens, of Davenport and Vickie Wilkens. She has four great-grandchildren, Emmalee Winetraut, Kylah Francis, Benjamin Newkirk and Lilah Sue Briscoe. She is survived by her best friend and sister, Colleen Young, of Washington, Iowa; nieces Wendy (Paul) McCracken and Lori (Dale, fellow CUB Fan!) Sayer. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Hank; and many others too numerous to mention. May they all rest in peace.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Scott County Humane Society, Davenport; Second Chance Animal Shelter, Flagstaff; or Northern Arizona Healthcare Foundation (Flagstaff Medical Center Nursing Scholarship Fund). The family would like to extend special thanks to all of the staff of Flagstaff Medical Center who have each taken such great care of her during her time in Flagstaff. She really appreciated your thoughtfulness and your kindness more than you will ever know.
You always knew there would be a game on the TV when you visited her. So, in honor of Jeanne’s love of sports, the family requests that you wear a jersey of your favorite team to the visitation (baseball, football or basketball). You always knew ESPN would be on the TV when you visited her.
Visitation will be 4-7 p.m. Thursday, March 30, at Runge Mortuary, Davenport. Funeral services will be 10 a.m. Friday, April 1, at Runge Mortuary, with burial service to follow at Rock Island National Cemetery, Arsenal Island. Online condolences may be expressed at www.rungemortuary.com.