Lovilia happenings: mark your calendars today!

April 6th, 2016

I will wait.  Go get your calendar and a pen. Got it?  Here are the coming events:

April 11, Monday Lovilia Fall Festival Planning meeting at the Lovilia Comm. Building at 5:30 p.m.  New people interested in helping are welcome.

April 11, Monday Lovilia Community Betterment Meeting at the Lovilia Comm. Building at 6:30 p.m. New people interested in helping are welcome.

April 13, Wednesday, United Methodist Church is serving a Chicken noodle supper with sides and desserts at the Lovilia Comm. Building from 5-7 p.m.  Free will offering to eat in and a $5 cost per carry out dinner.

April 16, Saturday, Craft night at the Lovilia Comm. Building at 6-8 p.m. We will be making May day gift jars.  Cost is $10 per person includes all materials and snacks.  For adults and you can learn more or sign up to attend on Facebook.  Type in the search line “Lovilia craft night”.  Jessica Mansur is our instructor.  All profits support the Lovilia Fall Festival.  Come join the fun!

April 23, Saturday, Can and Bottle Redemption Collection. All proceeds support the Lovilia Fall Festival.  If you want early pickup call 891-7837 or 891-7855.  Volunteers will meet at the fire station at 9:45 a.m.  Then they will go door to door to collect or people can drop off the cans & bottles at the fire station between 10-12 .

April 25, Monday, Blood drive at the Lovilia Comm. Building from 3-6:30 p.m.  New donors are welcome and can just drop in to sign up during this time.  The blood bank says only 10 out of 100 people donate.  We can always use new donors.  You must be 16 years old or older.  16 and 17 year olds need parental permission.

April 28,Thursday, is the annual Worker Memorial Day.  This day stop and say a prayer for any worker who has died on the job.  Then make an effort at your workplace or in lobbying the legislature to make sure work places follow the best safety procedures to protect all workers.

May 7, Saturday, is the annual city wide Yard Sales in Lovilia. Lovilia Community Betterment sponsors this and puts an ad in the Albia Newspaper for the sale and distributes flyers to let people know.  Have fun and set up a sale in your yard and spread the word to come on out and shop. Most sales are open 8-12 a.m. but each person can set their own sales hours.

June 8, Wednesday, Stuffed Baked Potatoes with all the Fixings at the Lovilia Comm. Building for supper.  This is hosted by Lovilia Betterment Committee and all earnings will go towards the community buildings insurance premium and building maintenance.

New Residents Coming Soon

A lady who grew up here, Ellen Hollinrake, and her husband are planning to move to Lovilia when they are retired.  They have purchased the empty lot between the Lundstroms and the Spaurs on North E Avenue (main street).  At some point they will place a home there and we look forward to welcoming them to town.





Beverly Ann Sofranko Dies

April 1st, 2016

Beverly Ann Sofranko, age 85, died March 30, 2016 at home surrounded by her loving family.  Beverly was the daughter of Hayden and Eva (Anderson) Jones of Albia, Iowa and was born to them on November 3, 1930.  She graduated salutatorian of her  high school class in Albia in 1948.  Following graduation, she attended Mercy College of Nursing where she earned her Registered Nurse diploma in 1951.

Beverly married Gerald Sofranko on July 19, 1952 at Visitation Catholic Church in Des Moines, Iowa.  They moved to Columbus, Iowa where Gerald was stationed in the Air Force and were living there when their first child, Steven, was born.

In 1954 they returned to Iowa and moved to Lovilia.  The family was blessed with seven more children.  Beverly was a registered nurse at Monroe County Hospital for 37 years and retired from there in 1992.  Through the years she was a source of comfort and support to many friends and neighbors and patients under her care.

Beverly was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Albia, Iowa and St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Lovilia, Iowa.

She was a devoted mother, loved traveling and camping with the family, spending winters in Arizona for 13 years,  sewing, and shopping for gifts for others.

Beverly is survived by her husband of 64 years, Gerald.  Also survived by seven children:  Denise (Mark Rosacker) Sofranko, DVM; Janette (Gene Duchardt); Don; Elizabeth; Cecilia; John (Maria); and James (Monica).  She also has two grandchildren, William and Ava Sofranko.  She also leaves one sister, Betty (Paul) Clark and many nieces and nephews.  Her son, Steven, and her parents preceded her in death.

Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 a.m., Monday, April 4, 2016 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Albia with father Mike Volkmer C.P.P.S. officiating, and Deacon Edwin Kamerick assisting.  Burial will follow services in St. Peter’s Cemetery , Lovilia.

Visitation will begin at Sinnott’s Funeral Home, Albia at 1 p.m. , Sunday April 3rd.  There will be a Rosary at 4 p.m.  Family will be present 5-8 p.m.. Chrisitan wake at 6 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home.

Memorials may be for either:  St. Peter’s Cemetery, Lovilia; Monroe County Hospital Foundation; or HCI Hospice.

May she rest in peace.

Robert Frank Durbala Dies

March 17th, 2016

Robert was the first child of Frank Alexander and Margaret Catherine (Bins) Durbala.  He grew up on the family farm near Lovilia and graduated from Lovilia schools.

April 19, 1950 he married Suzanne Alma Grundman in Newton. They had three daughters and one son.  He worked over 39 years at Maytag in Newton where he retired in 1985.  He was an electrician and after retirement built a country home on ten acres which he enjoyed caring for.

He died Tuesday, March 14, 2016 at age 87 at Skiff Memorial Hospital in Newton.

Surviving are his wife, son Michael Paul(Sandy) Durbala of Hills; daughter Anne Marie Bonawits of Naples, Florida; daughter Mary Lynn Durbala of Baxter, and daughter Catherine Sue (Ken) Curell of Boone.

He also leaves 11 grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, and two sisters: Jean Hollinrake of Weller and Patricia Baldus of Ames.

Preceding him in death were his parents, sister Margaret Fisher, brother Thomas and brother Marion, and one great-grandchild, Tanner Titus.

Funeral mass will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m., Saturday, March 19th at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Newton, Iowa.  Visitation with family will be 5-7 p.m. Friday at the Pence-Reese Funeral Home in Newton.

Memorials may be directed to the Sacred Heart Catholic Church of Newton.

May he rest in peace.

Evelyn Lucille Dunkin Dies

March 13th, 2016

Evelyn died in Knoxville at the age of 92 at Westridge Speciality Care on Saturday, March 5, 2016.

Her parents, Andy and Bertha (Warren) Henderson welcomed her birth November 21, 1923.  She attended school in Lovilia and graduated with the high school class of 1941.  She raised her family on the farm and worked at Water’s Grocery Store in Lovilia.  Later she managed the Pine Knolls Country Club Kitchen in Knoxville and still later worked at Bingley Sell Barn Cafe.

She enjoyed gardening and going to casinos.  She was very proud of her five generations.

Evelyn is survived by her children, Beverly Hugen of Lovilia, Wendell (Linda) Dunkin of Des Moines, Katherine Thomas of Bussey, Lowell Dunkin of Des Moines. Also surviving is Lee Thompson of Knoxville who was her significant other for 44 years.  Also three generations of grandchildren survive her.  Also, her siblings:  Maxine Chance of Albia, Paul (Jean) Henderson of Ottumwa, and Joe (Joan) Henderson of Newton survive.

Preceding her in death were her parents, and brothers, Bob and Ern Henderson.

Celebration of Life Services were held March 9, 2016 at the Lovilia United Methodist Church and visitation was for an hour before the services.

Memorials may be directed to the family.  Services entrusted with Sinnott Funeral Home, Gilbert Chapel of Lovilia.


Jane Ann Ballalatak Dies

March 2nd, 2016

Jane was born on February 27, 1943 to Michael Edwin and Juanita Louise Chamberlain Ballalatak in Albia, Iowa.  She died on her birthday, February 27, 2016.

Jane attended and graduated from Lovilia schools with the class of 1961.  She worked many years at Monroe Plastics and later at VA Hospital in Knoxville until retirement.  She made her home in Lovilia.

Her enjoyments were sewing, traveling, and making quilts.  She was a member of St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Lovilia.

Jane Ann is survived by her siblings: Dennis (Karen) Ballalatak of Albia, Jeanette (Thomas) Evans of Oskaloosa, Jim (Deb) Ballalatak of rural Albia, and Donna (Don) Zoutte of Knoxville.  She was preceded in death by her parents and two brothers, Kevin and Jerry.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m., Thursday, March 3, 2016 at Sinnott Funeral Gilbert Chapel in Lovilia with pastor Rick Smith officiating.  Burial will follow services in OakView Cemetery in Albia.  A funeral luncheon will be served following burial at Sinnott Funeral Home in Albia.

Visitation will be on Wednesday, March 2, 2016, opening to the public at 1:00 p.m. and family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. Wednesday evening at Sinnott Funeral Home Gilbert Chapel in Lovilia.

Memorials may be directed to the Lovilia Community Building.

May she rest in peace.

Lovilia Fall Festival Date Is Set: September 10, 2016, Saturday

January 12th, 2016

Festival committee met and the date is set.  Please mark your new 2016 calendar and save the date to join us.

It will be Saturday, September 10.  More details as the plans are made will appear here on under the water tower.

Newly elected Festival committee chairman is Sadie Dykstra.  She invites anyone who wants to help support the festival entertainment, food, and advertising costs, etc. to send donations to:  Sadie Dykstra, P. O. 142, Lovilia, Iowa 50150.

If you missed getting a Lovilia shirt last year. They will be available again this year by order only. Watch this blog and info. will be there about ordering.

If you want to be in the lighted night parade, tell Sadie or email your entry plans to the email site for this blog.

Save the date.  We hope to see you there for the fun and visiting with old friends and neighbors.  And we want to thank Sadie and her committee of volunteers who work long hours to bring you this good time.


Louise Sebben Golec McCoy dies today, January 5, 2016

January 6th, 2016

Louise, age 92, died today at Oskaloosa Care enter in Oskaloosa, Iowa.

She was born April 22, 1923 in the Rex 4 coal mining camp in Monroe County, Iowa to Santo and Luigia(Lucaora) Sebben.  Louise graduated from Lovilia High School with the class of 1940.  She was married in March 1960 to Edwin Golec and shared 29 years together before he passed away in 1989.

Later she married Hugh Ben McCoy on October 1, 1995 and they shared 20 years together before he died in 2015.

Louise lived and worked as a secretary in Chicago for 4o years.  Then she moved to Lovilia, Iowa where she was a member of St. Peter’s Catholic Church and of the Altar and Rosary Society there.

Louise enjoyed music and dancing.  She liked children, visiting with her neighbors, and family.  People would say ,” She had a heart of gold”.

Louise is survived by her step-children and their families:  Robert McCoy, James McCoy, and S. Michael McCoy.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her husbands, her sisters:  Antonette DeMarchi and Emma Tenerowicz, and her five brothers:  John, Angelo, Geno, Mario, and Joseph Sebben.

No visitation is planned.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 2 p.m., Friday, January 8, 2016 at St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Lovilia.  Burial will follow services at St. Peter’s Cemetery in Lovilia.

A memorial has been established to St. Peter’s Cemetery in Lovilia.

Condolences may be left for the family at www.tharpfh.com.

May she rest in peace.


Bob Crumley passed away Saturday, December 19, 2015

December 22nd, 2015

Robert “Bob” S. Crumley, 74, of Allison, Iowa, died Saturday, December 19,2015 at Waverly Health Center in Waverly, Iowa.

He was born October 29, 1941 in Ottumwa, Iowa to Donald V. and Geraldine (Carr) Crumley.  Bob attended Lovilia High School and then graduated from William Penn college with a degree in music.  He served his country in the United States Army during Vietnam and was a member of the 74th Army Band.

He was united in marriage to Margaret Flahive on June 3, 1967 in Lovilia, Iowa.

He was a social worker his entire professional life and was promoted to Director of Butler County Human Services.  Later he worked as the Butler County Relief Director until he retired.

Bob was a member of the American Legion and the St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Greene, Iowa.  He enjoyed spending time with his family and grandchildren.  His passion was music, especially Dixieland Jazz music.  He was a member of many bands:  The Saints Dixieland Band in Cedar Falls, the Red Sneakers Dixieland Jazz Band in Des Moines, the Raiders of the Lost Art Dixieland Jazz Band in Mason City, and the Jazz Coalition Big Band in Mason City, the Allison Five Jazz Band and many other bands throughout the state.

He is survived by his wife Margaret of Allison, son Tim (Terri) of Marion, son Bill (Jenn) of Tiffin and grandchildren:  Ian, Ella, and Reese Crumley.  Also, surviving is his sister, Margaret (Raymond) Vittetoe of Ottumwa.

He is preceded in death by his parents and brother John William.

Memorials may be directed to the Cedar Basin Jazz Festival in Cedar Falls or to the Lakeside Jazz Festival in Clear Lake.

Visitation will be Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2015 from 4-7 p.m. at Sietsema-Vogel Funeral Home, 308 Birch St., Allison.  Funeral services will be Wed., Dec. 23, 2015  at 10:30 a.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 105 N. Main St., Greene, Iowa.  Lunch following services at the Am. Vets. Hall, Allison.

Burial will be at St. Peter’s Cemetery, Lovilia, Iowa on Saturday, December 26, 2015 at 11:30 a.m.

May he rest in peace.

Helen Baker Died Dec.12th

December 15th, 2015

Helen Rosezetta Baker, age 84, of Lovilia, died Saturday, December 12, 2015 under hospice care at Monroe County Hospital in Albia, Iowa.

She was born April 12, 1931 to Otto and Beulah (Adams) Corrick in Grinnell, Iowa.  Helen went to school in Keswick and graduated with the class of 1949. She then attended AIB for one year and went to work for Look Magazine in Des Moines.  Helen and Merrill LeRoy Baker were married June 19,1954 at Trinity United Methodist church in Albia.  They shared 59 years of marriage before Merrill passed away.  They were blessed with five children:  Kevin, Jolinda, Kim, Jeff, and Brian.

After marriage she was a homemaker and worked ten years for Chamberlains in Albia.  She enjoyed sports and watching her children and grandchildren in their sports.

Helen was an award winning basketball player and set the state scoring record for high school basketball.  As a freshman she played as a guard and as a sophomore she scored 101 points in a game in 25 minutes.  She was referred to as “Corky” and “the Keswick Flash”. After high school she played basketball for Look Magazine and at AIB where she was named All American.  In 1978 Helen was inducted into the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union Hall of Fame.

Surviving are her five children:  Kevin (Jane Sinnott) Baker of Albia, Jolinda (Ed) Wilson of Lovilia, Kim (Steve) Haluska of Decorah, Jeff (Jamie)Baker of Ankeny, and Brian Baker of Cedar Falls, and a special nephew, Greg (Holly) Shelford of Knoxville.   She is also survived by ten grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren, her brother Richard of Adel, and five sister-in-laws:  Betty Baker of Des Moines, Hazel Baker of Albia, Norma Barnes of Lovilia, Gayle Hastings of Lovilia, and Lola (Bob) Ivins of Albia.

Preceding her in death were her husband, her parents,  brother Gerald, sister Thelma, sister Joyce, and granddaughter Brooklyn Kamerick.

Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, December 16, 2015 at Trinity United Methodist Church in Albia.  A private family burial will be in Woodlawn Cemetery in Lovilia at a later date.

Visitation will be 12-8 pm. Tuesday, December 15, 2015 at Tharp Funeral Home in Albia. Helen’s family will be present from 4:30-8 p.m.

Memorials may be made to Welcome Home Soldier or to the Southeast Iowa Kidney Foundation.  May she rest in peace.

St. Peter’s Pot Luck

After mass Sunday, Dec. 13th, parishioners were entertained at Father Pat Lumsden’s rectory with a Christmas potluck.  Twenty four people enjoyed the meal and fellowship and each was given a pretty Hallmark ornament by Gerald and Bev Sofranko.

United Methodist Party and Special Services

Wednesday, Dec.16th will be a K-8th grade Christmas party from 3:30pm-5 p.m.  Food and activities for children who attend.

Candlelight services will be Christmas Eve at 6:30 p.m. for everyone.

Santa Claus makes a stop in Lovilia

Santa is making a stop on Christmas eve at 6 p.m. at the Lovilia Community Building.  All children are invited to stop by and visit with Santa. HOHOHO.

Blood Donor Drive in Lovilia Dec. 28th

Donors may give blood Dec. 28th, Monday from 3-6:30 p.m. at the Lovilia Community Building.  New donors are welcome. Just stop in with a picture ID and they will help you learn to be a donor.

January 11, Monday, Festival planning and Community Planning

5 p.m. Sadie Dykstra will chair the first meeting of the year to plan the Lovilia Fall Festival.  Everyone is welcome to come help with the plans and committee work.

Following this meeting will be a Community Betterment meeting to make some long range plans and goals for Lovilia town improvements.  Again, everyone is welcome to come with ideas and suggestions for making Lovilia a better place to live.  This meeting will be a brain storming meeting. So if you have ideas big or small to improve the town bring them to the meeting. If you cannot attend but have an idea, please call Susan Beary at 946-7952.


Eldora June Ryan dies Dec. 4, 2015

December 8th, 2015

Eldora, age 87, passed away Friday, Dec. 4, 2015 at her home in Lovilia.  She was born November 12, 1928 to Theodore and Helen (Kment) Klug in Stanton, Nebraska. After going to school in Stanton, she married Thomas Wayne Ryan in Norfolk, Nebraska on August 15, 1946.  They shared 60 years together before he died on August 30, 2006.  They were blessed with five daughters:  Diane, Sharon, Sandra, Debra, and Pam.

In 1956 the family moved to Albia where they managed the movie theater.  Later she worked at the Continental Overall Factory in Knoxville.  Then Eldora and Tom ran the tire/bait shop in Lovilia.  After that she worked at Chamberlains in Albia.

She was a member of Albia Eagle’s Club, enjoyed making crafts, and enjoyed most of all time spent with family.

She is survived by daughters: Diane Love of Ankeny, Sharon Cunningham of Albia, Debra (Dan) Felton of Albia, and Pam Owens of Lovilia as well as several grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Also surviving is her sister, Lorraine Klawonn of Madison, Nebraska and a son-in-law, Leon Chamberlain of Lovilia.

Eldora was preceded in death by her parents, Theodore and Helen; her husband, Thomas; a daughter, Sandra Chamberlain; and two son-in-laws, John Love and Keith Cunningham.

As was Eldora’s wishes her body was donated to the University of Iowa for Academic Studies.  A private family memorial service will be held at a later date.

Online condolences may be left for the family at www.tharpfh.com.  May she rest in peace.

New Christmas Decorations Adorn E Avenue (Main Street)

Lovilia city government applied and received a grant to purchase the decorations. The city parks committee studied the options available and chose the bright red banners which say “Welcome to Lovilia” and large “led” lit snowflakes.  The cost was about $2700.  The electrical hookups on the city poles were  probably 30 years old and were no longer workable.  The  city then agreed to pay the $145 per box so each snowflake could be lit up.  Each snowflake cost $400 and each banner cost $123.  This is mentioned just to make you aware that these beauties come at great cost and we should appreciate the effort made to make it possible.  We should all thank the city for this beauty brought to us for the holiday season.

A fund has been started to add more decorations if enough money is donated, currently $125 has been given to the fund from Lovilia residents.  Thanks to those of you who gave to the fund.