Iola Metha Barts-Merritt, 93, passed away on March 29, 2019, at Hildebrand Care Center in Canon City, Colo., with family by her side.
Iola was born on May 20, 1925, to Armin and Emma (Kropelin) Barts in Athens. Prior to graduating, she lived on her parents farm in rural Wisconsin.
Iola married Kenneth Richard Merritt on Sept. 4, 1944, in Ellenville, N.Y. She graduated from Rusk Grade School and Colby High School in Colby. She was a lifetime-nationwide member of the VFW. Prior to marriage, Iola worked at Milcor Steel as a spot welder, at Briggs & Stratton inspecting airplane magnetos for the U.S. government, and she worked at the U.S. Government Ordinance Plant inspecting 75 caliber machine gun bullets. While married to Kenneth, she was an excellent homemaker raising seven children.
Iola is survived by one sister, Erma Denzin of Laramie, Wyo.; one sister-in-law, Arlene Barts of Abbotsford; three daughters: Donna Bostwick of Canon City, Colo., Judy Hoover of Pueblo West, Colo., and Peggy Borchers of Penrose, Colo.; four sons: Dennis (Sherry) of Maywood, Neb., Wayne (Thelma) of Redcliff, Western Australia, Gary (Debra) of Kearney, Neb., and Bruce (Noreen) of Cambridge, Neb; 25 grandchildren; 43 great-grandchildren; five great-great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; sisters: Marcella as an infant and Lila (Rudy)Thieme of Jefferson; a brother, Raymond (Arlene) Barts of Abbotsford; granddaughter, Mistelle Merritt; and a grandson, Daniel Smith.
Iola had a special love for her family and thoroughly enjoyed spending time with each and every one of them. She was the best wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and great-great-grandmother ever. She will be truly missed.
Memorial services and inurnment for her final resting place along side her husband Kenneth, at Ft. McPherson National Cemetery in Nebraska, will take place at a later date. Arrangements entrusted to Harwood Cremation & Funeral Services. Online condolences at Harwoodfunerals.com.