Virginia Brahn, 97

Virginia Brahn, age 97 of Ionia, IA died Monday, January 13, 2020, at Colonial Manor of Elma.

Funeral Service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Monday, January 20, 2020, at Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home & Crematory -- Olson Chapel in Nashua with Rev. Russ Leeper celebrating the service.

Friends may greet the family from 3:00 - 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, January 19, 2020, at Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home & Crematory -- Olson Chapel in Nashua. Visitation continues an hour before the service on Monday at the funeral home.  Online condolences for the Brahn family may be left at hugebackfuneralhome.com

Virginia Brahn was born on Sept. 8, 1922, on the farm of her parents Lyle and Ester (Morse) Huffman west of Ionia.

She was the middle child of three and, like her brother and sister, she helped out on the farm and attended school in Ionia, before transferring to Charles City High School, where she graduated with the Class of 1941.

She joined the Civil Service and worked in a variety of clerical jobs during World War II and eventually was sent to Japan, where she met a handsome soldier from New Jersey named Nelson Brahn, and the two fell in love. When Nelson headed back to the United States, Virginia’s last words to him were “pick me up at the train station.”

Nelson did just that, and on July 10, 1947, Virginia and Nelson were married in Tom’s River, New Jersey, and the family eventually welcomed three sons — Dennis, Curtis, and Dexter.

The Brahns moved to Iowa in 1955 after Virginia’s brother passed away at a young age and Virginia’s father needed the couple to help on the farm.

After her sons were out of the house, she eventually took a job at Mohawk Cleaners in New Hampton, but her real love was her garden and selling her produce at the Farmers Market, which was her and Nelson’s “Florida money” for their winters in Port Charlotte. She knew all her customers — maybe not by name but certainly by what they bought. And if you didn’t know how quite to use those vegetables, Virginia would give you a recipe.

She was an excellent cook and an outstanding baker, and Virginia loved to gather with her friends for their card club in Charles City.

She also loved her grandchildren, always having cookies and candy for them. She played cards with them, and she made every visit with grandma an adventure. Take the time, she picked up the kids from the pool in Charles City and decided to take them to Hardee’s for ice cream. They told her she was going into the “drive-through” the wrong way, but with a twinkle in her eye, she pointed out that “if they want my money bad enough, they’ll take it.” But because she was ordering on the wrong side of the car, the poor Hardee’s employee thought she had said “five ice teas,” not “five ice creams.”

Virginia, like her husband Nelson, lived life to the fullest, and after 72 years of marriage, their deaths were separated by just eight days.

She will be missed — for her talking (“you couldn’t get a word in edgewise once she got going”) to her baking to her cooking and mostly for her zest for life, her family, and friends.

Virginia is survived by three sons, Dennis (Carol) Brahn of Ionia, IA, Curtis Brahn of Ionia, IA, and Dexter (Janice) Brahn of Ionia, IA; five grandchildren; ten great-grandchildren; one sister-in-law, Millie Brahn of New Jersey.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Nelson; one brother, Stanley (Eva) Brahn; one sister Thalia Huffman.

New Hampton Tribune

10 North Chestnut Ave
New Hampton, IA 50659
Phone: (641) 394-2111
Email: tribune@nhtrib.com

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