Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News
Kalona, Iowa

Newspaper Article Archive of
The Kalona News

October 18, 2018 Kathleen Agnes Knebel Pogge
Article Pages -- as published on the The Kalona News website.

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1923 - 2018

Kathleen Agnes Knebel Pogge, 95, of Iowa City, formerly of Riverside, passed away on Friday, Sept. 7, 2018, at the Iowa Veterans Home in Marshalltown. Memorial Mass for Kathy will be held at 3 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018, at the Iowa Veterans Home. Graveside services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 26, 2018, at the Mt. Olivet Cemetery in Riverside.

Kathy was born on Aug. 21, 1923, the youngest of eight daughters born to Joseph and Catherine (Bauer) Knebel. She graduated from St. Mary’s High School in Riverside and attended one year of college at Iowa City Commercial Business School.

Shortly thereafter, she enlisted in the U.S. Navy, as women could not enlist until age 20. After enlistment, she was assigned to basic training in Oklahoma and eventually stationed in Norfolk, Va., where she worked in naval communications and intelligence, charting naval ships in the Pacific. One of her lifetime thrills was in 1945, after the war was over and the peace treaty was signed aboard the USS Missouri battleship, the USS Missouri was scheduled to dock in the port at Norfolk. Kathy was honored to be chosen to board one of the tugboats that escorted the ship into the harbor. This was one of the biggest thrills of her life -- along with her hot air balloon ride over Iowa City, which was her stated wish for her 80th birthday! She was truly an adventurous and spirited woman, especially for her time.

Another honor for Kathy was being awarded a Quilt of Valor in April 2017. These quilts are intended to be comforting and are a tangible gift of gratitude, thanking veterans for their service and also willingly sacrificing their lives for our freedom.

Our Mom was a stay-at-home mom until we grew more independent and then she started her career at People’s Trust and Savings Bank in Riverside. She thoroughly enjoyed working at the bank for the Kirchner family. When she retired in 1985 after 25 years, Don and Betty Kirchner gifted Mom and Dad with a retirement trip to Waikiki and Maui.

After her retirement, they moved to Iowa City, where they spent the majority of their latter years, eventually moving to the Iowa Veterans Home in Marshalltown in November 2015.

Mom was a superb self-taught cook and baker, and our memories of her most requested homemade dishes were fried chicken (in lard no less), potato salad, banana cream pie and chicken and noodles. And growing up, our birthdays were not complete without her ice cream cakes.

She could repair anything (and did) with her White sewing machine and also crocheted and embroidered intricate pictures that literally contained millions of stitches, worthy of framing and true works of art. We slept on pillowcases and dried dishes with “tea towels” showcasing her crossstitch skills.

An outdoor lover, she had an enormous vegetable garden and beautiful floral gardens, with orchids being her specialty. She passed that love of fresh food and flowers on to us. Exploring eastern Iowa on Sundays via car rides along with swimming and picnics at Lake Darling in the summer were weekly sources of family fun. She was also an avid lover of crossword and word search puzzles.

It’s difficult, if not impossible, to talk about Mom without talking about Dad, too. They were practically inseparable and were almost “one.” They were married for 68 years when Dad passed and were the dynamic duo, still reaching for and holding hands until the end. They crisscrossed the USA via car and Mom was the map-reader and navigator. Although Mom used to laugh and tell us that she almost wore a hole in the floorboard where her imaginary brake pedal was located, they managed to do it all without a mishap, and through God’s good graces.

They traveled to many Cubs baseball games and would not miss a Cubs game nor an University of Iowa sporting event on TV, comfortably seated in their blue recliners. If there was a church supper in eastern Iowa they were there, plus frequent fall car trips to Wisconsin to the apple orchards.

Sunday was always Mass followed by lunch out -- they had a simple routine, which they loved. They were both true testaments to enjoying a simpler life and satisfaction with what you are given and also the fortitude to keep on going, no matter what. Her tough spirit—‘I can get through this’ mindset and ‘just do it and don’t take no’ stubbornness that got her through tough times is a trait we are particularly grateful for.

Mom lived a long, full life and will forever be remembered as a wonderful wife, mother, sister, grandmother and great-grandmother, whose memory will be cherished by all who knew and loved her.

So, Mom, rest easy now, and enjoy holding hands with Dad, chatting with your sisters and your Mom and Dad, and numerous loved ones. Our forever angel.

Kathy will be deeply missed by her children: Carol (Thom) Kirkpatrick of Hills, Barbara (Dan) Pence of Kailua, Oahu, Hawaii, and Nancy Kirkpatrick (Joel Simms) of North English; four grandchildren: Dan (Heather) Pence, Chris (Erin) Michel, Stacey (Chad) Huedepohl, and Levi (Lauren) Kirkpatrick; five great-grandchildren: Tailor Kai Pence, Luke and Chase Michel, and Lena and Vera Huedepohl; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Kathy was preceded in death by her parents; husband: Robert on Dec. 31, 2017; and seven sisters: Loretta (Shorty) Henning, Celeste (Peggy) Rose, Norma Knebel, Alberta (Bert) Hart, Viva Shradel, Dorothy (Doby) Todd and Charetta Knebel.

The family would like to thank the entire staff on 4 Malloy South and Ulery 7 at the Iowa Veterans Home for the compassionate attention and high quality care given to Kathy.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Fund c/o The University of Iowa Center for Advancement, 1 West Park Road, Iowa City, IA 52242.

Online condolences for the family may be sent to

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