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Arlene Wright

Arlene A. Wright, 88, from Anthon, Iowa, passed away on Sunday, April 30, 2017 at the Willow Dale Wellness Village of Battle Creek, Iowa.

A funeral Mass was held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, May 4, 2017, at the St. Joseph Catholic Church of Anthon, Iowa. Father Dan Greving  officiated. Committal services followed in the Mt. St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery of Anthon, Iowa.  The Armstrong – Van Houten Funeral Home of Anthon, Iowa has been in charge of the funeral arrangements. Online condolences may be sent to

Arlene was born January 18, 1929 in New Providence, Iowa, the daughter of Frank and Tressa Lawler.

Arlene was a star player on the 1946 New Providence High School girls basketball team that was the runner-up in the Iowa High School State Basketball Tournament.

Arlene was united in marriage to Eugene Wright February 10, 1948, at the St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Eldora, Iowa. After their marriage, they farmed a few years in New Providence. Then they took the plunge and moved to Anthon, Iowa to start a new life.

Arlene and Gene raised cattle, hogs and many acres of crops. Arlene hauled corn, cattle and seed corn to the field, made lunches for all the helpers, and whatever else she was called to do.

She was a leader of the Anthon Anthonettes 4-H Club, where her children were active members. She served on the chapter of the Catholic Daughters of America at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Anthon, Iowa for many years.

She and Gene loved to play bridge and were members of a bridge club in Anthon. She also loved to play golf with her friends at the Willow Vale golf club in Mapleton, Iowa. She was known for entertaining guests. Many meals and desserts were enjoyed by family and friends at the Wright household.

During retirement, she spent many hours watching her grandchildren’s events. Events could include sports, concerts or school plays and she was always there in the very front row. Besides her faith in God, her family was most important to her.

Arlene’s last seven years of her life were spent at Willow Dale Wellness Village in Battle Creek, Iowa. The staff and residents became like family to her. She will be deeply missed.

Survivors include her brother, Dick and Mary Lou Lawler of Eldora; three daughters: Carma and Jon Manns of Lake Charles, Louisiana; Debra and Stan Todd of Cushing, Iowa; and Sandra and Bill Ortner of Danbury, Iowa; 13 grandchildren: Skye and Jon Larson, Brad & Brady Wright, Paul (Stephanie) Manns, Jeff (Rebecca) Manns and Whitney Manns, Travis (Tara) Todd, Ethan (Megan) Todd, Ashley (Jeff) Diediker, Emily (Austin) Willer, Steve (Jillian) Ortner, Lisa Ortner and fiancé David Mapes, and  Carrie (Steven) Dibelka; 14 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband Eugene; her sons: Anthony (in infancy), Keith and Robert Wright; a grandson, Nathan Todd;  brothers Lewis Lawler, Raymond Lawler and Verle Lawler; and sisters Lucille Dakins, Frances Schafer, Mid Walton and Marilyn Harvey.

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