Janet Viola (Nafe) Lindsay, 92, of Pontiac, Illinois, formerly of Cherokee and rural Washta, Iowa, died peacefully on Tuesday morning, March 16, 2021.
A Celebration of Life Service was held on Sunday, May 30th, at 2 p.m. at the Grand Meadow Heritage Barn, rural Washta, Iowa. Burial of the cremains will be in the Grand Meadow Cemetery. The Boothby Funeral Home in Cherokee, Iowa is assisting the family with the arrangements. Online condolences can be left at www.boothbyfuneral.com
She was born January 15, 1929, in Cherokee, Iowa, to Miles and Tena (Deming) Nafe. Janet attended Westmar College in LeMars, IA, graduating as an elementary teacher. She taught upper grades at Mission School in Velarde, NM, Redbird Christian School in Kentucky, and 4th grade in Early and Fort Dodge, IA, before meeting Marvin Lindsay.
Janet and Marvin were married at Meadow Star Church on October 6, 1956, and would go on to enjoy 54 years of marriage, farming, volunteering in their community, and raising their three children on a farm in rural Washta, IA. Upon retiring from farming, Janet and Marvin traveled the 49 contiguous United States delivering Winnebago motorhomes and taking time to see the sights and visit their children and grandchildren. Janet and Marvin lived out their last few years together in Cherokee, IA, and upon Marvin’s death in 2012, Janet spent the remainder of her life in Pontiac, IL, and Lexington, KY. She was able to attend her grandchildren’s sports games, concerts, art exhibits, and college classes. She cheered louder than everyone with her two-finger whistle and she made sure everyone around her knew who she was cheering for.
Janet was preceded in death by her husband, Marvin Lindsay; brothers Lloyd Nafe and Dale Nafe; and sister-in-law, Bernice Nafe.
She is survived by two sons and one daughter-in-law, Kevin James Lindsay (Becky) of Vine Grove, KY, and Grant Ward Lindsay of Lexington, KY; one daughter and son-in-law, Amy Kay Duffy (Mike) of Pontiac, IL; eight grandchildren, Sarah (Paul) Ragusa, Casey Lindsay, Alexa Duffy, Naomi Lindsay, Jacob Duffy, Noah Lindsay, and Faith Lindsay; and three greatgrandchildren, Lane, Wade, and Sadie Ragusa. She also leaves many other family members and friends who will sadly miss her.
Janet was someone who won’t be easily forgotten. Her love of flowers, butterflies, and the color purple will live on through the art she created that graces the walls of her friends and family’s home. She was an accomplished artist in watercolor and acrylic painting. A true artist, her imaginings graced not only paper, but barn boards, unfinished cedar slats, cement bunker silos, metal farm discs, dried mushrooms, and the bench that marks the Marvin and Janet Lindsay grave.
Never one to be bored, Janet always found unique ways to express herself. She performed in plays over the decades, even writing and directing a skit to celebrate her and Marvin’s 50th wedding anniversary – a smash hit for the Grand Meadow stage. She took home 1st place in the 1986 Iowa State Fair’s Husband Calling Contest. She whistled while she worked. And she graced the cover of more than one newspaper over the course of her life.
Her friends and family will remember her as the woman with the sixth sense for spotting hummingbirds, always on the hunt for their nest as the devoted “Foxy Grandma” who took great pride in her grandchildren (and grandson-in-law), attended the birth of each of her greatgrandchildren, and as the fashionista who was never without matching lipstick, nail polish, and accessories.
Her funeral service was held Friday, March 19, 2021 at 5:30 p.m. at Duffy-Baier-Snedecor Funeral Home in Pontiac.
Memorials may be made to the Pontiac Public Library, 211 E. Madison, Pontiac, IL 61764. While Janet was a lover of all plants and flowers, in lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to a charity of the donor’s choice.