Madeline Arens
1923 - 2020
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Madeline Arens

Madeline Arens, 96, of Amana, formerly of Belle Plaine, passed away peacefully on June 17, 2020 at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City after a short illness.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held 1 p.m. Monday, July 6, 2020 at St. Micheal's Catholic Church, Belle Plaine celebrated by Fr. Dennis Conway and assisted by Deacon Joe Behounek. With visitation from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. prior to the service at Hrabak-Neuhaus Funeral Home in Belle Plaine. Burial will be at Oak Hill Cemetery, Belle Plaine immediately after the Mass. There will be no luncheon. Due to the current Covid-19 situation, masks and social distancing are required at the visitation and Mass.

Madeline Flora (De Neve) Arens was born on a farm west of Victor, Iowa on December 4, 1923, to Edward De Neve and Cordula (Hudders) De Neve. She walked to country school near Victor until the seventh grade, spent eighth grade at Sacred Heart School in Moline, Illinois, then returned to and graduated from St. John's Catholic School in Victor in 1941. Madeline married Rene Henry Arens on August 30, 1941 at St. Bridget's Catholic Church in Victor. They lived in Moline, Illinois until the spring of 1942 when they moved to a farm southeast of Belle Plaine, where they farmed and raised a family. In 1996 she and Rene moved to Belle Plaine, where they enjoyed many memorable family gatherings. In 2017 Madeline moved to Colonial Manor in Amana, Iowa.

Madeline devoted herself to her faith and her family, welcomed many nieces, nephews, cousins, and grandchildren to the farm, and loved traveling with Rene. Highlights of her travels were seeing her father's birthplace in St. Laureins, Belgium, her mother's childhood home in Maldegem, Belgium, and visiting Germany with her children and their spouses. She also enjoyed playing cards, reading, knitting and crocheting, gardening, dancing, shopping, going to the casino, pizza, sending greeting cards, and just visiting over a cup of coffee.

She is survived by her children, Edward of Palo, James (Cindy) of Amana and Belle Plaine, Joyce (Steve) Russell of Evansdale, Jean (Thomas) Sippy of Swisher and Janet (Larry) Balvin of Chelsea; grandchildren, Paula (Mark) Swenson, Angie (Derek) Walton, Dan Arens, Julie Bashara, Matthew Russell, Colleen Baker (Mike) Hallemann, Patrick (Morgana), Rachel (Chad Ward) and Grace (Wyatt Brenneman) Sippy, Sarah (Roy) Silhanek and Brian (Danielle) Balvin; great-grandchildren, Jacob and Andrew Swenson, Zachary and Luke Walton, Taylor, Tyler and Nathan Arens, Ava and Lily Bashara, Christian and Lucienne LaJeuness, Rachel, Wyatt and Caleb Silhanek, Kaylee and Henry Balvin and Oscar Brenneman.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Rene in 2005; siblings, Raymond, Herman, Frederick, Alice Waline, Margaret Berscheid and Helen Burns; two grandchildren, Scott and Penny Arens and granddaughter-in-law, Dena Arens.

Many thanks to the staff at Colonial Manor, Amana, for the loving care they provided to Madeline during her stay there. Also, a special thanks to the nurses and staff on 4E and 4W at the UIHC for their wonderful care.

To view the visitation, mass and burial via livestream, please visit Hrabak-Neuhaus Funeral Service website, at the bottom of the main page click on the Facebook link. Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at on the website as well,

Memorials may be directed to the family.

Madeline's best advice was "Take things as they come, and then do the best you can." She, her hugs, and her smile will be dearly missed.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in the Iowa City Press-Citizen from Jun. 26 to Jul. 8, 2020.
11:00 - 12:30 PM
Hrabak-Neuhaus Funeral Home
Mass of Christian Burial
01:00 PM
St. Micheal's Catholic Church
Oak Hill Cemetery
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