Ialee Marie (Grathwohl) Sikkink, age 90, of Rochester, died on Thursday, Nov. 28, 2019, at Samaritan Bethany Care Center.
Ialee was born on Dec. 9, 1928, in Iowa City, Iowa, the oldest of seven children of Walter and Minnie (Roth) Grathwohl. When she was 2, the family moved to southern Minnesota and farmed near Oakland, Rose Creek and Grand Meadow. Ialee graduated from Grand Meadow High School in 1947 and the Kahler School of Nursing in Rochester in 1950. She worked as a registered nurse for 17 years at Rochester Methodist Hospital, the Austin Medical Center, and the Preston Nursing Home.
On Dec. 19, 1953, Ialee married Duane "Bud" Sikkink in Grand Meadow. They lived in the Spring Valley area for 12 years, then moved to Wykoff in 1965 where they farmed and raised their three children: Ann, Judy, and Kevin. In 1991, they retired from farming and moved to Rochester, where both Ialee and Bud volunteered at the Methodist Hospital gift shop. As Bud's health failed, Ialee was his faithful caregiver for many months.
Ialee was a member of the Rochester Methodist Hospital Auxiliary and received a service award for more than 4,000 hours of volunteer service. She is a past member of the Wykoff United Methodist Church and the Church of the Savior in Rochester, where she taught Sunday School and held various church leadership positions.
Ialee loved to bake, crochet, and listen to country music. She was an avid reader, especially her Bible, and loved to attend Bible study groups. Her favorite pastime, though, was spending time with her family, especially her six grandchildren.
Ialee is survived by her children, Ann (Brian) Johnson of Austin, Judith (Dave) Wenzel of White Bear Lake, Minn., and Kevin (Lisa) Sikkink of Rochester; grandchildren Kim (Tom) Christner, Katie Johnson, Erin (James) West, Alexi Wenzel, Abby Wenzel, and Aaron Timm; sister Jean (Steve) Smith; brothers Robert (Shirley) Grathwohl and Warren (Sheila) Grathwohl; sister-in-law Bernice Grathwohl; and many nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband Bud, her parents, brothers Gale and Richard Grathwohl, and sister Elaine Mariner.
The funeral for Ialee M. Sikkink will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3, at the Macken Funeral Home, River Park Chapel, with Rev. Mark Rader officiating. Private family burial will take place at a later date in Cherry Grove Cemetery in Cherry Grove. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service Tuesday at the funeral home.
Memorials are preferred to Samaritan Bethany Care Center, Seasons Hospice, or the charity of your choice.
The family would like to express our sincere gratitude to the staff at Samaritan Bethany Care Center and Seasons Hospice for their kindness and loving care of our mother and grandmother during the past several months.
Online condolences are welcome at www.mackenfuneralhome.com