Dec. 22, 1919 — April 12, 2017
A funeral Mass was held at 1:30 p.m., at St. Cecelia’s Catholic Church, Algona, on Monday, April 17, 2017. A visitation started at noon.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made in Annabelle’s name to the Cedar Rapids Sisters of Mercy Retirement at Sacred Heart Convent, 1125 Prairie Drive NE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 52402.
Annabelle Elizabeth Semon Courtney was born on Dec. 22, 1919, in Whittemore, to Alfred Henry Semon and Esther Margaret Fandel Semon. Annabelle was the second of four daughters in an industrious and hardworking family. She had unbounded energy and throughout his life, her dad often referred to her as “Hurry Up Annie”.
Annabelle grew up in Whittemore. She attended St. Michael’s Academy and graduated in 1937. As a young adult, Belle worked as a waitress in cafes in Algona and Fort Dodge and in retail at Kresensky Department Store in Algona before marrying Loren Courtney on June 15, 1948. They had three children – Patrick in 1949, and twins Daniel and Dawn in 1951. While raising her young family, Belle was an Avon lady.
In 1959 Loren and Annabelle moved to Clarion, Iowa where they partnered with LaVern and Jo Baldus to buy the Wright County Implement business. Belle took school pictures for Mueller’s Studio for many years and later was their bookkeeper. Annabelle was active in St. John’s Parish, St. Mary’s Parish Circle, the Catholic Daughters of America, working on many a turkey dinner and various parish events. She served on the Parish Council, the School Board, and taught CCD classes.
By a vote of her family, Annabelle was an award-winning homemaker in the truest sense of that word. She welcomed everyone she met into her life and into her home. She relished feeding people.
She was a lover of poetry and literature, often memorizing her favorites. She loved to share them with family, friends, and little kids she met. She and Loren were avid walkers and ballroom dancers. She was spunky. Terrified of water her whole life, she conquered that fear by taking swimming lessons when she turned 50.
After selling the implement business and retiring, Annabelle and Loren spent the winters from 1983-1997 in Tucson, Ariz., where they joined a hiking club and regularly enjoyed 7-8 hour hikes through the Tucson Basin and surrounding mountain ranges. The Courtney’s sold their home in Clarion and moved back to Algona in 1984 to enjoy condo living, which allowed them to travel more. They were involved members of St. Cecelia’s Parish. In 2012, they moved from Algona to an assisted living facility in Cedar Rapids, Iowa where their son Pat and wife Sally live.
Loren passed away on Nov. 16, 2016. Annabelle fell and broke her hip on March 30 and passed away April 12, 2017, at the Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy in Cedar Rapids.
Those left to celebrate her life are her sisters Marie Semon (Rocky)Welp and Vera Semon (Pat) Bradley as well as Loren’s brother Wilbur (Janelle) Courtney. Eternally grateful to have shared in her life are her children: Pat (Sally) Courtney and their children Justin (Catherine) Courtney of Seattle, Sarah (Justin) Kissida and son Jackson also of Seattle; her son Dan (Jeanne) Courtney of Mason City and their sons Patrick (Jackie) Courtney and son Ryan of Brooklyn, N.Y. and Jack (Melissa) Courtney and daughters Rosie and Ruby of Cedar Rapids; her daughter Dawn (John) McCormick of La Grange Park, Ill. and their sons Michael of Chicago and Conor (fiancée Mackenzie Miller) of Fort Collins, Colo.; her nieces, nephews, their families and friends.
She is preceded in death by her husband, her parents, her sister Rosemary Semon (Menno) Limberg, a baby brother who died in infancy and sister-in-law Rose Courtney; brother-in-law, Bill (Nelda) Finn and sister-in-law, Betty (Arnie) Arndorfer.
Oakcrest Funeral Services, www.oakcrestfuneralservices.com