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JoAnn Groth

1935 - 2021

    JoAnn Groth, age 86, of Climbing Hill passed away on Monday, January 4, 2021, at Pioneer Valley Living & Rehab of Sergeant Bluff.
    A Private Family Memorial Service was held at the Armstrong-Van Houten Funeral Home of Mapleton. Msgr. Mark Duchaine officiated. A Celebration of Life and burial will be held at a later date.
    The Armstrong - Van Houten Funeral Homes of Anthon and Mapleton was in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online
    JoAnn Groth, the daughter of George H. and Catherine L. (Bosch) Finzen, was born on January 4, 1935, in Woodbury County. She grew up in Anthon and as a youth spent countless hours at the gravel pit searching for toads. JoAnn attended St. Joseph Catholic School in Anthon till 8th grade and then Anthon High School, graduating with the class of 1953. JoAnn worked at various jobs after high school including the local hardware store and the mink farm.
    On February 19, 1955, JoAnn was united in marriage to Lyle E. Groth at St. Joseph Catholic Church of Anthon. The couple was blessed with three sons: Daniel, Patrick and Michael. The family made their home on the farm near Climbing Hill where Lyle was a grain and livestock farmer and JoAnn was a homemaker.
    JoAnn enjoyed spending time outside on the farm tending to her flower beds. She liked taking the boys to the creek to fish as well as teaching them to care for their pets. JoAnn enjoyed cooking meals and taking them to the guys when they were working in the fields. She also enjoyed going uptown for coffee with her friends. JoAnn treasured time with her family. She will be dearly missed by those who knew and loved her.
    Left to cherish her memory include her sons Daniel Groth of Onawa, Patrick (Debra) Groth of Harlan, and Michael (Amy) Groth of South Sioux City; grandchildren Alex, Austin, Nathan and Emily; great-granddaughter Ivy; sister Suzanne Petersen of Marcus; numerous nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
    She was preceded in death by her parents George and Catherine Finzen; husband Lyle Groth; brothers George (Bernice) Finzen, William "Bill" (Delores "Duffy") Finzen, James (Helen) Finzen and Donald (Ona) Finzen; sisters Mary Jane (Howard) Santeler, Frances McNamara, Ruth (Bing) Hall and Patsy (Robert) Turner; and brother-in-law Glenn "Pete" Petersen.

Cleo E. Seuntjens

1940 - 2021

    Cleo E. Seuntjens, age 80, of Danbury (formerly of Omaha) passed away on Friday, January 8, 2021, at Maple Heights Nursing Home in Mapleton.
    A Funeral Mass of Christian Burial was held at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 13, 2021, with visitation held prior to mass at St. Mary's Catholic Church of Danbury. Father Richard D. Ball officiated. Committal Services followed in the Danbury Catholic Cemetery of Danbury.
    The Armstrong - Van Houten Funeral Home of Mapleton was in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online at
    Cleo E. Seuntjens was born on May 12, 1940, in Danbury to Siebert and Clara (Ortner) Seuntjens. There were three brothers and two sisters. He attended St. Mary's Catholic School through the 8th grade and then graduated from Danbury Catholic High School with the class of 1958. Cleo furthered his education at Loras College in Dubuque, acquiring his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education and Philosophy with a secondary teacher's certificate in 1962.
    He studied to be a priest at Mount St. Bernard Seminary in Dubuque and was ordained for the Diocese of Sioux City in 1966 by Bishop Joseph M. Mueller. His studies concluded with a Master of Arts Degree in Theology.
    Beginning in the summer of 1962, Cleo pursued his Master of Arts Degree in Secondary Administration, Secondary Guidance and Counseling, all from Creighton University in Omaha. As a result of his master's programs, he earned a high school principal certificate and counseling certificate, completing all in 1969.
    Cleo worked for 26 years in high schools and parishes throughout northwest Iowa, serving at Emmetsburg Catholic High School and Assumption Catholic Church, Carroll Kuemper High School (two assignments), Halbur St. Augustine Catholic Church, Dedham St. Joseph Catholic Church, Sioux City Bishop Heelan Catholic High School, Bancroft St. John Catholic High School and St. John the Baptist Parish, Granville Spaulding Catholic High School and St. Joseph Parish, and Maple River St. Francis Catholic Church. His duties involved teaching, counseling, and 15 of these years were served as a secondary principal. In 1992, he took up a new residence in Omaha and held various employment positions, including some high school teaching and driving school bus for Omaha Public Schools. After receiving official training, Cleo worked as a Financial Consultant for 15 years for a prominent financial services company.
    Cleo married Jeanice D. Hyland and the couple made their home in Omaha. Jeanice passed away in January of 2009.
    Cleo is survived by his sister Rita (Venteicher) Dirksen of Danbury; sister-in-law Marilyn Seuntjens of Mapleton; brother-in-law Gary Kelley of Sioux City; step-daughter Kaitlyn M. Hyland-Reed of Aurora, CO; and numerous nieces and nephews.
    He is preceded in death by his parents Siebert and Clara Seuntjens; wife Jeanice Seuntjens; siblings: Clair, Ronald, Rev. LeRoy Seuntjens, and Helen Kelley.

Reba E. Downey

1938 - 2020

    Reba Elaine Downey age 82, of Anthon passed away at her home on December 23, 2020, surrounded by her loved ones.
    A Private Family Funeral Service was held on Monday, December 28, 2020, at the United Church of Christ of Oto. Pastor Karen Handke officiated. Committal Services followed in the Correctionville Cemetery of Correctionville.
    The Armstrong - Van Houten Funeral Home of Anthon was in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online
    She was born on April 1, 1938, in Sioux City to Gilbert and Mildred (Livermore) Downing. She was raised in Oto and received her education there.
    On February 23, 1955, Reba was united in marriage to LaWayne Downey in Oto. To this union three children were born: Raleigh, Linda and Roger.
    Reba loved to craft. She traveled and offered her creations for sale at many craft fairs, flea markets, vendor fairs, and swap meets, making many friends along the way. Reba was an avid doll collector and liked antiquing. She was known for her talents as a baker and cake decorator. You may have even ordered or eaten one of her beautiful, delicious cakes over the years. Reba cherished and treasured spending time with her family, especially with her children and grandchildren.
    Survivors include her husband of 65 years, LaWayne Downey of Anthon; son Roger Downey of Logan; daughter-in-law Kathy Downey of Lawton; grandchildren: Corey Roggatz, Crystal (Kurt) Lawler and daughter Grace, Elicia Downey and daughter Suri, Cassi Downey and Jacob Downey; brother Marvin (Kathy) Downing of Oto; brothers-in-law Larry (Lori) Downey of Correctionville, and Ardell "Butch" Banta of Salix; numerous nieces, nephews, as well as extended family and friends.
    Reba was preceded in death by her parents Gilbert and Mildred Downing; parents-in-law Fred and Ruth Downey; two brothers in infancy; son Raleigh Downey (2011); daughter Linda Roggatz (2012); son-in-law Ron Roggatz; sister-in-law Diane Banta; and two great grandchildren James and Hannah Lawler.

Janet K. Behrendsen

1943 - 2020

    Janet K. Behrendsen, age 77, of Council Bluffs passed away on December 2, 2020, at Jennie Edmundson Hospital.
    Jan was born on February 5, 1943, in Battle Creek to the late Herbert and Lela (Otto) Schrunk. She graduated from Danbury High School in 1961 and attended MBT Business College in Sioux City. Jan married Ronald Behrendsen on April 20, 1963 in Danbury. They were blessed with two children, Jeffrey and Sheila. Jan was a sales clerk at JC Penney for 28 years and was an active member of St. Patrick Catholic Church.
    In addition to her parents, Jan was preceded in death by 5 siblings, Jeanne, Rosemary, Diane, Allan and Frank.
    Jan is survived by her husband of 57 years, Ron Behrendsen of Council Bluffs; son Jeff (Sandra) Behrendsen of Council Bluffs; daughter Sheila (Mike) Honaker of Marion; granddaughters Alissa Huff, Kelsy Becerril and Adi Honaker; 5 great-grandchildren Jehieli Becerril, Adrianna Becerril, Miyah Becerril, Theo Jones and Bishop Matlock; sisters Rachael Belt, Sally Gassner, Susan (Dan) Taylor, and Laura (Dave) Danay; brothers Paul (Carol) Schrunk and George (Jane) Schrunk; and many nieces and nephews.