In Memory of Norma E. Auen

Norma E.  Auen
Norma E. Auen
Born: May 4, 1929
Died: November 2, 2020
Age: 91
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Norma E. Auen
May 4, 1929 - November 2, 2020
From: Ida Grove, IA

Norma E. Auen, age 91, of Ida Grove, Iowa, passed away on Monday, November 2, 2020, at the Odebolt Specialty Care Center of Odebolt, Iowa.

A Private Family Graveside Service will be held on Saturday, November 7, 2020, at the Ida Grove Cemetery of Ida Grove, Iowa. Pastor Luann Benge will officiate. The Christensen-Van Houten Funeral Home of Ida Grove, Iowa, is in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online at Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, masks are encouraged and social distancing rules apply.

Norma Elaine (Kinzer) Auen, the youngest daughter of John and Florence (Shearer) Kinzer, was born May 4, 1929, at her parents’ farm in Hayes Township south of Ida Grove, Iowa. Norma attended nearby Hayes Country School and graduated from Ida Grove High School with the class of 1947. 

Norma worked at the Pioneer Record office for a time. On March 15, 1951, she married Mearl “Jack” Auen of Ida Grove. The couple was blessed with one child, Mary, in 1954. Jack passed away suddenly on February 6, 1957 and had been working for Midwest Industries at the time. After Mary started school, Norma worked for Howard Penney, the town’s photographer. In the 1970s and 80s, she could be found behind the meat counter at John’s Grocery Store. For a time, Norma wrote a column for the local paper on historical items of interest from the newspaper archives, compiling these into a book at the time of the sesquicentennial.

Norma enjoyed gardening, both vegetables and flowers. She was especially fond of tending to her orchids. Norma had other pastimes including making things, scrapbooking, taking piano and accordion lessons, and caring for her cats. She traveled with the bank’s senior travel club to places like Ashfall in Nebraska, the Glenn Miller Festival in Clarinda, and following her friends in the Melodiers band. Norma also liked knitting and crocheting. Many relatives received knitted afghans for wedding presents. More recently, crocheted blankets were donated to the women’s shelter in Sioux City, Iowa.

Left to cherish her memory include her daughter Mary Auen of Dubuque, IA; brothers-in-law Ivan (Darlene) Auen of Odebolt, IA, Herb Auen of Sac City, IA and Wally Auen of Denison, IA; cousin Susan Streck of Ida Grove, IA; numerous nieces, nephews, extended family and friends. 

She was preceded in death by her husband Mearl “Jack” Auen; her parents John and Florence Kinzer; and sister Mildred (Herbert) Pearson.


Private Family Graveside Service
Saturday, November 7, 2020
Ida Grove Cemetery
Ida Grove, Iowa


Pastor Luann Benge


Recorded Selections
"Amazing Grace"
"The Old Rugged Cross"
"How Great Thou Art"


Ida Grove Cemetery
Ida Grove, Iowa


Tuesday, November 17, 2020 at 2:33 PM
“Norma was always the historian of Ida County. I remember how carefully she read the bound volumes of the Ida County Pioneer Record and how she treasured those historic records. She was among friends who helped me with my physical move to Le Mars around Labor Day of 1995. I always knew the history of Ida was in safe keeping with Norma. I also appreciated hearing about her fondness for cats. It seems my last face-to-face meeting with her was when she attended the reception for Justice Bruce Snell Jr. at the Ida Grove Library in August 2019, but I always heard from her at Christmas. . God bless the soul of Ida County's historian. -- Judy Bowman”
- Judy Bowman
Monday, November 9, 2020 at 1:59 PM
“I have known Norma for years... but after reading her obituary I was sure surprised to see that Herb and Wally Auen were her brothers... I remember them when I was very young from my Dad, Henry Schau and Uncle Tony Schau's stock car days. If I remember right, Wally was the stock car driver and I pbly have a picture in Moms things. Love the memories. ”
Monday, November 9, 2020 at 1:59 PM
“Remembering Norma working at the grocery store with my mom. I enjoyed running into her in our community and listening to what she was up to. She was an interesting gardener and very good at it. Bless you, Mary, as you miss and mourn your mom's passing. ”
- Jackie Brinkman Hoffman
Friday, November 6, 2020 at 10:56 AM
“I remember Norma from when I was employed at City Hall. Such a sweet lady!!! RIP Norma”
- Wylene Redenius
Tuesday, November 3, 2020 at 10:05 AM
“Norma was our next door neighbor for many years. She loved working in her garden and planting flowers and never turned away a stray cat. She was very independent and liked to do for herself but the last couple of years it was getting more and more difficult to do that and many times she would call on us to help her which we gladly did. She isn't struggling anymore. RIP Norma, you will be missed.”
- Reynold & Vicki McLead
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