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Roberta Lucille McCoy Parish, 79, died peacefully while surrounded by family on August 26, 2019.
Roberta (“Bertie” to most) was born on March 19, 1940, near Bonaparte, Iowa, to Mark Boley McCoy and Pearl Olga Moore McCoy. She graduated from Keosauqua High School in 1957 and attended Northeast Missouri State University, Iowa State Teacher’s College (UNI), and graduated from Drake University with a degree in Elementary Education.
Bertie was preceded in death by her parents; her stepmother, Madeleine Manning Gilchrist McCoy; her brother David McCoy; stepsister Joyce Ann Gilchrist Jack; stepbrother James Gilchrist and niece Gina Jack.
She is survived by her husband of nearly 60 years, Don Lavern Parish of Colo, Iowa; daughter, Stephanie (Greg) West of Mount Vernon, Iowa, and her children, Sarah (John) Learned, Kate Bishop, Matthew and Andrew Heck; daughter Deanna Gray of Indianola, Iowa, and her children, Connor and Aric Humphrey; one great grandson, Callum Learned; four step-grandchildren, Ammie (Jeff) Trumpold; Zachary, Alyson, and Jessica West; and two step-great grandsons, James and Charlie Trumpold. Bertie was blessed to come from a large blended family of her own and is also survived by her brother Hugh (Rita) McCoy, her sister Barbara (Larry) Burkett, her stepbrother, Craig (Sue) Gilchrist and 26 nieces and nephews.
Bertie was a 3rd and 4th grade teacher for 10 years. Her organizational skills, along with her passion for antiques and collectibles, led her to pursue her next career as an antiques dealer. She leveraged her ongoing quest for “big bad bargains” and her entrepreneurial talent when she established Roberta’s Relics in Mount Vernon in the 1980s. She also was a flea market dealer and enthusiast, later selling from rented spaces in various antique shops in four states at the same time.
Bertie collected many things but favored her beloved buttons. More importantly, she collected friends. She never knew a stranger. She was strong in faith, applied the Golden Rule, and always lifted others in prayer.
A Celebration of Life will be held in Keosauqua, Iowa, on July 17, 2020, with burial at Harness Cemetery in Mount Sterling, Iowa. Immediately following, there will be a “Bertie Bash” where we hope to share many stories and laughter — and buttons.
Memorials can be directed to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in honor of close family friend Emily Reimer, via the link www.stjude.org/donate at any time. Cards can be sent in care of Don Parish, PO Box 214, Colo, IA 50056.
“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” – Dr. Seuss
Aaron J. Hill
School is getting ready to start again, football practice gearing up, and we all seem to be trying to get one last bit of our summer into a weekend getaway. At IAGenWeb we are busy getting each of our projects updated and ready for visitors. Our new Leadership Team officers have been installed and we are looking forward to our new year.
We invite you to come visit us and and go through our group of adoptable counties: Adams, Calhoun, Carroll, Cerro Gordo, Emmet, Floyd, Jackson, Jones, Keokuk, Lyon, Mahaska, Mitchell, Montgomery, Pottawattamie, Poweshiek, Sac and Tama, Each of these wonderful counties would very much like to have 'you' as their new coordinator. To find out more about becoming a county coordinator please contact our Welcome Hostess <welcome_to_iagenweb(a)iagenweb.org> and let them know which county you are interested in . They will be happy to guide you through the process.
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