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Kathryn Dull, 92, Marshalltown

Kathryn Dull, 92, of Marshalltown, passed away on the night of Thursday, December 14, at the Iowa River Hospice Home.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Monday, December 18, at the Elim Lutheran Church with Pastor Karen Cluts officiating. Visitation will be held from 3 to 5:00 p.m. Sunday at the Mitchell Family Funeral Home. Memorials may be directed to the family, Elim Lutheran Church or to Iowa River Hospice. For condolences, please visit or call 641-844-1234.

Kathryn May Wilkening was born May 31, 1925 in State Center, Iowa. She was the daughter of Chris H. Wilkening and Aleta E. (Pfantz) Wilkening. She was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul Lutheran Church in State Center, Iowa. She was raised on the family farm and proud of her German heritage. Kathryn graduated from State Center High School in 1943. After graduation, she entered into nurses training at Evangelical Deaconess Hospital in Marshalltown, Iowa. She graduated from nurses training in 1946. She worked several years as a Registered Nurse at the hospital in Marshalltown. The last 10 years of her career were spent at Iowa Veterans Home where she retired in 1991.

On September 16, 1951, Kathryn married John J. Dull at St. Paul Lutheran Church in State Center, Iowa. They had two children, Kevin and Kristine. John and Kate lived in and around the Marshalltown area throughout their married life. Kathryn worked hard all her life and instilled a strong work ethic into her children. She would regale her family with stories of life growing up on the farm, her years of nurses training and her stories of her work at the hospital. It was all these fascinating stories about babies being born that inspired her daughter to enter in nursing like her mother.

Kate loved to entertain family and friends on any occasion. She loved to keep in touch with relatives and her nursing friends. She took a special interest in genealogy and in her 50’s organized and ran the Clem and Elizabeth Eckhardt Pfantz family reunion for 37 years. She loved keeping up the family tree with names and birthdays of all the generations – until the family became too large to manage for one person. She especially enjoyed hosting pre-reunion parties in the 70’s and 80’s for out-of-state cousins that would come. Oh what fun and frivolity the family would have! Kate enjoyed fishing trips, camping, bluegrass and polka festivals and Big Band music of the 40’s and 50’s. She was fascinated with nature around her and loved gardening, canning, and working with flowers and shrubs. All of Kate’s friends would remark on her wonderful ability to recall events, dates, and clear memories of past events. She was also a phenomenal record keeper and documented every life event in journals and calendars. Kate was an active 62 year member of Elim Lutheran Church and of WELCA. She was also a member of the Evangelical Deaconess Hospital Alumni Association and would attend the spring banquet ever year.

Kathryn is survived by her daughter, Kristine McKibben of Albion, Iowa, daughter-in-law Kristine Gilchrist-Dull of Marshalltown; four grandchildren including, David McKibben, Albion, Matthew (Kelsey) McKibben, Marshalltown, Alex Dull, Austin, TX and Annie Dull, Eden Prairie, MN; great granddaughter, Holly McKibben and great grandson, Ashton McKibben coming in six weeks. Also her brother, Merle (Merie) Wilkening, Colo, Iowa, and sister-in-law, Marilynn Wilkening of Oshkosh, WI as well as many nieces, nephews, relatives and a host of friends.

Preceding her in death were her husband, John; son, Kevin; grandson, Austin Thomas, her parents; two brothers, Melvin and Eugene and son-in-law Richard McKibben.

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