Annabelle (“Ann”) Morris died surrounded by loved ones at Serenity House Hospice in Oskaloosa on March 30, 2023, at age 94.
She was born in 1928, grew up in Guthrie Center, and graduated from Guthrie Center High School, where she played basketball and made the all-state team in 1946. She graduated from the University of Iowa in 1950 with a degree in Art Education. She taught Art in Humboldt and Emmetsburg, Iowa before taking an art teaching job with the Oskaloosa Community Schools. On November 4, 1956, Ann married Keith Morris at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Guthrie Center.
Ann’s lifelong passions were fueled by her artistic energy–she was always creating and encouraging others to create. She was particularly accomplished in drawing and painting. Her delightful paintings of Iowa scenes adorn walls far and wide. After taking early retirement from teaching to raise her family, she served three terms on the Oskaloosa School Board in the 1970’s and ‘80’s and worked part-time for the family furniture business until the mid-1990’s. She loved getting together with her many aunts, uncles and cousins in Guthrie County; Boulder, CO, and elsewhere. Ann enjoyed playing in several bridge clubs with many great friends. She was an active member of Saint Mary’s Catholic Church. She was a member and past president of Oskaloosa P.E.O. Chapter IO, a member of League of Women Voters, and a volunteer for local political campaigns. She was active in the local arts community and helped organize Oskaloosa’s annual Art on the Square event for many years.
Ann was a voracious reader and relished attending concerts and visiting museums at every opportunity. She loved to travel within the US and to Australia and Europe. She was a faithful St. Louis Cardinal baseball fan and a loyal Hawkeye supporter. She loved to shop and had a keen eye for fashion. Her biggest weakness, she willingly admitted, was chocolate.
Ann was preceded in death by her parents, Edward “Paul” and Gertrude “Louise” Arganbright, and by her husband, Keith. She is survived by her children Jean (John Cline) of Ceres, VA; David of Oskaloosa; and Polly Mattison (Kent) of Cedar Rapids. She is also survived by step-grandchildren Tyler Mattison of Cedar Rapids, and Claire Spakowski (Bill) of Chicago; and step-great-grandchildren, Vance Mattison and Liam Spakowski. In recent years, Ann carried with grace, determination and good cheer the burden of late-onset Alzheimer’s. She was fortunate to live in her own home with the support of family and friends, and especially dear friend Erma Johnson, who brought much fun to her days.
A memorial Mass and celebration of Ann’s life will be held at Saint Mary’s Catholic Church in Oskaloosa at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, May 9, 2023. Following the services, a luncheon will be held in the Saint Mary’s Parish Center. Ann’s ashes will be buried at Bluff Creek Cemetery in Eddyville. Memorial contributions may be made to the MHP Hospice Serenity House of Oskaloosa or the Oskaloosa Public Library. Langkamp Funeral Chapel & Crematory has been entrusted with her final arrangements.