May 27, 2022

Marianne Lippold


Marianne Lippold, 79, of Osceola, IA, passed away during the evening of February 22, 2022 at her home, in the country, surrounded by loved ones. Her hand was held and she was prayed over and sung to as she drew her last breaths. Her husband of 55 years was by her side when she passed.

Marianne was born on January 7, 1943 to Fern Wharem (of Fort Dodge, IA) in Iowa City, IA. In that same year, her parents, Mary and Russell Meads, adopted her from the Iowa Soldiers’ Orphans’ Home/Annie Wittenmyer Home located in Davenport, IA. They brought her home to Ames, IA where she grew up surrounded by her doting dad and loving mom. In 1961, Marianne graduated from Ames High School and soon afterwards moved to Omaha, NE.

By 1966, she was living in Des Moines, IA and working in the engineering department for the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company. In that same year, Marianne met Gene Lippold. Marianne and Gene were married in August of 1966 at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in St. Marys, IA. They would go on to have seven children over the course of the next 20 years: Christi, Teddy, Kevin, Brian, Calli, Katie, and Sarah.

Marianne had a great love of animals, in particular she was fond of dogs and horses. She had many good and faithful canine pets during her lifetime whom she loved and cared for deeply. She was also a proficient horseback rider and raced barrels at rodeos competitively. Marianne loved to garden and especially loved tending her flower beds. She was a talented seamstress, knitter, and did countless embroidery projects for loved ones as gifts on special occasions.

Marianne was a historian. Her greatest skill and hobby was genealogical research. This grew through her passion to discover who her biological parents were. Marianne worked fervently to have closed adoption files opened to adoptees and was the first in the State of Iowa to have her records unsealed due to her hard work and dedication. Over her lifetime, she helped over 2,000 individuals find their biological parents or children. Genealogy was a passion for Marianne till the day she died. Each member of her family received the benefit of her tenacity as she pursued leads that helped fill in their family trees, discovering relations to kings, queens, “witches”, soldiers, heroes and heroines along the way. She abided by the saying, “A family tree can wither if nobody tends its roots”; and she was always ready to give anyone who would listen a history lesson gleaned from her research and investigations.

Marianne was an advocate for children and for all those who cannot speak for themselves. She had seven children of her own because, she often said, she was excited to see what the next one would be like, who they would look like, what they would take seriously, what would make them laugh. She was a devoted grandmother who, on day one, was sure to pat the chubby legs of each of them and tell them how loved they are. She had the great gift of making every child feel happy and secure in her arms.

Marianne will be remembered as a lover of babies, a pillar of strength in her family, a brilliant and precise researcher, a woman who enjoyed a cup of coffee on her quiet porch in the country overlooking her flower beds. She was a determined woman who put “elbow grease” into every endeavor. She gave from the heart and was thoughtful and sensitive. She is loved by many and will never be forgotten.

Marianne was predeceased by her father, Russell Meads and mother Mary Meads (née Latch); Ray Nelson, Frank & Nettie Nelson, Gladys Meads, Fern Wharem (nèe Reed), her half-sister, Katherine Rasmussen (née Wharem), and baby Anna, a daughter, born prematurely whom she lost, along with three other beautiful, loved souls who did not make it to term.

She is survived by her husband Gene Lippold, her children: Christi Barron (Kit), Ted Lippold, Kevin Lippold (Michelle), Brian Lippold (Andrea), Calli Shields (Jason), Katie Lippold (Kristopher), and Sarah Mayhew (Matthew); her grandchildren: Jessica Lippold, Molly Barron, Justin Lippold, Matthew Kerns (Mariah), Christian Lippold, Alex Barron, Autumn Lippold, Peyton Shields, Sawyer Shields, Nolan Shields, Abel Mayhew, Frankie Mayhew, Vinny Mayhew; her great grandchild, Audrey Lippold; as well as several nieces and nephews and an unknown half-brother who is believed to reside in England.

Services will be held at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Indianola, IA on Thursday, March 10, 2022 at 10:00 am. Graveside services will immediately follow at St. Marys Cemetery in St. Marys, IA. A luncheon/memorial will be held afterwards at the St. Marys Hall.