Cover photo for Mary Lillian Tinkham's Obituary
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Mary Lillian Tinkham

September 11, 1942 — March 9, 2023

Meriden, Iowa

Mary Lillian Tinkham

Mary L. Tinkham, 80, of Meriden, Iowa, passed away Thursday, March 09, 2023 at Good Samaritan Society nursing home in Holstein, Iowa. 

 

Public visitation with family present will be held on Saturday, March 25, 2023 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in Cherokee. A memorial service will be held at 11:00 a.m. with Pastor Mike Agnew officiating. It was Mary’s desire to be cremated and private burial will be in Murphysboro, IL at a later date.  Greenwood-Schubert Funeral Home in Cherokee is handling arrangements. 

 

Mary Lillian was born September 11, 1942 to Lora Marie (Mattingly) Sarensen and James Paul Sarensen in Murphysboro, Illinois.  Growing up, Mary enjoyed singing in the church choir and playing the organ.  She loved being a twin to her brother Perry.  

 

Mary graduated from Murphysboro High School and attended Southern Illinois University for a short time.  She worked in her father Paul’s beauty shop before moving to St. Louis.  On June 10, 1967  Mary married Stanley G. Tinkham in Murphysboro, Illinois.  The couple met on a blind date while they were both working in St. Louis.   Together Stan and Mary raised their family in Manning, Iowa for twenty-seven years before moving to Meriden in 1994.  

 

Mary’s passion of caring for the elderly led to a lifelong career as a Certified Nursing Assistant in long term care facilities, namely the Manning Plaza, Countryside Estates, and others.  Even after retirement Mary continued to visit residents and provide comfort to the lonely by playing the organ, reading to them, and lending a listening ear.

 

Mary loved spending time with her children and grandchildren. Friends and family would describe Mary as a good-humored individual who embraced her flaws and could laugh about life. She was a creative person and thoroughly enjoyed crocheting, painting with watercolors, and sewing. She frequently shared her baked goods and fun food creations with others.  Mary loved movies and looked forward to patio time, camping and traveling with Stan.

 

Mary was a member of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in Cherokee.  She became a resident of Good Samaritan Society in December 2022 due to declining health.

 

Mary is survived by her children Cheryl (Jeff) Jensen of Dunlap, IL, Paula (Cory) Halbur of Manning, IA, Thomas Tinkham of Maurice, IA, Sandra (Andrew) Fuller of Lake in the Hills, IL; grandchildren Morgan Halbur, Andrea (Josh) Gordon, Elisa Jensen, Grant Halbur, Jordan Jensen, and Jack Fuller; one brother Perry (Dana) Sarensen; sisters-in-law Joyce Helmink and Gloria Tinkham ; several nieces and nephews. 

 

Mary is preceded in death by her parents, her husband Stanley (February 20, 2023), nephew James Sarensen, and brother-in-law Roger Tinkham.

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Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, March 25, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

St Paul's United Methodist Church

531 W Main St, Cherokee, IA 51012

Visitation will be held one hour prior to her service at the church.

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Memorial Service

Saturday, March 25, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

St Paul's United Methodist Church

531 W Main St, Cherokee, IA 51012

Memorial services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, March 25, 2023, at St. Paul's United Methodist Church in Cherokee. Pastor Mike Agnew will officiate. Burial will take place at a later date this spring in Illinois.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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