Cover photo for Arlene Velma Marcussen's Obituary
Arlene Velma Marcussen Profile Photo

Arlene Velma Marcussen

d. December 11, 2016

September 16, 1919 ~ December 11, 2016

A Celebration of Life Service will be held in the spring

Burial of Ashes will be in the Neola Township Cemetery, Neola, IA


2 Daughters – Jeannine (Lloyd) Thomas of Fort Collins, CO

Kandice Slater of Davenport, IA

1 Son – Lynn (Tricia) Marcussen of Orange, CA

5 Grandchildren – Mitchell (Kait) Thomas of Colorado Springs, CO

Michele (Lance) Shimomura of Lakewood, CO

Weston Slater of Vancouver, BC

Brennan Slater of Iowa City, IA

Kayleigh Slater of Ames, IA

6 Great-Grandchildren – Gabrielle Shimomura of Lakewood, CO

Emily Shimomura of Lakewood, CO

Grant Shimomura of Lakewood, CO

Zoe Thomas of Colorado Springs, CO

Danica McElwee of Lakeside, CA

James McElwee of Lakeside, CA

Other Relatives & Friends

Arlene Velma (Petersen) Marcussen, daughter of Frederick and Jenny (Diggle) Petersen, was born in Neola, Iowa, and passed away on December 11, 2016, at the age of 97. Arlene attended Neola elementary and high schools, graduating in 1938, and married Kermit Marcussen on July 26, 1941 in Council Bluffs.

They lived in Jacksonville, Iowa, where Arlene helped keep the books at the Marcussen Brothers Trucking Company. In 1950, Arlene and Kermit purchased and moved to the family farm near Kimballton. Arlene was a hard worker who raised three children on the farm while doing the never ending farm wife work of maintaining large gardens, canning and freezing produce, baking, preparing large meals, doing numerous outside chores, and even driving the Farmall tractor when needed. She kept an immaculate house, and insisted that Kermit’s work clothes be starched and pressed. In 1965 they moved to Harlan, Iowa, where Arlene stayed busy as a cook for Harlan schools and with catering for Mickel’s Restaurant.

Arlene was a very social and outgoing person, quick to laugh, who greatly enjoyed dancing and get togethers with family and friends. She never lacked for something to say. She and Kermit would join other couples and follow the big bands around to various dance halls, which they did well into their eighties. An evening without a wild card game of pitch was not to be missed. She took risks and generally won, which always sparked one of her memorable comical comments to the unlucky losers.

She was devoted to her family, and it was a great joy for her to be with family on reunions that involved boating trips to Missouri and Minnesota, as well as the regular family get togethers on holidays.

Arlene was preceded in death by her husband of 72 years, Kermit Marcussen; by her parents; her sisters Marian Durlam and Cecil Hurley, brother Dale Petersen; and son-in-law David Slater. She is survived by her three children, daughter Jeannine (Lloyd) Thomas of Fort Collins, CO., son Lynn (Tricia) Marcussen of Orange, CA., and daughter Kandice Slater of Davenport, IA.; five grandchildren, Mitchell (Kait) Thomas of Colorado Springs, CO., Michele (Lance) Shimomura of Lakewood, CO., Weston Slater of Vancouver, BC., Brennan Slater of Iowa City, and Kayleigh Slater of Ames; six great grandchildren, Gabrielle, Emily, and Grant Shimomura of Lakewood, CO, Zoe Thomas of Colorado Springs, CO., Danica and James McElwee of Lakeside, CA., and other relatives and friends.

A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date in the spring (Arlene’s favorite time of year) for family and friends. Burial of ashes to be in the Neola Township Cemetery in Neola. Condolences may be left online at
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Arlene Velma Marcussen, please visit our flower store.


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