Tuesday, November 15, 2016 3:43 pm
Florene Ellen Klosterboer, 92, of Decorah, died Nov. 8, 2016, at the Aase Haugen Nursing Home. She was a resident there since 2005. A memorial service is at 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 19, at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Decorah, with a visitation the evening before from 4 to 7 p.m. at the church. Her remains will be laid to rest at Phelps Cemetery in Decorah. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church or Lutheran Services in Iowa.
Flo was born Jan. 25, 1924, in a house on Main Street of Farmersburg. She was the sixth of seven children born to Ernest and Clara (Henkes) Walter. Her parents owned the Buick and Chevrolet Garage, light plant, ice cream shop and a millinery store. When the Depression hit and times got hard they moved to a farm on the edge of town. Flo was baptized at Giard United Methodist Church. She was confirmed and also learned to play the organ at Saint John Lutheran Church, Farmersburg. She attended Iowa State Teacher’s College and was the 5th-8th grade teacher in St. Olaf from 1941-1945. Along with her classroom instruction, she enjoyed putting on spelling bees and plays with the students in the town’s new auditorium. After teaching she became deputy county recorder in Elkader, until her marriage to Edward Klosterboer May 23, 1948. They first lived in Grundy Center (Ed’s hometown) where Ed had been elected County Recorder after serving in WWII. While there, Flo worked as an abstractor at an attorney’s office from 1952-1959. They were members of Bethany Presbyterian Church in Grundy Center for 11 years. In 1959, Flo and Ed moved to New Hampton, where they owned and operated Bowl-a-way Lanes. Flo started teaching piano lessons in New Hampton. They were members of Trinity Lutheran Church in New Hampton until 1961. After a brief stay in Cedar Falls, they moved to Decorah in 1963. Ed managed the bowling alley and recreation center at Luther College. Flo took good care of their three children and cooked the meals. She continued piano teaching until 1982. Flo found great pleasure in decorating their homes. They were active members of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church where she taught Sunday school and helped provide hospitality. During the early 1980s, Ed and Flo lived briefly in Dubuque, before moving back to Decorah when Ed retired.
Staying connected with friends and family was a priority for Flo; she faithfully visited, wrote and called to keep in touch. Flo found much of Gerhard Frost’s poetry to be meaningful. One line she particularly liked was, “When the sun begins to set on my life’s day, I am sure that I will see that the best time I ever invested was the time I gave to being a friend.” Flo often entertained family and friends with delicious home-cooked food along with songs on the piano. She also enjoyed camping trips and spending time on their patio or front porch, especially with friends and family. Neighborhood get-togethers on Rural Avenue in Decorah brought them much joy. In later years, Ed and Flo wintered at Woodlands Camp near Orlando, Fla., where they again made many new friends. After Flo and Ed moved into Aase Haugen Nursing Home, Flo was still able to play the piano for several years even after most of her memory had faded.
Florene is survived by her children: James (and Laurel) of Elkader; Lisa (and Susan Mullins) of Dedham, Mass.; and John (and Jana) of Decorah; grandchildren: Jesse, Sara, Zoe and Eli; great-grandchildren: Axel, Lumen and Micah.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Ernest and Clara Walter; her siblings: Phyllis, 1922 and Eugene, 1928, as infants; Maloy Walter, 1977; Victor Walter, 1981; Clarion Mueller, 1994; and Dorothy Schmidt, 2003. Her husband Edward passed away Oct. 28, 2011.
May God bless her memory among us.