Mary Woodruff

Mary A. Woodruff passed away March 26, 2022 in Jefferson at the age of 95. A celebration of Life will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, April 30 at First United Methodist Church (UMC) in Jefferson. Interment will follow in the Jefferson Cemetery. Visitation with family will be at the church 9-10:15 a.m., prior to the Celebration of Life. 

Memorials are suggested to Cottey College in Nevada, MO or the First United Methodist Church, Jefferson, IA. 

Mary Alice Duvall was born Oct. 12, 1926, in a farmhouse near West Chester, Iowa. She was the daughter of June Winegarden Duvall and Walter Earl Duvall.   

Mary attended country school, graduating May 1944 from high school in West Chester in a class of 10. She attended Nurses training at St. Luke’s Hospital in Cedar Rapids, graduating May 1947 in the newly formed Cadet Corp. The Cadet Corp was created to increase supply of nurses during wartime. The last six months of her nurses training was working at Veterans Hospital in Des Moines. She spent the first summer out of nurses training in Illinois, helping care for three little boys (cousins) after their mother died suddenly. Returning to nursing, she worked nights at a Cedar Rapids hospital, as a Head Nurse at Des Moines Iowa Methodist Hospital, Polk County Health, and the hospital in Forest City, Iowa. She later volunteered as Nurse for blood banks, TB testing, and school immunization programs.

Mary and Harold Woodruff were married July 17, 1949. They met while she was employed at Veterans Hospital in Des Moines, when she went for ice cream at a drug store where Harold worked. After Harold’s graduation from Drake Pharmacy College, the couple lived in Dubuque a while, then back in Des Moines, moving to Forest City in 1952. In September of 1957, Harold and Mary bought Potter Drug in Jefferson, having decided Jefferson was where they wanted to raise their family and grow with the community. In addition to raising a family and lots of volunteer time, Mary worked part time in the store until it was sold in 1986.

Other activities included teaching Sunday school, UMC Circle leader, church committees, delegate to annual conference, leadership of the UMC Women. Cub Scout Den Mother and Camp Fire leader for 13 years, Women’s Club Officer, Parent Teacher Organization, school volunteer, officer in Order of the Eastern Star, Rainbow Advisory Board. She has belonged to PEO since 1963 and served as president and other offices and received her 50-year pin. She also belonged to Culture Club and helped with Meals on Wheels and ARC. 

Mary was the state president of Iowa Pharmacy Association Women’s Auxiliary in 1972. 

Mary and Harold were active in the community, worked at ball games, and taught confirmation class. The Woodruff family hosted a Rotary exchange student from Brazil for three months and a Japanese student for three weeks through International Exchange.

Mary and Harold traveled to every state in the United States and many other countries. 

Mary liked to cook and bake, garden, plant flowers, and do crafts like ceramics and embroidery. She enjoyed reading books and playing games with grandchildren.  The grandchildren liked her cookies! 

Mary was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers: John and Earl Duvall, one sister, Ruth Holmes; her husband, Harold; and a granddaughter, Joy Campbell. 

Mary is survived by five children: Alan (Judy) Woodruff of Columbia, TN; David (Pam) Woodruff of Manchester, MO; Scott (Kim) Woodruff of Kansas City, MO; Kay (Kelly) Campbell, Panora, and Susan (Doug) Durbala of Mankato, MN; nine grandchildren: April (John) Burnett, Ryan (Abby) Woodruff, Jamie (Niw) Rattanapamonsook, Matthew Woodruff,  Megan (Mark Root) Woodruff, Kyle (Stephanie) Campbell, Kristofer (Christina) Campbell, Danielle (Gregg) O’Hara, and Jennifer Durbala; 19 great-grandchildren, many other relatives and friends.

Services arranged by Slininger-Schroeder Funeral Home, Jefferson, Iowa. 

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Jefferson Bee & Herald
Address: 200 N. Wilson St.
Jefferson, IA 50129

Phone:(515) 386-4161