Eunice J. Nading

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Eunice J. Nading, 102, of West Union, died peacefully in her home with family by her side on Sunday, May 10, 2020. Eunice, the daughter of Arthur and Hilda (Lemke) Staack, was born on June 17, 1917, in Guttenberg. She was baptized and confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church in Clayton Center. At the age of 2 years, Eunice moved with her parents to a farm near Clayton Center, where she was raised in a German community and attended Denmark Country School. During her childhood, Eunice spoke only German in her Clayton Center home and in church.

On June 10, 1940, she married Merlin Nading, of Littleport, at the Little Brown Church in Nashua. Together they farmed Rockcrest Farms near St. Olaf. Eunice and Merlin welcomed their daughter, Diane, in 1945, and shortly thereafter moved to join her parents in a farming operation west of Volga. Eunice maintained a large flock of chickens and a tremendous strawberry patch. Together, Merlin and Eunice developed a registered Holstein dairy herd. Following Merlin's death in 1985, she farmed with her grandson, Russell, and his wife, Dawn. In 1989, Eunice was awarded the Clayton County Distinguished Dairy Producer Award. 

Eunice was a long-time member of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Volga and a member of the WELCA. She enjoyed sharing her gift of baking for the St. Paul women’s annual fundraising events. She was also a member of the Volga Sunshine Club. In 2001, Eunice moved to West Union to be nearer to her family. Her favorite pastimes were playing cards, watching the Iowa Hawkeyes, listening to polka music and, most importantly, spending time with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. In her later years, she was a devoted fan of her great grandchildren’s musical and sporting events in Minneapolis and West Union. When asked about the secrets to her longevity, Eunice commented, “I prayed a lot, worked hard and ate healthy food.”

The family would like to express sincere gratitude to Northeast Iowa Area Agency on Aging and Gundersen Palmer Lutheran Hospice for the compassionate care and support provided to allow Eunice to remain in her own home. 

Eunice is survived by her daughter, Diane (Jim) Frey of West Union; three grandchildren, Robyn Frey (Mark Wickenhauser) of Cologne, Minn., Russell (Dawn) Frey of West Union and Tanya (Ross) Lippincott of Eden Prairie, Minn.; seven great-grandchildren, Sydney and Riley Swenson, Zoey, Zach and Jessica Frey and Josie and Tommy Lippincott; and several loving nieces and nephews. She will be greatly missed by her family.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Arthur and Hilda Staack, her husband, Merlin, her sister-in-law, Faye (Cyril) Kraus, and her brother-in-law, Kelly (Jo) Nading.

Due to state and federal guidance on gatherings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the family will not be having a public memorial at this time. A private family service will be held.

Burnham-Wood-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Service of West Union is helping the family with arrangements.

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