Virginia Pierce

Virginia Mickelson (Ginny) Pierce of Storm Lake died on Jan. 29, 2019, at the age of 96.

Memorial services will be held at a later date. The family asks that memorials be given to: Keith & Virginia Pierce Music Endowment Fund at Buena Vista University: 610 W. Fourth St., Storm Lake, IA 50588. Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Home in Storm Lake is in charge of the arrangements.

Ginny was born on March 4, 1922, at her parents’ farm near Rembrandt, to Carl Edwin Mickelson and Emma Hadenfeldt Mickelson. She was baptized and confirmed in the Rembrandt Lutheran Church and attended school in Rembrandt, graduating in 1939. Ginny attended Buena Vista College and graduated in 1941 with a teaching certificate.  She was an elementary school teacher for several years in Ruthven and Marathon.

On Jan. 8, 1944, Ginny married Keith Wilson Pierce in Evanston, Ill., when Keith was serving in the United States Navy. After the war, Ginny and Keith returned to Storm Lake, where Keith practiced optometry with his father.  Ginny and Keith raised three sons: Jeff, Tim and Michael. Ginny created a warm and nurturing home life for her husband and boys and always made people feel welcome, including the friends of her children.  

Ginny was a member of Lakeside Presbyterian Church, where she taught Sunday School for a number of years. She was actively involved and had leadership roles in a number of local organizations and clubs throughout her life, including the ’37 Club, P.E.O., the Storm Lake Art Club and Questers.  She and other friends started “Bridgettes” after the war, of which Ginny was the last surviving charter member. She was a co-founder of Storm Lake’s “Meals on Wheels” and served on its board of directors for 11 years. She also served as president of both the BV Hospital Auxiliary and the Buena Vista County Republican Women.

Ginny was an active alumna of Buena Vista University. Her activities included serving on the BVU Alumni Board for three years and, along with her husband, as a BVU Order of the Arch Co-Chair in 2004.  She and Keith were honored to receive the Henry Olson Distinguished Service Award from BVU in 2005.  

Ginny lived a long and vital life centered around family. She was a devoted and caring mother to her three boys. She was blessed with six grandchildren and played an active and positive role in their lives. The past 10 years saw the addition of six great-grandchildren, and Ginny thoroughly enjoyed her time with them.  She and Keith reached a significant milestone earlier this month when they celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary.

Ginny was a person of grace, charm and character.  She was a wonderful and supportive wife, mother, grandmother, aunt and friend and loved by many people.

Ginny’s survivors include her husband, Keith; sons: Jeff Pierce of West Des Moines; and Michael K. (Margaret) Pierce of Houston, Texas; daughter-in-law Laura Pierce of Storm Lake; grandchildren: Allison (Kevin) Pinkowski of  Kansas City, Mo.; Ryan (Heather) Pierce of Lincoln, Neb.; Martha (Eric) Davis of  Tucson, Ariz.; Michael R. (Krissi) Pierce of Ankeny; Kathryn Pierce of Austin, Texas; and Timothy M. Pierce of Houston, Texas; great-grandchildren: Kaylee Pierce, Connor Pierce, Emma Pinkowski, Samuel Pinkowski, and Henry Pierce; sister-in-law, Ruth Mickelson; and nieces and nephews: Karen Sisler, Edwin Mickelson, James Mickelson, Gary Mickelson, Steven Mickelson, Rosalie Pierce-Rhodes, Mark Pierce and Cynthia Pierce. 

Ginny was preceded in death by her parents; her son Tim E. Pierce; and her brother Roger Mickelson.