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Darlene Kuennen

darlene kuennen
Darlene Ann Kuennen age 78 of Waucoma, IA, died Thursday, May 12, 2022, at her home. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held 10:30 a.m. Monday, May 23, 2022, at St. Mary's Catholic Church, Waucoma, with Rev. Nick Radloff celebrating the Mass. Interment will follow the Mass at St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery in Waucoma, IA with Darlene's eight sons, Mike, John, Ivan, Mark, Keith, Bruce, Scott, Lloyd, serving as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers are Liz Kuennen, Jo Kuennen, Amy Kuennen, Lisa Kuennen, Christa Kuennen, Anne Kuennen, Kelli Kuennen, Justin Fende, Nicole Kuennen, and Darlene's 20 grandchildren. Following interment please join the family for a meal at the Waucoma Event Center. Friends may greet the family from 3:00 - 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 22, 2022 at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Waucoma where there will be a 2:30pm rosary service by Catholic Daughters of America and 7:00 p.m. Parish Scripture Service. Visitation continues an hour prior to the Mass on Monday at the church. If you are unable to attend Darlene's Mass of Christian Burial please join the family via livestream. https://foveo.stream/hugeback-johnson/darlene-kuennen Live Webcast Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home & Crematory has been entrusted with Darlene's arrangements. 641.394.4334 Darlene’s life — one filled with love, kindness and service — began on Oct. 26, 1943, when she was born to Albert and Dorothy (Blong) Scholbrock in Rochester, Minnesota. When Darlene was 4, her family moved to a family farm near Waucoma, where she grew up with her two brothers and helped her parents on the farm, baby-sat for neighbors and took care of many of the household chores with her mother. She received her education at St. Mary’s Catholic School in Waucoma before transferring to public school, where she was a member of the first graduating class at Turkey Valley in 1961 and the school’s Betty Crocker Homemaker of Tomorrow Award. The summer before her junior year of high school, she met a handsome young man named Francis Kuennen at a dance in Spillville, and the two hit it off almost immediately. They began dating, and even when Darlene moved to Rochester to work at a lab at the Mayo Clinic after graduating from high school, they remained a couple. It was while she was in Rochester that Francis asked Darlene to marry him. She said yes, and on Sept. 3, 1962 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, they exchanged vows, beginning a marriage that was filled with love for 43 years. The Kuennens farmed and welcomed their nine children — Mike, John, Ivan, Mark, Keith, Bruce, Scott, Julie and Lloyd — who had a mother of many talents and who was always so supportive of her children. She was a fantastic farm wife on the Kuennen’s dairy farm, and while Francis tended to the crops and took care of the other livestock, it was Darlene who was the main milker of the cows. She made sure that her husband and the Kuennen kids were well fed with meals that included a meat, a potato, a vegetable and always a dessert after a day of picking rock, baling hay or walking beans. Darlene was also the farm’s self-taught bookkeeper and financial analyst, and she did an unbelievable job in those roles, too. Darlene was a kid at heart, and she loved her holidays, especially Christmas, and her baked goods and sweets were simply the best. She had a generous, kind and patient heart with her children, and she was incredibly proud that all nine of them graduated from college. The Kuennens sold their dairy cows in 2000, and Darlene went to work as a lab manager at Reicks View Farms, where she worked until she retired in 2009. Darlene had a deep faith and was a member of St. Mary’s Church in Waucoma, where she was a member and the treasurer of the Catholic Daughters of America, helped with funeral planning and served as a RCIA sponsor and guided those converting to Catholicism on their journey. She enjoyed her flower and vegetable gardens and made the absolute best strawberry jam. She was a member of three different card clubs, playing bridge, euchre and 500, but her favorite was definitely bridge. She was also the head of the Jolly Old Timers, a club where friendship and fun were always the priorities. Francis’ death in 2005 hit Darlene hard, but she persevered and evolved into a woman who was not only a leader but a pillar of her community. Darlene loved her 20 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren — passing on her knowledge and skills to them, and in her later life, she loved her family vacations with her children and their families to the beach and to the mountains. Darlene loved having her family return to the farm she called home for 60 years, and if they couldn’t make it, she would send them care packages. One year, she mailed out 145 dozen cookies to her family all across the country. This woman touched so many lives over the course of her 78 years and she will be dearly missed by all those who loved her. Darlene is survived by eight sons, Mike (Liz) of Webster City, John (Jo) of Cedar Rapids, Ivan (Amy) of West Des Moines, Mark (Lisa) of Urbandale, Keith (Christa) of West Des Moines, Bruce (Anne) of Hockessin, Delaware, Scott (Kelli) of Parkville, Missouri, and Lloyd (Nicole) of Marion; one daughter, Julie (Justin) Fende of Kansas City, Missouri; 20 grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and two brothers, Gerald Scholbrock, of North Carolina, and Kenneth Scholbrock of Waucoma; her in-laws, Henry (Arlene) Kuennen, Greg (Rosemary) Kuennen, Helen (Fred) Williams, Laura (Art) Matt, Margaret (Gerald) Kuennen, Martin Kuennen, Kathleen (Dennis) Russler, Delores Kuennen, Elaine Kuennen, Jim Kuhn. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Francis in 2005; in-laws, Norbert Kuennen, Luke Kuennen, Mary Ann Kuhn, Neil (Irma) Kuennen, Bob Kuhn, David Kuennen, Carol Kuennen. The family would like to thank St. Croix Hospice who provided comfort and compassionate care for Darlene in her final weeks.

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Memories Timeline


  1. We are so deeply sorry for the loss of your sweet mom. Please give our deepest sympathies to your entire family. Janel & Gary Kuennen

  2. Rest in Peace, Darlene! Happy to have had the pleasure of getting to know you! Thoughts and prayers to ‘the boys’ and ‘the girl’ …Great memories❤

  3. Hugs and prayers to the entire Kuennen family! Darlene will hold a special place in my heart.

  4. Rest In Peace Darlene🙏. Many fond memories! She is finally with FRancis which she was waiting for💕

  5. Rest In Peace, Darlene. Thank you for always welcoming me into your home- many fond memories over the years! You and Francis are again reunited.

  6. The entire Kuennen family has my condolences during this difficult time.. Keeping you all in my prayers.

  7. Hugs and prayers to all of Darlene’s family. What a gem of a person! She will be so missed.🙏❤️

  8. We are convinced that her soul is going directly to heaven. She is a shining example of kindness, compassion and selflessness. She is going to be so, so missed.

  9. Darlene was always such a sweet lady. So sorry for your loss! Prayers to the entire Kuennen family❤️

  10. Sympathy for your family she was my dad’s cousin and I had the pleasure of working with her. She was a special person

  11. Always a friendly smile and wave if I saw her in the yard while delivering her mail. My sympathy to all.

  12. My sympathy to the Kuennen family! Darlene was a very special person and will be so missed. Rest In Peace.

  13. She will be missed by all. Darlene was a true God and Family loving person and will be welcomed into Heaven. Sympathies to all her lovely children and grandchildren.

  14. Mark,Lisa and family, Im so very sorry for the loss of your Mom. I know she meant a lot to you all. Hugs and prayers for all of you.

  15. To Mr. & Mrs. Mark Kuennen & family – we send our deepest sympathy. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

  16. With our deepest sympathy and love From your Glenwood Drive family.

  17. The world would greatly benefit from a lot more Francis and Darlene Kuennens raising families, glad they had such a big one to leave an amazing legacy

  18. Back in the day, Darlene and I taught CCD together, and I learned so much from her, including how to be calm when you needed to deal with a bunch of kids. She had a little experience there! More recently, she would volunteer to help with snacks at Totus Tuus. It was our yearly chance to get caught up, and I so enjoyed those times. My sympathy to the Kuennen family.

  19. Julie, from your 8th Grade St Es volleyball team and their families. You are in our hearts and prayers. We love you

  20. Carl and I did not have the privilege of spending time with Darlene but know she raised an amazing family. Out thoughts are with you at this time.

  21. We are all thinking about you and your family and are so sorry for your loss. Love to you all,Scott and Allyson, Brian and Kyla, and Shannon and Sean

  22. Prayers for the family. Your mom was one of the sweetest person I ever meet.I am glad I could call her my Aunt .Just remember God only takes the best.

  23. Sending love to the Fendes and all of Darlene’s family. What a beautiful spirit to live on in each of you.

  24. Sending love, thoughts, and prayers during this difficult time. With Sympathy – Nick, Hope, Mindy, Brian, Blaine, Alison and Jennifer.

  25. Wishing you peace to bring comfort, courage to face the days ahead and loving memories to forever hold in your hearts. Sending you so many hugs!

  26. Our love, thoughts and prayers are with you! Love, The Trimbles, Clarks, Merrymans, Porters, Thompsons, Pietschs and Morrows

  27. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. From some of your extended Quaker family.

  28. Sending our warmest condolences to the Kuennen Family during this difficult time. -Quaker LP Team. Mike, Andrea, Mitch, Chad, Cedric, Ron, Brent, Joe

  29. Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss… Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.

  30. Darlene was my husband Duane Kuhn’s Aunt. She always had a smile an her face and was so pleasant and knowledgeable. So sorry for this loss. Keeping your family in our prayers. Duane and Carrie Kuhn

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