Vigen Memorial Home obituary – Mary M. McDowell, 98, Keokuk

Mary M. "Betty" McDowell, 98, of Keokuk, died Wed. Aug. 5, 2020.

Mary M. “Betty” McDowell, 98, of Keokuk, IA died Wednesday, August 5, 2020 at her home.

     She was born October 11, 1921, in Mt. Pleasant, IA the daughter of Oran and Cornia Miller Kerr.  Betty graduated from Mt. Pleasant High School with the Class of 1940.

     Betty was a member of First Christian Church in Keokuk.

     She had been employed by Sheller Globe in Keokuk until her retirement.  She later worked for the Chamber of Commerce until she was eighty years old.  Betty loved being involved with the community. 

     Betty touched the lives of many people with her warm smile and kind heart.  She loved spending time with her family and cherished the time she spent with them. 

     She is survived by her daughter, Susan Geltz (Bruce) of Argyle, IA, one daughter-in-law, Evelyn McDowell of Quincy, IL grandchildren, Louis Clark (Teresa), Terri Kaye Helm-Vahle, Julie Johnson (Phillip), Crystallee Payton (Joe), Matthew McDowell, great-grandchildren, JoeyLyn Helenthal, Jacey Helenthal, Cole Geltz, Timothy McCarty, Tyler McCarty, Whitney Morgan, Andy Clark (Kayla), Brian Clark (Sara) and Cameron McDowell, great-great-grandchildren, Isabella Morgan, Michael Morgan, Jaxin Morgan, Taiytum McCarty, Drew Clark and baby girl Clark due in September, along with several nieces and nephews.

     She was preceded in death by her parents, three sons, Steve McDowell, Michael McDowell and Terry McDowell, one great-grandson, Tony McCarty, great-great-grandson, Ethan Morgan, two brothers, Earl Kerr and Dean Kerr and two sisters, Maxine Foster and Thelma Wilson.

    A memorial service was held at 11 a.m., Tuesday, at the First Christian Church in Keokuk with Reverend David Turner officiating.  Burial will be a later date in the Oakland Cemetery in Keokuk.  

     Social distancing requirements will be in place at the service and attendees may be limited according to those requirements.  Masks are strongly encouraged.   

     Memorials may be made to the American Legion Post #41 or the Shriners Hospital.

     Online condolences may be sent to the family at

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