Vigen Memorial Home obituary – Irene L. Hansen, 91, Keokuk

Irene Lois Hansen, 91, of Keokuk, died Friday, April 16, 2021.

Irene Lois Hansen, 91, of Keokuk, IA died Friday, April 16, 2021 At Blessing Health Keokuk.

     She was born on March 13, 1930 in Maywood Township, Benton County MN, the daughter of John and Joyce Mooers Pappenfus.  She graduated from Becker High School in Becker, MN with the Class of 1949. 

     On June 29, 1957, Irene was united in marriage to Wendell Hansen at the South Lutheran Church in Santiago, MN.  He survives.

    She is also survived by one daughter, Marie Peterson (Mitchell) of Maple Grove, MN, two sons, James Hansen of Shafer, MN and Alan Hansen of Tyler, TX, five grandchildren, Timothy Peterson (Emily), Michelle Peschken (Paul), Joan Hansen, Charles Hansen and Kate Hansen, four great-grandchildren, Evan and Dylan Peschken and Collin and Kera Peterson.  She is also survived by two sisters, Grace Harshman of Princeton, MN, Marian Halverson of Brandon, SD, four brothers, George Pappenfus (Celistine) of Becker, MN, Donald Pappenfus (Diane) of Clear Lake, MN, John Pappenfus (Ruth) of Royalton, MN and Leroy Pappenfus (Virginia) of Brandon, SD and many nieces and nephews.

     She was preceded in death by her parents and one sister, Coral Hansen.

     Irene had been employed at Totware, a children’s clothing manufacturer in Minnesota.

     She was a member of the First Lutheran Church in Keokuk.

      Irene was an excellent seamstress and did alterations for people.  She made many afghans which were given to family members and will be treasured for years to come.  She also enjoyed making hanging kitchen towels and over the years had made thousands to give away.  Irene was a wonderful cook and one of her specialties was making delicious homemade pies; she knew the secret of a tender flakey pie crust.

     She and her husband loved to travel and had been to almost every state in the USA.  For the last twenty-two years, they had spent winters in Yuma, AZ.   After Wendell’s retirement, they went on an Alaskan Cruise where they enjoyed white water rafting and then continued their trip by flying to the Artic.  Their adventures also took them abroad.  They made two trips to Europe.  On their first trip they visited Denmark, staying in a unique hotel in Copenhagen which was a converted grainery built during the revolutionary war, Germany, Austria and Italy.   Their next trip took them to Holland where they saw the old windmills, then on to Luxemburg, Belgium, Germany, where they enjoyed river cruises on the Rhine and ending their trip in Paris.  In 2008, they traveled to China where they walked on the original Great Wall and visited the Forbidden City at the center of the Imperial City of Beijing.  A fifty-four day camping trip took them to Australia and New Zealand.   They also made trips to the Panama Canal and Canada.

     A graveside service will be held at a later date at Fort Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis, MN.

     The Vigen Memorial Home in Keokuk is assisting the family with arrangements.

     Online condolences may be sent to the family at

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