Obituaries for Friday August 18, 2023

Roberta Louise Ball, 88, of Mt. Pleasant, formerly of New London, died Monday, August 14, 2023 at Southeast Iowa Regional Hospice House, West Burlington. She was born in Mt. Pleasant July 20, 1935 to Wilbur and Harriett Elizabeth Waddle Hillard. On June 26, 1955, she married Dwight L. Ball in New London. He died December 8, 2005.

She was a 1953 graduate of New London High School. Roberta was a homemaker and was a member of New London United Methodist Church. She was an avid Iowa Hawkeyes and St. Louis Cardinals fan; loved visiting with family, friends and neighbors; and enjoyed walking her dog, Scooter.

Survivors include three daughters, Deb (Jim) Shull and Sherri Ball of New London and Cindy Culbertson of Ankeny; one son Ron (Dorrie) Ball of Bethalto, Illinois; two grandchildren, Josh (Jenni) Thomas and Ali (Pookie) Johnson; eight great-grandchildren; six step-grandchildren; two step-great grandchildren; two brothers, Ben Hillard of Seattle, Washington and Marvin (Cecilia) Hillard of Phoenix, Arizona; and several nieces and nephews.

Besides her husband and parents, she was preceded in death by her grandson Kaleb Ball, and two sisters, Shirley Benge and Mary Feeney.

The funeral service for Mrs. Ball will be at 2:00 PM, Friday, August 18, 2023 at Elliott Chapel, New London, with Pastor Kathleen Moore officiating. Visitation will begin at 9:00 am with the family receiving friends from 1:00 until the time of the service. Roberta will be buried next to her beloved husband, Dwight, at Burge Cemetery following the service. Memorials have been established for New London United Methodist Church and the Kaleb Ball Children’s Trust. Online condolences may be left at

Elma Jean Hobby, age 93, of Stronghurst, Illinois, passed away Sunday, August 13, 2023 at Roseville Rehabilitation and Nursing Center. She was born August 19, 1929 in LaHarpe, Illinois, the daughter of Hollis and Alvena Heins Owsley. On June 5, 1947, she married the love of her life, Eugene Hobby, in LaHarpe. After 75 years of marriage, he preceded her in death on December 30, 2022.

Survivors include one daughter, Coni Hobby (Dan Sigwart) of Macomb, IL; three grandsons, Dustin (Thea) Hobby, Michael Hupp, and Arron Hobby; six great-granddaughters, Emily, Alexx, Rachelle, Candice, Sydney, Raelynn and Stella; four great-grandsons, Ben, Cole, Elijah, Dylan, and Harrison; two great great grandchildren, Lucy and Thomas; one daughter-in-law, Rhonda Hobby; one brother-in-law. Gary (Doris) Armstrong, and two sisters-in-law, Evelyn Owsley and Carlyn (Phil) Anders.

She was preceded in death by her parents, two sons, Ron and Rick Hobby, two sisters, Margaret Lovitt and Ann Butterfield, and two brothers, Richard and Robert “Bob” Owsley.

Elma shared her husband’s dream of owning their farm one day and worked in the fields right along beside him as much as she could while raising three children. She worked tirelessly in the garden, yard and home. She also worked outside the home to help out throughout the years at various odd seasonal jobs before working for several years at the Fort & Fort Law Offices in Stronghurst. After a short rest, she began working for Dr. Meek in Stronghurst, and worked for him for several years. After some time at home again, she became restless and was an Outreach worker for the Henderson County Health Department. She enjoyed “her” people so much while completing her work that she often commented that she could not believe she got paid for doing something that she loved so much! After over 20 years (and in her 80’s), she retired.

A beloved wife, mother, grandma, and aunt, Elma loved cooking, entertaining, and helping her family, spending time with them whenever possible. Family birthdays were important to her and many times she provided her wonderful red cake for the celebration. She loved helping her family and friends and provided wonderful meals showing her love for each and every one. Faith, family and friends were always her top priorities.

Elma was a member of the Old Bedford Christian Church and was always available to do what was needed at the church. After Old Bedford closed, she attended the Raritan Baptist Church.

The funeral for Elma will be at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, August 19, 2023 at Banks & Beals Funeral Home in Stronghurst with Rev. A. Lee Unger and Aaron Baker officiating. Burial will follow in the Raritan Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 9:30 a.m. Saturday, until time of services, at the funeral home. Memorials have been established for the Raritan Baptist Church and the Stronghurst-Raritan Ambulance Service. Please visit Elma’s obituary at to leave a condolence.

Thomas “Tom” Roy Birkenstock, 79, of Burlington, died Tuesday, August 15, 2023, at the Azria Health Prairie Ridge in Mediapolis.

Born July 16, 1944, in Burlington, he was the son of Roy George and Marjorie Maude Holsteen Birkenstock. On February 26, 1966, he married Sue Ellen Maupin in Dodgeville, IA.

He graduated from Iowa State University with a Bachelor Degree in Animal Science in 1966. Tom spent his lifetime working as a farmer and he was always “Outstanding in his field”.

He was a U.S. National Guard Veteran, serving for six years.

He was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church of Dodgeville, where he served on the church council for many years, taught Sunday School, and was a premarital sponsor. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus. He enjoyed golfing, woodworking, hunting, fishing, and traveling. He was a fan of the Iowa Hawkeyes, Green Bay Packers, and the St. Louis Cardinals. He loved spending time with his grandchildren. Tom especially enjoyed attending their events and vacationing with them. He had a very outgoing personality, always very generous and never knew a stranger.

Survivors include wife, Sue Ellen Birkenstock of Burlington; one daughter, Anne Marie (Brian) Abel of Yarmouth; two sons, Joseph Jeffrey (Shawn) Birkenstock of Burlington and Brian Thomas (Veronica) Birkenstock of Frisco, TX; seven grandchildren, Lindsey, Josh, Kasey, Blake, Brianna, Andrew and Lauren; seven great-grandchildren, Jake, Mateo, Tomas, Sela, Kenna, Jess and Henry and many bonus grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents and three brothers, Jack, Daniel, and Richard.

Visitation will be from 4:00 PM until 7:00 PM Friday, August 18, 2023, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Dodgeville, 13204 Dodgeville Road, Sperry, IA.

The Funeral Mass of the Resurrection for Mr. Birkenstock will be 10:00 AM Saturday, August 19, 2023, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Dodgeville with Fr. Jake Greiner as the Celebrant. Burial will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery, Dodgeville. A time of food and fellowship will be held at St. Mary’s Parish Center in Dodgeville following the burial.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established for St. Mary’s Catholic Church of Dodgeville.

Prugh Funeral Service is in care of the arrangements.

A photo tribute can be viewed and condolences can be sent to the family by visiting Thomas’s obituary at

Kenneth Haley Jr., 79, of Gladstone, Illinois, passed away August 8, 2023, in a side-by-side accident.
Born May 26, 1944, in Burlington, Iowa, he was the son of Kenneth Sr. and Dorothy (Mauthe) Haley. He married Rita D. Zachmeyer on September 14, 1962. He retired from his own business, Ken Haley Trucking and he worked for several other trucking businesses along with running heavy equipment.
He loved to work which was his hobby as well.
He played basketball and softball. He loved snowmobiling, motorcycle riding, camping, and spending time with his family, extended family, grandkids, and great grandkids.
Kenny and Rita celebrated 56 years of marriage. They traveled extensively together taking wonderful trips over the years such as snowmobiling trips to Wisconsin, several motorcycle trips, Graceland and the Grand Ole Opry, California, Washington, Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, Nevada and spent their 25th anniversary in Hawaii.
Survivors include his two daughters; Robin (Larry) South and Kathy (Jeff) Foley; five grandchildren, Bryan, Nichole, Keven, Joe and Rebecca; nine great grandchildren Isabella, Logan, Jesse, Victor, Ezra, Haley, Conor, Alex and Emma; and two brothers Jack Haley and Gary Haley.
He was preceded in death by his parents and two brothers.
The service for Mr. Haley will be at Lunning Chapel at 11:00 AM Saturday, August 19th where family will receive friends one hour prior to the service. Interment will be in Aspen Grove Cemetery.
Memorials have been established for Burlington Fire Department and Burlington MedForce for the excellent care and compassion they displayed during the family’s time of need.

Geneva Verne Loyd Stewart, 85, of Burlington, died Tuesday, August 15, 2023, at the Southeast Iowa Regional Hospice House in West Burlington.

Born February 17, 1938, in Gladstone, IL, she was the daughter of Edward Wesley and Helen Verne Hunter Huss. She married Louis William Loyd in 1957. He preceded her in death in October 1978. On May 8, 1998, she married Lloyd Jack Stewart at the Little Brown Church in Nashua, IA. He passed on June 10, 2017.

She attended Gladstone High School.

She worked at Antenna Craft for 16 years, as well as Heatilator for eight and a half years and Leopold’s for eight and a half years before retirement.

She was a member of the Nazarene Church. She enjoyed dancing, playing pool, BINGO, attending family reunions and loved going to the casino.

Survivors include her daughter, Sue Ann Loyd (Ed Murphy) of Burlington; grandson, David Lee Loyd of Burlington; granddaughter, Candy Lynn Loyd of Burlington; great-grandchildren, Jacob, Matthew, Chianne, and Kathryn; brother, Edward Wesley of Burlington; and many nieces and nephews and great-nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, both husbands, five brothers, five sisters, one grandson and several nieces and nephews.

Cremation has been entrusted to the care of Prugh Crematory.

The family will receive friends from 3:00 PM until 5:00 PM Monday, August 21, 2023 at Prugh Funeral Service, 3940 Division Street.

A memorial has been established for the Southeast Iowa Regional Hospice House.

Prugh Funeral Service is in care of the arrangements.

Condolences can be sent to the family by visiting Geneva’s obituary at