Iona Robbins, 96

Our loving mother, Iona Harriet Bries Robbins, died peacefully on Monday, Aug. 31, 2020 at Thurston Woods Villa.
She was born July 20, 1924, in McIntosh, Minn., a daughter of Philip and Alma (Nesland) Bries. She was baptized in the Lutheran church in 1924, was confirmed in 1938 and continued to live in McIntosh until 1943.
Her father was born in Luxembourg and her mother was Norwegian. She appreciated and enjoyed her ancestry. She visited and made friends of the families in both countries.
After graduating from McIntosh High School in 1942, Iona moved to Wayne and worked as a riveter on the nose ring of the B24 Bomber at Willow Run. She transferred to Time Study. It was at Willow Run where she met her husband, Jack E. Robbins. They were married on Aug. 8, 1944, in McIntosh and moved to Colon in 1945. Their life together continued almost 67 years until Jack’s passing on July 1, 2011.
In addition to working 32½ years at Kirsch Company in Sturgis, Iona also busied herself with Colon United Methodist Church, which they joined in 1957, the Methodist choir, the Community Historical Society and as a volunteer in Emergency Food. They participated many years as members of the Battle Creek Square and Round Dance Club, as a Girl Scouts and Brownies leader and Tri-County Council program counselor, and a charter member of Sons of Norway Askeladden Lodge #5-610 of Kalamazoo, formed in 1988. Iona enjoyed her family, church work, community service, cooking, baking, sewing, knitting, crocheting, leathercraft, refinishing antique furniture and reading. Jack and Iona were recognized as Honorary Citizens of the Year in Colon by both the Colon Chamber and Colon Kiwanis. The couple also was awarded the Community Citizen Award by Colon Grange in 1988. Iona had a charitable heart and lifestyle.
Iona is survived by two daughters, Jackie (Larry) Boals and Vicki (Gilbert) LeRoque, both of Sturgis; a granddaughter, Susan (LeRoque) and husband, James Davis, of Monroe; two granddaughters-in-law, Kerry (Gary) Bradford of Los Alamitos, Calif., and Lora (Mike) Ianucilli of South Whitley, Ind.; great-grandchildren Derrik Bankemper of Los Alamitos and Nicholas, Michael and Jacob Ianucilli of South Whitley; five step-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Jack E. Robbins; her parents; two grandsons, David Bankemper and Lee Elliott; and sisters Marvel Gordon of Seattle and Frances Fowler of Prairie Farm, Wis.
The family wishes to thank her friends who have been thoughtful of her the last years.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests those wishing to make a memorial to consider Colon United Methodist Church for stained- glass window repair; Community Historical Society for future roofing repair fund or your personal choice. She has chosen to be cremated.
Due to COVID-19 regulations, a service celebrating the life of Iona Robbins will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020, at Lakeside Cemetery, with the Rev. David J. Farrell officiating.

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