Wilma Carolyn Hall Mitchell née Thomas, age 77, passed away at her home on April 6 in Adel, Iowa. Wilma will be remembered for devotion to family and dedication to her community.
She was a doer who quietly made a difference in everything she touched.
Funeral services will be Wednesday, April 12, at 10:30 a.m. at the Adel United Methodist Church 115 South 10th Street in Adel, Iowa. Private Family interment will be at a later date at the Waukee Cemetery Friends may call Tuesday, April 11 after 3 p.m. at the church where family will greet friends from 5 to 8 p.m. with a prayer service at 8 p.m.
Wilma was born in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on May 7, 1939, to Neill and Nina (Carley) Thomas of Oakland, Iowa. She grew up on the family farm and was the valedictorian of her class at Oakland High School. A degree in Home Economics from Simpson College prepared her well for summers spent judging pies at the Iowa State Fair. Wilma married John M. Hall of Waukee, Iowa, on Dec. 16, 1961. The Halls owned Culligan Water Conditioning and raised their four “terrible children” on North 12th Street in Adel, Iowa. Wilma enjoyed the fun of a noisy house full of kids and was a supportive mother to her busy family.
Earning her pilot’s license was a great example of Wilma’s sense of adventure. In addition, in 2007, she fulfilled a life-long dream by taking her family on safari in Africa. She returned to Africa years later with Rotary International. Wilma kept season tickets to University of Iowa football for 50 years, and she loved tailgating with friends. Go Hawks!
Husband John Hall passed away on March 25, 1991. Later, Wilma felt fortunate to find a second act of love and companionship with Jim Mitchell of Adel, and they married October 4, 1997. She was delighted to add Jim’s kids and grandkids to her family. Jim and Wilma spent their time together biking the Raccoon Valley Trail, vacationing in Europe, and as active civic volunteers in Adel. With Jim at her side, Wilma served as board chair of Adel’s Sesquicentennial Celebration. Mr. Mitchell passed away on December 21, 2008.
Wilma’s faith guided her in life. She was an active member of the Adel United Methodist Church, holding many leadership positions, including its highest lay office, the chair of the administrative board. Wilma helped establish the Adel-DeSoto-Minburn Scholarship Foundation, served as its president, and remained actively involved in its success throughout her life. Wilma served as president of the Adel Rotary Club and as president of the Iowa Federation of Women’s Clubs. Wilma claimed to be a mediocre bridge partner but cherished the time with good friends. Later in life, she found joy being with her family at Okoboji (especially grandkids!), laughing, walking, cooking, and doing the crossword puzzle.
She is survived by her brother, Dr. Joe Thomas (Dorlean) of Seattle, Wash.; her children, Julie (Dennis) McElroy of Lamoni, Iowa, C.R. Hall of Wichita, Kan., Dick Hall (Matt Nolan) of Minneapolis, Minn., Andrew Hall of Miami, Fla.; her grandchildren, Mark Little of Urbandale, Iowa, John “Jack” Hall and Carson Hall of Wichita, Kan. Wilma was preceded in death by her parents Neill and Nina (Carley) Thomas, her infant son Jeffrey, and her husbands John M. Hall and James W. Mitchell.
Wilma is also survived by Jim Mitchell’s family: Jamie (John) Hallengren of Spofford, N.H., and Matt Mitchell of Adel, Iowa, and their families, Aaron (Kathleen) Owen, Jon Hallengren, Aaron Hallengren, Joshua Hallengren, Adam (Traci) Mitchell, Brody (Tamara) Mitchell, Kati (Bruce) Myers and thirteen great grandchildren.
Should friends desire, memorial contributions may be sent to the ADM Scholarship Fund or Adel United Methodist Church. Online condolences may be left at mccalleyfuneralhome.com.