(Mary) Jean Penningroth, 94 of Tipton, Iowa, died April 26, 2022 while a resident of Cedar Manor Nursing Home in Tipton.
She was born Oct. 22, 1927, the daughter of Forest and Dorothy Rhoads. She was a lifetime resident of Cedar County, having attended Country School Linn #1, and graduating from Mechanicsville Consolidated School in 1945. She also attended the University of Iowa.
Jean married William Penningroth on November 23, 1948. She was a homemaker (excellent cook, as many can attest), and worked on the family farms for many years. She also had a career in store management and operations for Seifert’s (Women’s Clothing Stores in 3 Eastern Iowa locations); and as Credit Manager for Armstrong’s Department Store in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Between the years spent in retail, Jean was very active in local and state government capacities. She was appointed to the Cedar County Board of Supervisors in 1973, and was then twice elected to office, serving through 1984. She was the first woman to serve on the Cedar County Board of Supervisors, opening the door for more to follow. While a County Supervisor she served on many committees, and worked closely with other county personnel, most notably the Secondary Roads Department. She was also involved with state activities, and was appointed by Gov. Robert Ray to the State of Iowa Crime Commission in 1977, serving as Chairman & Vice Chairman for 8 years. She also was a member of Elected Officials of Iowa Committee, and Chairman of Elected Officials of Eastern Iowa.
Jean is survived by her daughter Lynn (Craig) Emrich of Marion, Iowa, and daughter-in-law Beverly Penningroth of Tipton. She has two granddaughters: Kim (Terry) Mente and Angela (James) Knox, and 6 great-grandchildren: Ashley, Austin, and Alyssa Mente; and Jaxson, Ely and Issac Knox, all of Tipton.
She was preceded in death by her husband in 2011; son Bruce in 2015, parents, and sisters Margaret Rhoads and Miriam Heneks.
At Jean’s request there will be no funeral service or visitation. Instead, Jean would prefer you remember her as someone always looking for ways to improve the lives of others.
Online condolences may be shared at www.fryfuneralhome.com. Family asks that all cards and memorials be addressed to Fry Funeral Home, PO Box 30, Tipton, IA 52772, in c/o Jean Penningroth.
Memorials may also be directed to Cedar Manor Nursing Home in Tipton. A big THANK YOU goes to the entire staff for their excellent care of Jean.
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