Vera Juanita Petrich, daughter of Howard and Naomi (Saupe) Cleveringa, was born September 28, 1933 in Sheldon, Iowa. She spent her early childhood years in rural Archer, IA where she attended school, graduating from Archer High School with the class of 1951. The following year, she furthered her education at Northwestern College in Orange City, IA and upon completion of her studies, obtained a bookkeeping position with the Archer Cooperative from 1952 until 1955.
On December 4, 1954, Vera was united in marriage to Norman William Petrich at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Sheldon, IA. Her life took a different turn as she and Norman began their agricultural endeavor together and welcomed three children to their family: Linda, Mark and Emily. Being an Iowa farmwife meant Vera’s days were always full, and usually rewarding. Besides taking care of her home and children, she managed a huge garden every summer and froze or canned the produce for everyone to enjoy in the year ahead. While Norman and the hired men were handling the crop production, it was Vera’s responsibility to make sure their sheep were tended to. As her own “flock” got older, Vera resumed her bookkeeping duties at the Cooperative in Archer, beginning in 1968 and working until her retirement in 1995.
Vera’s interests also included “off-farm” activities, such as belonging to the DAR, card club, and 3M. After Norman’s passing in 1985, Vera became a member of the Archer Reformed Church where she participated in the women’s church group. She also volunteered her time to those needing transportation assistance to and from medical appointments.
Having spent most of her life working outdoors or keeping track of finances indoors, Vera found flower gardening to be a relaxing mix of both. She also enjoyed doing a little traveling, and every now and then the grandkids were invited to go along. It made some special memories for them, and time spent with her family and grandchildren was always precious to Vera.
On Thursday, January 16, 2020, Vera left this life at the age of 86. With her passing, she will once again join her husband, Norman; her daughters: Linda Ensz and Emily Petrich Knight; her parents, Howard and Naomi Cleveringa; parents-in-law, William and Emma Petrich; and brother-in-law, Norman Van Donslear.
Keeping her memory close at heart are her son, Mark Petrich of Boyden, IA; seven grandchildren: April Petrich Knight, Jamie (Mark) Pyle, Laura (Rob) Ensz, Katie Knight, Kyle (Kylah) Petrich, Kody Petrich, and Naomi Petrich; six great-grandchildren; sisters: Ruth Ann Van Donslear, Colleen (Stan) Lemkuil, Marge Cleveringa, and Carol (Dudley) McDowell; other relatives and many friends.
She will be missed greatly by all those who shared her life.