Karen K. Kesterson Vary, age 71 of Tabor, Iowa died Thursday, May 20, 2010, at Tabor Manor following a lengthy illness. Karen was born February 21, 1939 in Tabor to Edwin Guy Kesterson and Dortha Lavern (Chambers) Kesterson. They later moved to Mount Ayr, Iowa where she attended school. Karen played the bassoon in the marching band, was involved in 4-H and helped on the family farm. She graduated from Mount Ayr high school in 1957.
Karen moved to Des Moines, Iowa in 1960 where she lived until moving with her children in 1970 to Bemidji, Minnesota. She made Bemidji her home where she held many different jobs, made many good, longtime friends and went to Northwest Technical College and then to Bemidji State University where she earned her degree in criminal justice, accounting and medical secretary.
In 1998 Karen moved to Tacoma, Washington where she managed the Best Western until 2003 when she returned to Tabor to be with her mother and lived there until her death.
Karen was preceded in death by her parents; brother, Lyle Kesterson; daughter, Debra Kesterson-Warno; grandson, Nathan Eisenzimmer, and a granddaughter, Lindsey Knickerbocker.
She is survived by four daughters, Diana Gerlofs and husband Jerry of Pinewood, Minnesota, Michelle Wilson of Fargo, North Dakota, Kendra Wolf and husband John of Bemidji, Minnesota and Melanie Riniker of Tacoma, Washington; three sons, David Hacker and wife Debbie of Menahga, Minnesota, Michael Cockayne of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota and Brian Knickerbocker and wife Kim of Young America, Minnesota; 22 grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren; two brothers, Lynn Kesterson and wife Janet of Winterset, Iowa and Mic Kesterson and wife Karen of Tabor, Iowa, and several nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Funeral services were Monday, May 24, 2010, at the Tabor, Iowa Church of the Nazarene with Pastor Jeff Jewett officiating. Interment was in the Tabor Cemetery and memorials will go to the Tabor Church of the Nazarene or the Tabor Rescue Squad. The Crawford-Marshall Funeral Chapel in Tabor, Iowa was in charge of arrangements.