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Cleola Marie, third child of Hugh and Gladys Reynolds Burchett, was born on November 9, 1925 and died on April 20, 2013 at the Ringgold County Hospital in Mount Ayr, Iowa.

Cleola was raised in the vicinity of Ringgold and Caledonia, Iowa. She graduated from Mount Ayr high school in the year of 1943 and started teaching school in the fall of that year and continued for five years.

On August 26, 1948, she united her life with Carroll ‘Lefty’ Geist and to this union two sons were born, Cullen Keith and Crae Lynn.

Cleola believed in civic duty by serving on many boards: United Methodist Church, Mount Ayr Golf and Country Club, Rose Hill Cemetery, City of Mount Ayr Zoning Appeals and the Republican Party of Iowa at the local, district and state levels. She loved her family and many that she and Lefty called ‘adopted family.’

She is survived by son Crae Geist and wife Jodie and their children, Sarah and fianc?? Alex Stephens and Kelsey and her boyfriend, Kyle Thelen; Cullen’s children, Blaine and Adriene, husband Randy Rathbun; daughter-in-law Becky Geist, and nieces and nephews.

Preceding her in death were her husband, ‘Lefty’; her son, Cullen; parents, Hugh and Gladys Burchett; brother, Bill and wife Inez; sister, Betty and husband Pete Powers, and brother, Keith and wife Winona.

A memorial fund has been established to the Mount Ayr Little League Program. Arrangements were by Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home.

A celebration of life was held at the United Methodist Church in Mount Ayr on Tuesday, April 23, 2013, with Rev. Skip Rushing officiating. Memories were by Adriene Rathbun. Musicians included Deb Cannon and Dr. Collus Lawhead.

Casket bearers were Steve Fetty, Jim Pedersen, Darrell Dodge, Ted Smith, Ron Rainey and Steve Mitchell.

Honorary pallbearers were All Who Shared My Life.

Cleola was laid at rest in the Rose Hill Cemetery in Mount Ayr. 

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