December 17, 1922 – July 4, 2014
Audrey Hexom Jordahl was born in Virginia, Minnesota, December 17th, 1922 the first child of Rev. William T. and Charlotte Hexom. She passed away Sunday, July 4th, 2014, in the presence of her son Jim who let son Jonathan speak to her by phone from Korea at the Mill Pond Retirement Community in Ankeny. The family moved to Hawkins, Wisconsin, when she was nine, and she managed to graduate from high school there, even though the family moved to Big Canoe, north of Decorah, Iowa during her senior year.
Audrey interrupted her studies at Luther College during World War II to serve in the U.S. Navy, where she taught celestial navigation to pilots with a flight simulator, returning to graduate in 1948. She later went to graduate school at the University of Iowa, where she met and married Erling Jordahl, a former Navy pilot who was also the son of a Lutheran pastor. They adventured to California, where, without an advanced degree, she talked her way into a job as an engineering assistant at Lockheed Aircraft.
Better career opportunities for the head of the household dictated a move back to Iowa, and there she stayed, close to family, for the rest of her life, primarily in the Coralville / Iowa City area. She played a small part in the origins of the Montessori school in the area, and for her work assisting the director from India and teaching there, earned free tuition for son Jim.
She later worked in real estate, as a stock broker and for years as a Lutheran Brotherhood insurance representative. She was a charter member of Christ the King Lutheran Church and was active on its committees, including evangelism and once chaired the call committee.
She was very active in politics. Not only an active member of the Republican Women, but she also ran for public office twice, both for county supervisor and state representative. Maureen Reagan campaigned for her. She was invited to the White House to meet both Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush. She was active in many organizations, most notably Mensa, for which she was for years the testing coordinator, and WAVES National, for which she was national parliamentarian. In retirement she worked as a substitute postmaster and remained active in volunteering at the University Hospitals. She cared for her grandchildren, Noah and Delilah after school for years, and enjoyed following their development into prosperous adults.
In later years, she enjoyed very much the hospitality and community atmosphere of the Mill Pond Retirement Community in Ankeny, and the frequent visits and constant support of nearby son Jim, his wife Cathy and their daughter Abbey. Jonathan was able to come home from Korea during extended academic vacations, usually in the summer, and also last winter, when she moved to the health center.
Her husband, Erling, spent the last years of his retirement together with her at Mill Pond, from 2006 until he passed away at the age of 93 in May of 2011. Audrey loved to be with her friends, and there are many of you. You are all invited to come and celebrate her life, and her resurrection from the dead, by the Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, at her memorial service at 1:30 PM on Tuesday, July 15th, 2014 at Mill Pond Retirement Community, 1201 SE Mill Pond Ct., Ankeny, Iowa.
- Memorial Service Tuesday, July 15, 2014
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September 18, 2014
I didn't know Audrey but found out her and I share a name after "Googling" myself. I am very saddened to see that she passed. She sounded like an amazing woman and I connected with her on Facebook. She was very sweet and I could tell there was nothing but kindness in her heart. I hope to continue to do the name proud.
July 20, 2014
Dear Jonathan, I was sorry to see that you lost your mother. I know it's hard when you're far away. I'll be thinking of you and of your family.
Caryl Lyons, friend from Linguistics days.
July 11, 2014
Jim and Family, I'm so sorry for your loss. Audrey was a very special lady who was so enjoyable to talk to. I'm sure you will miss her so very much. My sympathies to you all.
July 7, 2014
my sympathy to the family.. audrey is the one that got me started with christ the king, way back when! my thoughts are with you. i lost nadine june 16.