E. Jeanne Reames

September 12, 1923October 9, 2020


On Friday, Oct 9, 2020, Jeanne passed away at the age of 97 at the Iowa Jewish Senior Life Center in Des Moines where she had lived since February 2018.

Jeanne was born September 12, 1923 in Jewell, Iowa to Arthur and Frances Kalseim. In 1943 Jeanne was invited to join the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps. This gave her the opportunity to go to Iowa Lutheran School of Nursing and become a Registered Nurse. While in Des Moines, studying nursing, she met her future husband Harry J. Reames Jr. and they married in Jewell on March 2, 1946.

Jeanne and Harry raised their family in West Des Moines and then Windsor Heights. They spent their summers at their summer cottage on Clear Lake. After their kids were on their own, and Harry had retired, they sold the Clear Lake home and bought a home on Lake Panorama and a condo in North Fort Myers, Florida. A couple years after their first grandchild was born, they sold the Panorama home and and bought a house in Clive a few blocks from their son’s home. Jeanne enjoyed daily water exercises and had to frequently shield her hair from the grandchildren splashing in the backyard pool.

Jeanne began her career as a school nurse for the Des Moines Public Schools and she worked there until her daughter was born in 1955. In 1956, her son was born and completed their family of four. When her kids were in middle school, Jeanne started working some weekly shifts at nursing homes in the Des Moines area to get back to her love of nursing. A couple years later, she accepted a position teaching the clinicals for the LPN (licensed practical nurse) program at Des Moines Tech High School. Jeanne loved working with the young nursing students. In 1980, Harry retired from his job, and told her she needed to retire too. They were moving to Florida to spend their winters there. That was the end of the nursing career she so loved… Until in 2018 after her move to the Life Center, the nurses loved consulting with her for her nursing advice!

Jeanne was a charter member in PEO Chapter JM in Des Moines, Iowa. She was also a member at Westminster Presbyterian Church. More recently she joined the Daughters of Norway making more new friends while enjoying the foods and history of her Norwegian heritage. Jeanne and Harry enjoyed playing bridge or dining out with the “dinner group”.

She was preceded in death by her brother Kal (William) Kalseim, sister Jo Ann Spiess, nephew Mike Spiess, and daughter-in-law Lori Reames. In January 2004, her world changed completely when her husband Harry passed away while they were at their home in Florida. Jeanne is survived by her daughter Nancy (Tim) Wyatt, granddaughter Katie Wyatt, son Jim Reames, granddaughter Renee (Emily) MacKinnin, grandson Zach Reames, and five nephews, Bill, Bob, Dave, Rick and Tom (and their families).

A Celebration of her life will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Tuesday, October 20, 2020 at McLaren’s Chapel in West Des Moines. The Nursing Honor Guard will have presentation at 3 pm. A private entombment will follow at Resthaven Mausoleum. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Hospice of the Midwest.


  • Celebration of Life

    Tuesday, October 20, 2020

  • Nurse Honor Guard Tribute

    Tuesday, October 20, 2020


E. Jeanne Reames

have a memory or condolence to add?

Jeanne Morris

October 21, 2020

Jim, Nancy, Renee, Zach, and Katie

I was saddened to learn that Jeanne had passed, but glad she lived such a long, happy life. She was a wonderful woman and will always have a special place in my heart. I have so many wonderful memories of spending time with your family. I regret that we lost touch and would enjoy catching up. Again, so sorry about the loss of your mom. I still miss my mom every day.

Robin Thomas

October 17, 2020

Jim, Nancy, Renee, Zach and Katie:
Our condolences to you and your larger family in this time of Jeanne's passing. Jeanne and Harry have been a part of our family for a good long time; from service in Panama, to National Guard vacations in Minnesota, to living in the Des Moines area and Clive.
Our best for you all in the future and thank you for the friendship...

Robin Thomas for Bill, Margi, and Bob Thomas

Chip Darling

October 15, 2020

Jim, Goddaughter Renee, Zach & Nancy,

So many good and fond memories of a particularly classy lady.

She will be missed.

Best to you all,


Maureen Hegedus

October 15, 2020

Jim, Zach, and Renee,
So sorry to hear of the loss of your mother and grandmother. She was truly blessed to live such a full life. May the memories of your times together provide comfort today and always.


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