Phyllis was born July 3, 1937 at home to Edwin and Frieda (Bergmeier) Stokebrand in rural DeWitt, Nebraska, the youngest of four children. She was baptized into Trinity Lutheran Church and confirmed March of 1951. She was raised on the family farm south of DeWitt. Phyllis attended country school through 5th grade then transferred to the DeWitt school system due to District 13 only having three students. She graduated from DeWitt High School in 1954. Phyllis began teaching country school while attending Doane College in Crete, Nebraska. She then transferred to the University of Nebraska Lincoln graduating in 1959 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Education degree. After graduating from UNL, Phyllis taught 2nd grade at Garfield Avenue School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Phyllis married Richard Hagemeier, the son of John & Bertha Hagemeier, on July 3, 1960 at Trinity Lutheran Church in DeWitt. The couple moved to Ft. Louis, Washington, where Richard was stationed and Phyllis taught school on the base, making many lifelong friends. Following Richard’s honorable discharge from the Army, they moved to Ida Grove in 1963 where they raised their three children.
Phyllis was very engaged in community and church activities. She advocated for and worked hard on the Pleasant Valley Bike Trail. She served on the Community Housing Board, Horn Hospital Auxiliary, the Library Board, and the Ida Grove Centennial and Ragbrai committees. She was actively involved in the local Republican party for many years. Phyllis was in church bell choir, church circle, recorded church services, and served on the remodel committee for St. Paul’s Lutheran Church’s 125th Anniversary & Rededication.
Phyllis loved spending time with family and friends. She enjoyed golf and her Euchre group. She hosted many social events at her home including a “royal wedding reception” at 4:00 a.m. for Charles & Diana as reported by the Ida County Pioneer Record. Phyllis enjoyed gardening and taking care of her yard in her quest to win the “Yard of the Month” award. She decorated anything and everything for every holiday including risking serious injury to put Christmas lights on the large evergreen in her front yard. She knitted, crocheted but sewed only when she absolutely had to. Phyllis enjoyed bird watching, chocolate and orange pop. She loved college football, basketball, and volleyball. She taught her children basic math skills by running the NCAA tournament pool for many years. Phyllis was, of course, a loyal Cornhusker fan.
Phyllis passed away at age 84 on September 2, 2021 in Ida Grove, Iowa. She was preceded in death by her husband, Richard, in 2019; her parents; sister, Darlene Pohlman; brother Wallace Stokebrand and sister-in-law Donna; and sister-in-law Virginia Stokebrand.
She is survived by her two daughters Teresa and Jami; son Rick and daughter-in-law Kristina; grandchildren Annika, Nathan, and Kristian; brother Norman Stokebrand; many nieces and nephews; and her granddogs Ellie and Dexter.
Visitation will be Friday, September 10, 2021 from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. and funeral services will be Saturday, September 11, 2021 at 10:30 a.m., both at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Ida Grove. Interment to follow at the Ida Grove Cemetery. Phyllis' service will be live-streamed and can be viewed at: www.facebook.com/StPaulIdaGrove . A celebration of life luncheon reception will follow interment at the Ida Grove Country Club. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in Phyllis' memory to the Ida Grove Volunteer Ambulance Service, 701 E. 2nd Street, Ida Grove, IA 51445.
Ernst Funeral & Cremation Services of Waukee has been entrusted with Phyllis' final arrangements.