Juanita Mae Gjerde Okland
Juanita M. Okland, 85, Lake Mills, passed away Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017 at the Lutheran Retirement Home, Northwood. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Wednesday, Dec. 27, at Synod Evangelical Lutheran Church, Lake Mills, with Pastor David Emmons officiating. Burial will be in the Synod Lutheran Cemetery. Visitation will be Tuesday, Dec. 26, from 5-7 p.m., at Mittelstadt Funeral Home, Lake Mills, and will continue one hour prior to the service at the church on Wednesday.
Juanita Mae (Gjerde) Okland was born onApril 6, 1932 in Forest City, to parents, Edward and Iona (Robinson) Gjerde. She attended and graduated from Forest City High School in 1949 and went on to obtain her teaching certificate from Waldorf College in 1951. This began a career of more than 40 years of teaching in the communities of Fertile, Goldfield, Ledyard, Garner, and Lake Mills. The majority of Juanita’s years were spent teaching first grade and during her time in Lake Mills, she went on to further her own education through Buena Vista University and obtained her Bachelor’s degree in 1986. Juanita retired in 1994.
On June 17, 1966 she was united in marriage with Robert Okland at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Forest City. The couple had recently celebrated 51 years of marriage.
Juanita had a passion for animals and loved teaching her students about the cycle of the monarch butterfly, she was an active member at the Synod Evangelical Lutheran Church, and she enjoyed making and collecting dolls.
She is survived by her husband, Robert Okland, Lake Mills; son, Mark (Pam) Okland, Loveland, Colo.; daughter, Jana (Mike) Hagen, Lake Mills; five grandchildren: Johnna (Bryson) Wise, Zachary (Kayla Johnson) Okland, Lacey (Matt) Fleming, Kristi (Kevin) Comstock, and Brooke (Nick Rice) Hagen; six great-grandchildren: Logan Wise, Stefan Wise, Micaiah Wise, Marisol (Jorge) Contreras, Lukas Comstock, and Leo Comstock; three great-great-grandchildren: Annaniah, Miguel, and Nevaeh Contreras; as well as nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Juanita was preceded in death by her parents and grandparents.