Marlys 'Marty' Brunsvold, 73
Marlys “Marty” Brunsvold, age 73 of Davenport and formerly of Nashua, died Wednesday, April 15, 2020, at Genesis Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House in Bettendorf.
A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home/Olson Chapel is entrusted with arrangements. Online condolences for the Brunsvold family may be left at hugebackfuneralhome.com.
Marlys (Marty) Lesta (Crooks) Brunsvold was born on June 6, 1946, to Martha Emma (Wolff) and Ray Arthur Crooks in Charles City.
She was the oldest of six children and grew up on a farm northeast of Nashua. Even as a farm girl, she was one of those take charge, no-nonsense kind of people, who was an outstanding student at Nashua High School, where she was a member of the Class of 1964.
Her dream was to become a nurse, and she finished her LPN degree at North Iowa Area Community College in Mason City in 1969 and earned her RN pin in 1974 from Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids.
In 1972, Marty attended a University of Iowa football game with friends, and the opponent, score and final outcome weren’t important, for it was that day she met Ron Brunsvold, and even after he moved to California, they maintained a close, long-distance relationship that culminated on Dec. 7, 1974, when Marty and Ron exchanged vows at St. John Lutheran Church in Nashua.
The couple’s honeymoon consisted of returning to Manteca, California, where they began their married life. In 1978, the Brunsvolds moved to Davenport, and Marty continued both her nursing career and education. She earned her bachelor of science nursing degree from Marycrest College in Davenport and received her master’s degree from the University of Dubuque.
Marty was a compassionate, caring nurse for 22 years at St. Luke’s Hosptial, now the Genesis Medical Center, in Davenport, where she spent the final 15 years of her career as a hemodialysis nurse.
Marty, though, will always be best known for her volunteer work. She spent 24 years as the parish nurse at Grace Lutheran Church, started the “sleep sack” program at Grace, taught CPR and First Aid classes, made frequent visits to hospitals and homes to visit with and give Holy Communion to those who were unable to attend church services, made casseroles for the St. Joseph Evening Meal program across the river in Rock Island and much more. Marty found great joy in helping others, and she was honored as one of the finalists for the Quad-Citizen of the Year Award in 2019.
Marty and Ron didn’t have children, but she was a great aunt to her nieces and nephews. Marty loved to travel; she and Ron took numerous trips and cruises both in and around the United States and overseas.
She recovered from a bout of cancer 20 years ago, but Marty was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2019.
Still, she continued to volunteer and continued “using the gifts that God” gave her to continue to bring joy to the lives of those she served.
Marty is going to be missed by her husband of more than 45 years, her family and her friends, but God must have needed another volunteer in Heaven and He only wanted the best so He called Marty home.
Marty is survived by her husband of 45 years, Ronald Brunsvold of Davenport; one brother, Lee (Regina) Crooks of Iowa City; along with many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
She was preceded in death by her parents; three brothers, Ron, Roger, and Terry Crooks; one sister, Norma Ridder.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Grace Lutheran Church/ Parish Nurse Program 1140 East High St, Davenport, IA 52803.