Bernadine Wilkinson

Bernadine Wilkinson

Bernadine Wilkinson


Bernadine Wilkinson, 85, of Cedar Rapids, IA passed away peacefully surrounded by her family after a courageous battle with ovarian cancer on Tuesday, March 12, 2024 at the Hospice House of Mercy in Hiawatha.

Bernadine Wilkinson was born on October 31, 1938, at the family home near Lamont, IA, the fourth of twelve children to FD and Hazel (Anderson) Brown. She quickly became known as “Babe” to family and friends.

Bernadine “Babe” attended Byron Country School and graduated from Winthrop High School in 1956. She worked various jobs, starting at an early age. One of her first jobs was as a waitress at Home Café in Independence, where one of her steady customers was a young high school student named Tom Wilkinson. She and Tom were married at Immaculate Conception Church in 1962. They made their home together in Cedar Rapids, IA where they raised their four children. They were longtime members of the St. Pius X Catholic Church.

For many years she worked as a bookkeeper for Brite-Way Window Service and Irwin’s Clothing, for her son-in-law Lee in Marion. Babe retired from Banks of Iowa Computer Services in 2000.

Babe is survived by her husband, Tom, and their four children: daughter Michele (Lee) Larson, sons: Brian (Jani Baylor), John (Holly), and Eric; six grandsons: Todd (Hannah), Brad (Jen), A.J. and Brent (Faye) Larson, and Ben (Irma) and Ethan Wilkinson; great-grandson: Ellis Larson and great-granddaughter: Annie Larson. She is also survived by seven brothers: Bernie (Doris), Tom, Mike, Steve, John (Shelly), Paul (Cindy), and Dennis (Janet), one sister, Pat Brown, a sister-in-law, Agnes Wilkinson, and numerous nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her brother and sister-in-law, Bob and Mary Jo Brown, sister and brother-in-law, Barbara and Duane Forkner, Sister Mary Rigdon, sisters-in-law, Cheri Brown and Bonnie Brown, Tom’s parents John and Emma Wilkinson, and sister-in-law and brother-in-law Janice and Bob Dutoit, and brother-in-law Paul Wilkinson.

She blessed our hearts with her life, her laughter, and most importantly her unconditional love. She treasured her family and embraced every moment with them. She especially loved her role as grandma and great-grandma.

The visitation will be held on Saturday, March 16, 2024, at 1:00 PM with services to follow at 2:00 PM at Reiff Family Center, Independence, IA. Burial will follow at St. John’s Cemetery. Memorials may be directed to the family or to the Dennis and Donna Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy in Hiawatha, IA.

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