Deborah Leah Bierman

Deborah Leah Bierman

Deborah Leah Bierman


With great sorrow and bittersweet gratitude, the Bierman-Nunemaker Family announce the passing of our beautiful, kind, exceptionally strong, brave, and incredibly generous wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend, Deborah Leah Bierman of Decorah, Iowa. Deb passed away peacefully, surrounded by her husband and six children on March 5, 2023, at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics in Madison, Wis., due to complications of COVID-19 compounded by her underlying chronic medical conditions.

Deborah was born to Bruce and Donna Nunemaker on Jan. 27, 1959, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She attended Regis High School, graduating in 1978, and completed her degree in cosmetology at Capri College in Cedar Rapids.

Through her brother Jerry’s band and his friendship with Scott Bierman, Deb met the love of her life who later became her husband on May 16, 1987, at the Little Brown Church in Nashua, Iowa. Scott and Deb moved to Decorah, Iowa in 1992, where they raised their six children and where they resided at the time of Deb’s passing.

In her mid-adult years, Deb developed a rare, debilitating lung disease, chronic interstitial pneumonitis/pneumonia of undetermined etiology, suspected due to an unspecified autoimmune connective tissue disorder. In September of 2011, she was blessed with a lung transplant. Deb and her family are forever grateful to the unknown organ donor who graced Deb with 11 and-a-half additional and wonderful years of life.

Deb’s greatest joy in life was her family. Family meant everything to her, just as she meant and continues to mean everything to them. Deb’s love for her family did not stop at the people within it, her love was equally displayed toward her Chihuahuas and numerous grand-pets. Deb truly enjoyed nature and found happiness watching the deer, birds and other wildlife frequent her and her husband’s beautiful country property. Deb had a passion for music and singing. She almost always had music playing, sometimes leaving one song on repeat for an entire car ride or for hours on end while working around the house. Her family has fond memories of lengthy phone calls with her where she would break the brief silence by singing along to the song she was listening to. Her beautiful voice is surely missed. Deb also enjoyed cooking and baking, often sharing numerous recipes with her family and friends on social media; shopping, although rarely for herself and more often for others; long phone calls with loved ones, even if it was about nothing at all; trips to the apple orchard with her husband and pumpkin patches with her children and grandchildren; playing Canasta; watching movies, especially with family; and genuinely appeared to display the most joy when serving or caring for others. Even with her medical struggles, Deb provided unbeatable care for her loved ones. Her nurturing, kind, selfless and giving nature was next to none. She was the most dedicated friend, partner and confidant. To know her was to love her, and to meet her was finding a best friend or surrogate mother. She will be forever missed.

Deb is survived by her loving husband, Dr. Scott Bierman of Decorah, Iowa; children, Holli (Amy) Petrich of Rochester, Minn., Kami Frasher of Marion, Iowa, Brittani Meyer (Joe Schumacher) of Cedar Falls, Iowa, Jordan (Samantha) Bierman of Center Point, Iowa, Justin Bierman of Decorah, Iowa, and Dylan Bierman of Luana, Iowa; grandchildren, Taylor, Carter, Jace and Colt Bierman, Blake and Anna Bartelt, Brinleigh and Matilyn Meyer, Londyn Frasher, River Petrich, and Vivian and Evelyn Schumacher; three brothers, Mike (Deb) Nunemaker, Dave Nunemaker and Jerry (Tina) Nunemaker; sister, Sheila (Roger) Townsend; as well as many cousins, nieces, nephews, dear friends, her Chihuahua Bella, and many grand-pets.

Deb was preceded in death by her parents, Bruce and Donna (Kruse) Nunemaker; her parents-in-law, Lee and Luanne (Pickart) Bierman; her sister, Barbara Oestern; her brother, Bruce Nunemaker Jr.; her sister-in-law, Kathy Nunemaker; as well as beloved cousins, nieces, nephews, dear friends and cherished Chihuahuas, Peanut and Coco.

Family and friends are invited to attend a Celebration of Life which will be held on Tuesday, March 14, beginning with a vigil service at 4 p.m. and visitation from 4:30 to 7 p.m. at Stewart Baxter Funeral & Memorial Services, 1844 First Ave. NE, Cedar Rapids. The funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday, March 15, at St. Jude’s Catholic Church, 50 Edgewood Rd. NW, Cedar Rapids, followed by burial at Mount Calvary Cemetery, Cedar Rapids.

Memorials may be directed in Deborah’s name to the UW Health Transplant Center at

Those unable to attend are invited to watch the service via livestream. Please find the livestream link on Deb’s Tribute Wall and share your support and memories with her family at under obituaries.

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