Mary Bernice (Knapp) Noeller

Mary Bernice (Knapp) Noeller

Mary Bernice (Knapp) Noeller


My name is Mary Bernice (Knapp) Noeller. My journey began on Oct. 20, 1952, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. I was born to George Knapp and Mary Ruth (Woods) Knapp, the youngest of five sisters. Despite our age gap my sisters Arlene, Earlene, Linda, Sandra and I became the closest friends. I graduated from Benton Community High School in 1971 and earned a cosmetology license at Pitze’s salon in Waterloo.

On Nov. 4, 1989, Steve and I wed at the Little Brown Church in Nashua. I remember the first time I said, “I love you, Steve” to which he replied, “…well, that’s nice.” And another time he said, “there’s the house I lived in with my first wife” to which I replied, “you know, that could still be arranged.” We’ve been married for 33 years.

I was preceded in death by my parents and my sisters, Helen “Earlene” Stueck, Lois “Arlene” Johnson and Sandra “Sandy” Vetter.

I am survived by my husband, Steven Noeller of Marion; my children, Sara (Aaron Luna) Brislawn, Mandy (Michael) Holman and Dustin Platner of Marion, Andy (Jenny) Noeller of Iowa City, and Erin (Patrick) Ferguson of Olathe, Kan.; my sister, Linda Stark of Marion; and brother-in-law, Bob Johnson of Newhall. I will miss seeing my eight grandchildren, Daniel Brislawn, Jonathan and Elizabeth Holman, Caden, Whitney and Lily Noeller, Avery and Nash Ferguson, grow up to be the incredible people they are certain to be.

I battled breast cancer, chemotherapy, radiation, a double mastectomy in 2018, and was cancer-free for three years. In October we found out that the cancer came back in my liver. This time I no longer had the strength to fight it. After only 70 years, I passed away peacefully in my home on Sunday, Feb. 5, 2023. You may think this day marked the end for me but know that I will live on in your memories.

I’ll be there when you smell a yellow rose or see a cluster of white daisies growing in the wild.

You’ll feel my love when you feel the tickle of a cat’s whiskers like our Siamese cats “Buddy” and “Wally” and, before them, “Teddy” and “Joey.”

You’ll receive my warmth when you cozy up with a quilt and remember I was a machine quilter and spent countless hours stitching what my kids would call “scraps” into beautiful patterns.

You’ll know my beauty when you see battered barn boards, winding streams, and gnarly tree limbs, like the ones I painted so meticulously.

You’ll know my humor when you see quirky farm animals like three goats peering out a barn door or a red cow named Myrtle.

You’ll remember me when you put on a funny T-shirt because I was the graphic artist at T&M in Tipton for 10 years, and up to a few weeks ago I was still printing cards, mugs, and gifts for loved ones.

You’ll think of me when you see a school bus and remember Steve and I worked for Linn Mar Transportation. I rode the bus as a Special Needs attendant and met some of the most wonderful people we enjoyed to this day.

We have had a wonderful life together. Some ups, some downs, but all in all, I was a lucky person with a beautiful family and friends. Thank you for being a part of it. I love you and will miss you, but I’ll have a cold one waiting for you on the other side.

Love, Mary

The funeral will be on Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2023, at 11 a.m. with a visitation one hour before service at Murdoch Funeral Home at 3855 Katz Drive in Marion, IA 52302.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Cedar Valley Humane Society at 7411 Mt. Vernon Rd. SE in Cedar Rapids, IA 52403.

Please share a memory of Mary at under obituaries.

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