DYSART: Judy Ann (Fleming) Merchant of Dysart, IA, passed away on Thursday, December 21, 2017 after a long struggle with cancer. Judy was born on June 11, 1950, to James W. and Donna (Grimm) Fleming of Garrison. She graduated from Dysart-Geneseo High School in 1968, and from Gates Business College, Waterloo, in 1969. On June 7, 1969, she married Dan L. Merchant, son of Clyde and Shirley Merchant of Garrison. The family will hold visitation at Calvary Baptist Church, 407 Main Street, Dysart, from 4:00-7:00 PM on Tuesday, December 26. Funeral services will be held at Calvary Baptist Church at 10:00 AM on Wednesday, December 27. The internment will immediately follow at the Garrison Cemetery, after which, a luncheon will be served in the Calvary Baptist Church fellowship hall. Rev. Daniel Hartwig will officiate at the funeral and graveside services. Phillips Funeral Home in Vinton is in charge of arrangements, online condolences may be left at: www.phillipsfuneralhomes.com.
Judy grew up at her family’s farm near Garrison, IA; just miles from Dan’s family’s farm. They lived in a number of locations over their 48 years of marriage. Although Iowa was always home, they lived in Kansas, Illinois, Wisconsin, North Carolina, and Colorado before eventually returning to Iowa and making Dysart their final home. Judy spent many years using her organizational skills in various office environments and voluntarily established several church libraries, with her career ending at the Tipton Public Library in Tipton, IA. Her life passions were women’s and children’s ministries and her home was always open to anyone in need. She was an avid gardener, scrap booker, family historian, and loved writing short stories for her grandchildren. In 1987, Judy typed, edited, and published a 500 page work titled Our Family, The Flemings: A Four-Century Record. The book, authored by her late Aunt Edna Fleming, documented family history as far back as the 1500’s, a copy of which resides in the National Library of Congress.
Judy is survived by her husband, Rev. Dan Merchant, retired pastor of Cedar Street Baptist Church in Tipton, IA; daughter Amy Jo Wrobel, husband David and daughters Kylie and Lillie of Ankeny, IA; son Lieutenant Colonel Jason Matthew, wife Michelle of Ankeny, IA and children Cerena (Virginia), Isaac (Kansas), and Jacob (Ankeny); and son Chaplain Courtney Jon, wife Shelly and children Matthew and Allison of Fort Leonardwood, MO. She is also survived by her mother, Donna Fleming of Dysart; brothers Joseph (Mary Jeanne, deceased) of Vinton; James A. (Debra) of Garrison; and sister Jean (Larry) Karpisek of Dysart. In addition, Judy is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews. Judy was preceded in death by an infant brother John, an infant granddaughter Ellie Mae Wrobel, and her father James W. Fleming.
Memorials may be made to Iowa Cares (Iowa Association of Regular Baptist Churches), a ministry to assist IARBC pastors in the state of Iowa who are going through difficult financial times or to Calvary Baptist Church, Dysart.
Condolences may be left at: www.phillipsfuneralhomes.com.