Kristi Kay Gruetzmacher

Kristi Kay Gruetzmacher, 56, of Clear Lake, passed away Wednesday, June 13, 2018, at Hospice of North Iowa – Inpatient Unit.

A service was held on Tuesday, June 19, at One Vision Campus, 1200 North 9th Street West, Clear Lake, with pastor Scott Sokol officiating.

Burial was held in the St. Peters Lutheran Church Cemetery, Westgate.

Memorial contributions may be directed to Kristi Gruetzmacher Memorial Fund.

Kristi K. Gruetzmacher was born Jan. 6, 1962, at Mercy Hospital in Oelwein, daughter of Harold and Darlene (Zupke) Gruetzmacher. She attended River Hills School, Cedar Falls, and Stanley Vocational School. Following her schooling, Kristi lived at home until her father passed and moved to the Curtis House, Oelwein, in 2006. She began working at Buchanan County Community Services, Independence, and Quality Choice Inc., in Oelwein, which included working at Goodwill. In 2010,  Kristi moved to the Pioneer Cottage at Opportunity Village and later moved to an independent group home in Clear Lake.

She was very involved in the Special Olympics. Kristi had won many medals and trophies throughout the years in swimming, bowling and basketball. She was a member of the Strike Harder Bowling team on Thursday night league in Forest City.

Kristi was the first baby baptized and confirmed at Peace Lutheran Church, in Oelwein. She was a member of the Bethlehem Lutheran Church, in Mason City.

Her dream was to be a bride, work as a secretary, and drive a car. Kristi’s golden years were at the Opportunity Village, where she enjoyed the independence of moving around the campus on her bike, swimming in the pool, working at the center, and picking her paycheck up on Fridays. She knew the value of quarters for pop (Diet Coke), dollars for arm wrestling and five dollars for Subway sandwiches. To Kristi, every day was her birthday and she loved to go to the casino on her real birthday with her family. She never met a boy or man that she didn’t want to hug, kiss or marry.

Kristi was very musical, she enjoyed listening to Michael Jackson, the Jersey Boys and Lawrence Welk on Saturday nights on TV. She played the guitar for the Oakwood Nursing Home, she also loved entertaining friends and family. Kristi loved dancing, being the center of attention in front of the band and busting the moves. During her stay at the Opportunity Village she participated in the Bell Choir, Sign Language Choir and Tuesday afternoon Spiritual Life.

Kristi is survived by her four siblings, Kelly (Merle) Brockshus, of Mason City, Jackie Tallman, of Cresco, Vicki (Steve) Wolfe, of Mason City, and Dwight Gruetzmacher, of Duluth, Minn.; 10 nieces and nephews, Sara Wolfe, Matt Wolfe, Heidi Wolfe, Tony Tallman, Benge Tallman, Lindsay Tallman, Josh Brockshus, Noah Brockshus, Talia Gruetzmacher, and Clayton Gruetzmacher; and along with numerous great-nieces, nephews, and extended family members. She will be remembered as the heart of the family.

She is preceded in death by her parents, Harold and Darlene Gruetzmacher.

The family would like to take the opportunity to thank all of Kristi’s special friends who cared for her, especially Julie and Michelle.

Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, Clear Lake, was in charge of arrangements.

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