Colleen Ann (Connie) Hannum Bartel, died July 16, 2020 in her apartment in Hopkins, Minnesota, surrounded by her family.
Connie and her twin sister Barbara were born in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on September 14, 1925. A proud fourth-generation resident of Council Bluffs, she was married for 60 years to George Arthur (Art) Bartel, who died in 2010. She was also preceded in death by her sisters Barbara, Patricia, and brother Donald.
She graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School in 1943. While in high school, Connie and Barbara, who both had lovely singing voices, participated in the school choir and all the talent show and theater productions. Her love of music manifested itself often as she would break into song around the house for no apparent reason or sit down to pick out an old show tune at her piano.
Connie and Art raised three sons, Tom and Mark, of Minneapolis, Minnesota, and Matt, of Salt Lake City, Utah. Connie and Art eagerly adopted the boys’ wives, Kristin, Sandra, and Rose, as the daughters they never had, and doted on their seven grandchildren. Connie also lived long enough to meet two great-grandchildren who she would have spoiled rotten if she’d had just a little more time and been just a little sneakier about breaking her assisted living home’s virus quarantine. She never missed an opportunity to curse the plague that so cruelly robbed us of the frequency of the family get-togethers planned as part of her move to Minnesota.
Connie and Art were active citizens of Council Bluffs all their lives. Connie, in particular, was a member of the P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization), an avid and expert bridge player, a frequent recreational golfer who once hit a drive more than 130 yards, a dedicated supporter of the Council Bluffs Library and Mercy Hospital, and a devoted student and advocate of Council Bluffs history.
She was instrumental in the preservation of Kirn Field, at the top of High School Avenue right above the home she grew up in. She never failed to ask every friend of her sons and grandchildren who visited Council Bluffs, “Have you seen the Dodge House?”
Connie spent her time when her family was younger futilely trying to get her three sons to stop fighting with each other. She also strived to get the boys to occasionally do some yard work, which was also in vain. She never gave up saying, “Wait until your father gets home.”
Connie also enjoyed almost any pastime other than cooking, explaining, “Your father won’t eat anything other than meat and potatoes, so why bother?” But her home was rarely without her signature sugar cookies, and she always had plenty of ice cream on hand.
She was always proud of her Irish heritage and had done extensive genealogical research into her family which reached back nearly 200 years. Her Irish also manifested itself in a fondness for Guinness Stout, which she developed later in life.
She was a long-time member of Saint Patrick’s Church, where a service will be held when the “this damn” virus permits. Any memorials are preferred to the Council Bluffs Public Library or the Micah House in Council Bluffs.
The family particularly wants to thank the caregivers at Fox Run in Council Bluffs, The Glenn in Hopkins, MN, and Interim Hospice Care of Saint Paul, MN for the excellent care they gave our mother.