Cover photo for Fern  Van Otterloo's Obituary
Fern  Van Otterloo Profile Photo
1949 Fern 2020

Fern Van Otterloo

March 15, 1949 — August 11, 2020

A funeral service for Fern Van Otterloo, age 70, of Hartley and formerly of Milford, will be held Monday, August 17, 2020 at 10:30AM at the outside worship area of First Lutheran Church in West Okoboji. Visitation will be on Sunday, August 16th from 2:00-4:00PM at Turner Jenness Funeral Home in Milford.

Fern Carolyn Van Otterloo was born March 15, 1949 in Primghar, Iowa to Frederick and Edna (Armstrong) Lorenzen.

Fern married Gary Harlan Van Otterloo on September 20, 1968 in Sheldon, Iowa. They moved to Milford, Iowa in 1972. Fern then moved to Hartley in 2016.

Fern was an ultimate care giver. She spent her life sacrificing her wants and needs for the betterment of another. All who knew her knew that she had the compassion of a saint, a God fearing peace giver. Fern originally went to beauty school to be a hairstylist but found more enjoyment caring for the residents at the Milford Nursing Home as a CNA. When her son Gerritt was born she felt the need to stay at home with him and started a daycare for the neighborhood children. Don't you dare climb her fence! When Fern’s Children were grown she went back to the Milford Nursing Home. Fern also spent many years sewing, her second career love and eventually Fern retired as a Home Health Care Provider. Throughout the 42 years Fern and Gary shared the house on Clover Lane they had one of the largest in-town gardens. Year after year they would grow fruits and vegetables galore! Tomatoes were Ferns favorite fruit, one year having just over 130 tomato plants that she started in the winter months in her basement.  Fern spent many of her mother's final years working together to create intricate, unique quilts for each of Grandma Pop's children and grandchildren to make sure the family kept warm and had a handmade gift from Grandma.

Heaven truly gained an angel on August 11, 2020, when Fern passed away at the Hartley Community Memorial Health Center at the age of 71.

Survivors include daughter, Ali (Scott) Carpenter; son, Gerritt (Maren) Van Otterloo; Grandchildren; Jordaen Duhn, Miles Van Otterloo and Halsten Van Otterloo; Great-Granddaughter, Letty Lynn  Rongved; sister, Barb (Dave) Harn, brothers, Richard Lorenzen of Apache Junction, AZ and Jim (Suki) Lorenzen of Washington State, nieces, nephews and friends.

Fern was preceded in death by her husband, parents, stepfather, brothers, and nephew.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Fern Van Otterloo, please visit our flower store.


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