Margaret Fern DeGeest, professional romance novel reader, lover of long talks at the kitchen table, and slim cigarette aficionado passed away on Monday, July 12, 2021. Maggie was born Margaret Fern Douglas on May 4, 1934 to Tracy Earl and Fern (Johnson) Douglas at Mahaska hospital in Oskaloosa. In 1942, Maggie moved to Tracy, IA where she would live the rest of her life.
Maggie married Donald Kerr in August 1951 and had two daughters, Kathy and Barbara. They divorced and she went on to marry Duane DeGeest on April 16, 1955. They were married for over 57 years before Duane’s passing in 2012 and they had three children - Lisa, Valerie, and Steven Douglas.
Growing up with Grandma Maggie you would’ve never known that deer were a common roadside occurrence due to the abundance of decorations paying tribute to the white-tailed animals and that the color orange doesn’t belong on vinyl floors or kitchen cabinets. Her quick wit, sharp tongue, and gift-of-gab could make even a stranger feel like family. She was a voracious reader, avid ‘You Might Be a Redneck If’ calendar connoisseur, and a loving parent and grandmother. Everyone will miss her storytelling, family tree keeping, and, most of all, her wonderful sense of humor.
Maggie is survived by her large family including her 5 children: Kathy (Ron) Beal of Tracy, Barbara (Mark) Greene of Knoxville, Lisa (Bob Lowers) Sloan of Ft. Collins, Colorado, Valerie (Jim) Lee of Pershing, and Steven Douglas (Amy Moore) DeGeest of Woodstock, Georgia. 10 Grandchildren: Jennifer (Greg Davis) Clark, Corey Beal, Shawna (Scott McCullough) Greene, Abby (Brad) Heaberlin, Kyle Rowland, Jacob (Erika) DeGeest, Jesse (Janelle) DeGeest, Erica DeGeest, Madison and Taylor Sloan; 15 Great grandchildren – Sydney (Eli) Jans, Tanner (Klaaske Miller) Fee, Colton (Brandi Jo) Beal, Dylan and Payton Beal, Cole, Emma and Drew Heaberlin, Haley, Paige and Ava DeGeest, Cooper and Cambell McCullough, Easton and Reese Blandford; 9 Great-great grandchildren: Avelynn, Jaxen, Klara, Haizley, Lukas, Sydney, Steven, Scarlett and Sebastian. She is also survived by a sister-in-law, Carol DeGeest, 2 nephews, Mike and Mark Douglas, many other relatives and friends, and the black cat – who will remain unnamed as a majority of the family cannot remember which cat it really is – that sits on the porch waiting for food whenever you enter her home.
Margaret was preceded in death by her husband, Duane, her parents, her brother Dave Douglas, 3 brother-in-laws, and 3 sister-in-laws.
Services celebrating Maggie's 87 years will be held on July 16, 2021 at 10:30AM at the Winfield funeral home with burial in the Bellefountaine Cemetery in Tracy. Memorials can be made to the Tracy Methodist Church or the Bellefountaine Cemetery.