Holland-Coble Funeral Home: Obituaries

Holland-Coble Funeral Home

Opal Arlene Van Baalen Opal Arlene Van Baalen
(September 20, 1918 - April 25, 2012)

Opal Van Baalen, 93 of New Sharon passed away Wednesday, April 25, 2012 at the Oskaloosa Care Center. Funeral services will begin at 2:00 pm on Saturday, April 28, 2012 at the Holland-Coble Funeral Home in New Sharon. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service. Interment will be held in the Union Mills Cemetery at Union Mills. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to New Sharon Rescue Unit or the Harvest Community Fellowship.

Opal Arlene Van Baalen, daughter of Oliver and Maude (Harter) Stutzman was born on September 20, 1918 in New Sharon, Iowa. She was a 1935 graduate of New Sharon High School and attended some classes at William Penn College. On March 27, 1937, Opal was united in marriage to Arthur Van Baalen in Montezuma. To this union two children were born, Janice and Roger. They farmed near Union Mills and in the New Sharon area for many years, until Arthur’s death in 1977. She operated a restaurant in Barnes City from 1960 to 1963. She also worked as a cashier at Fisher’s Market and was an assistant cook at the North Mahaska Schools for many years. She also worked at the New Sharon Senior Site.

She was a great cook and always wanted to feed you when you came to visit her. The family always loved her cooking and hospitality. You were always welcome in her home. She loved her children and grandchildren and always loved the holidays to spend time with them. She was a member of Harvest Community Fellowship Church and enjoyed attending Bible Study at Prairie Homes.

Opal’s memory will be honored by her two children, Janice (Francis) Vander Linden of New Sharon and Roger (Linda Foster) Van Baalen of New Sharon; four grandchildren, Mark (Margaret) Vander Linden of Pleasant Hill, CA, Diane (Guy Skinner) Vander Linden of Weaverville, N.C., Douglas (Tibe) Vander Linden of Muscatine, IA and Melissa Van Baalen of Castle Rock, CO; six great grandchildren, Christin Vander Linden, Jonathan Vander Linden, Matthew Vander Linden, Cattlin Johnson, Jake Vander Linden and Chad Vander Linden; two step grandchildren, Erin Freeborn and Dan Freeborn; several nieces and nephews.

Opal was preceded in death by her parents, Oliver and Maude Stutzman; her husband, Arthur Van Baalen; one brother, Glen Stutzman and two sisters, Lois Speas and Mildred Grant.