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Janet Mitchell-Hotka
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Cedar Rapids

Janet (Jan) Louise
Mitchell-Hotka, 61, of Cedar Rapids, completed her final journey to be with her Lord and Savior on Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016, following a two-year courageous battle with pancreatic cancer. Friends may visit with the family at Stonebridge church on Friday from 3 to 8 p.m. and on Saturday after 10 a.m. Burial is set for Saturday at 9 a.m. at Czech National Cemetery. Celebration of Life service: Saturday at 11 a.m. at Stonebridge Church by Pastor Randy Scheil. Teahen Funeral Home is serving the family.
Jan is survived by her husband, Dennis Hotka; five children, Justin (Megan) Mitchell and James (Melissa) Mitchell, both of Cedar Rapids, Julie Mitchell of Los Angeles, and Jonathan (Natalia) Mitchell and Elizabeth Hotka, both of Cedar Rapids; six grandchildren, Jozlynn, Jaxon, Jase, Landyn, Solomon and Lauryn and one on the way; and father-in-law, Harold Mitchell of Cedar Rapids.
She was preceded in death by her parents; grandparents, Frank and Laurine Leeney and William and Eleanor Fuhrmeister; and grandbaby, Mitchell.
Jan entered this world on Dec. 30, 1954, the daughter of Theodore and Marlene (Leeney) Fuhrmeister. Although she was born in Iowa City, Cedar Rapids was always Jan's home. She graduated from Jefferson High School, Class of 1973, and the University of Northern Iowa, Class of 1977, with a degree in education and the Governor's Award for academic excellence. She married Dennis Hotka on June 29, 1996, in Cedar Rapids. She had previously been married to Jeffrey Mitchell. Jan taught for five years at St. Matthew and St. Jude Catholic Schools before deciding to open a day care center in her home. For over 34 years, she welcomed children into her home and her life. Jan proudly announced that she potty-trained half of Cedar Rapids!
Jan believed that one of the special gifts of this world was relationships and she invested in people. Jan was an active member of Stonebridge Church and offered a listening ear to all who needed comfort. She was frequently spotted driving around Cedar Rapids in a van full of singing children or at Morgan Creek Park deep in conversation as she walked through the arboretum.
Although Jan accomplished many goals during her life, including her childhood dream of owning a horse and piano, the achievement she held most dear was her family. Jan was her children and grandchildren's biggest fan. The smell of fresh baked cookies daily invited her family to sit in the kitchen and discuss life. She cheered the loudest for 28x at local race tracks and was the perpetual homeroom mom at school. Jan taught her family to love as deeply as she did.
Jan's patient and selfless nature was life-changing to all who knew her. She brought joy to countless children, was a constant source of inspiration and strength for her family, and never tired of serving the Lord. Her legacy was love and in love she will always be remembered.
Instead of flowers, memorials may be directed to the family.
Online condolences may be left at

Posted on Friday, 19 August 2016