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Carmelita "Carm" Portz (nee Kirk)


Carmelita "Carm" Portz (nee Kirk) died peacefully Monday morning, Aug. 27, 2018, at the Maquoketa Care Center in Maquoketa, Iowa, at the age of 100.
She is survived by her eight children, Eugene (Leanne Spacek) Portz, Judy Portz, Susan Stamats, Victoria Wallace, Dianne Brandt, Jeffery (Julie) Portz, Randy Portz and Daniel Portz; 13 grandchildren, 23
great-grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren; as well as a brother and sisters, Rita Struble, Ann Phillips, Mary Wathier, Charles Kirk and Pat Even. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edward Portz; parents, John and Edna Kirk; and brothers and sisters, Delbert Kirk, Dorothy Tralau, Margaret Portz, Francis Kirk, Johnny Kirk, Bertram Kirk, James Kirk and Loren Kirk.
Carm was born on a farm near Otter Creek, Iowa, on May 19, 1918, the third of 14 children, and attended school at St. Lawrence Catholic School in Otter Creek. She married Edward Portz on Jan. 14, 1941, and after living in several different places, moved to Andrew, Iowa, in 1943, where they made their long-term home and where she resided for almost 75 years until she moved to the Maquoketa Care Center during the later stages of her life.
In addition to being a homemaker, Carm worked at the Fishing Tackle in Maquoketa, Iowa, was a playground supervisor at the Andrew Community School, and cleaned the rectory at St. John's Catholic Church and the Andrew Savings Bank in Andrew, Iowa.
Carm was a self-taught seamstress, making clothing for her growing family as well as garments for St. John's Catholic Church. She made many Barbie and American Girl doll clothes and crocheted afghans, hats, gloves, scarves and baby blankets for family, friends and the less-advantaged.
Throughout the years, she was a gardener and canner, helping to feed her large family.
She was an avid baseball fan and often attended baseball games when her sons played; she enjoyed the reputation of ringing a cowbell at their games. In her later years she enjoyed watching golf.
She was supportive of her family and encouraged them to pursue their life ambitions. Her greatest joys in life were her children, and she had a special spot in her heart for her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Carm was a lifelong Catholic and her faith was a very important part of her life and a great comfort to her.
Her family recently held a 100-year birthday party for her at the Andrew Cafe that was well attended by family and local residents.
A wake will be held on Sunday, Sept. 2, 2018, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Lahey-Dawson Funeral home in Maquoketa, Iowa. A funeral mass is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 3, 2018, at 10 a.m. at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Maquoketa, Iowa, with interment in the Andrew Cemetery in Andrew, Iowa, to follow.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to her family in her honor.
Condolences can be sent to www.laheys.com
The family would like to thank the caregivers at the Maquoketa Care Center for their efforts to care for Carm during the final years of her life.