Eleanor (Elly) D. Fiala, 80, of Mason City, Iowa, passed away Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017, at Good Shepherd Health Center. Per her wishes, she was cremated. Graveside services will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 30, at Evergreen Cemetery in Clarion, Iowa, with the Rev. Bill Kem of the United Presbyterian Church officiating.
Memorials may be directed to Good Shepherd Inc., 302 Second St. NE, Mason City, IA 50401, or Hospice of North Iowa, 232 Second St. SE, Mason City, IA 50401.
Online condolences may be left for the family at www.majorericksonfuneralhome.com.
Eleanor was born Oct. 4, 1937, in Panora, Iowa, the daughter of John and Hazel (Whisler) French. She graduated from Clarion, Iowa, High School in 1955, having participated in activities as a wrestling and football cheerleader, and singing in the choir and a vocal sextet. She graduated from Mason City Hamilton Business School in 1956.
She married Gary Fisher in 1956 in Clarion. They had three children, Eugene Wayne, Michael John and Suzanne Darlene.
Graduating Magna Cum Laude from Mount Mercy College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in 1977, Eleanor worked for Coe College until April 1978. She then joined the Social Security Administration in Ottumwa, Iowa, as a claims representative. She transferred to Mason City in 1981 and remained in the Social Security Administration until her retirement in April 2001. She enjoyed her work and received numerous cash and achievement awards. She was involved with many activities relating to the Social Security Administration.
Eleanor married Wesley R. Fiala on July 1, 1983, at their acreage near Mason City. They took a honeymoon trip on their Honda Goldwing to Canada, and after that traveled each summer on the Goldwing throughout the United States and Canada. Their longest trip was 9,000 miles and five weeks to Alaska. Many international trips were taken over the years, including Russia, Singapore, Hawaii, the UK, Switzerland, Belgium, Germany and France.
Following her retirement in 2001 from the Social Security Administration, Eleanor volunteered at Hoover Elementary School in Mason City until 2014. There, she worked with elementary students, helping them increase their math and reading skills. She very much enjoyed working with the Hoover students and staff. In 2016, Elly served as an RSVP Reading Program volunteer at West Fork Elementary School in Rockwell, Iowa.
Eleanor was a member of the board of directors of the Government Employees Credit Union for 16 years. She chaired the audit committee for nine years and then served for four years as board chairman. She played a prominent role in the organization and development of the CENT Credit Union.
A sports enthusiast, she was a faithful fan of the Iowa Hawkeyes, the Minnesota Vikings, the Minnesota Twins and, later, the Iowa State Cyclones. A jazz music fan, she enthusiastically supported her nephew, Keith Fiala, in his professional career as a jazz trumpet musician.
Eleanor is survived by her husband, Wes Fiala, of Mason City; son, Eugene (Crystal) Fisher, Atkins, Iowa; son, Michael (Jean) Fisher, Walford, Iowa; daughter, Suzanne (Michael) Shepherd, Wayland, Iowa; her grandchildren, Ryan (Kim) Fisher, Danielle Fisher, Timothy Fisher, Emily (Shawn) Nuetzman, Colin (Jenny) Shepherd and Spencer (Hannah) Shepherd; her great-grandchildren, Brayden, Aidan, Brooks and Dierks Fisher and Harper and Hadley Nuetzman; her brothers, Bill (Marilyn) French, Covington, La., and Doug (Connie) French, Forest City, Iowa.
Eleanor was preceded in death by her parents and stepfather.
Arrangements by Major Erickson Funeral Home & Crematory, 111 N. Pennsylvania Ave., Mason City, IA 50401; (641) 423-0924. www.majorericksonfuneralhome.com