Irene Caffrey, 98, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, passed away Friday, Feb. 12, 2021, in her home, cared for by her daughter, Susan Neal, and son and daughter-in-law, Bob and Diane Caffrey.
Irene was born April 17, 1922, disputing her birth certificate of 1921 by authority of her oldest sister, Tonna, and so celebrated every birthday by that date.
Irene was born in a sod house in
Powder River County, Mont., (Homestead Territory), to Vasile P. and Dora Balaban. Her parents emigrated from Russia to the United States in 1913 and settled in North Dakota. In 1916, the family moved to Montana to homestead a tract of land and stayed until 1924, returning to North Dakota. In 1930, the family moved to Iowa to the Mason City area and eventually settled on a farm outside of Ventura, Iowa. Irene graduated from Ventura High School in 1939. On April 20, 1947, she married Alfred N. Caffrey. The couple farmed south of Clear Lake until January of 1956 at which time they moved to Cedar Rapids to begin their own business; Cafri Sales Tupperware Distributors. Irene started selling Tupperware in 1954 in Clear Lake and they retired from their Distributorship in February 1981.
Irene is survived by her children: son, Bob (Diane) Caffrey, and daughter, Susan Neal; grandsons, Tyson (Bria) Caffrey and Andrew Caffrey; great-grandson, Luca Jean Caffrey; and sister, Mary Halberstadt. She is also survived and lovingly remembered by many nieces and nephews; step-grandchildren, Matt (Kellie) Stallman and Jamie (Brian) Shields; and step-great-grandsons, Harrison, Leo, Fenix and Jett.
She was preceded in death by her parents and beloved husband; son-in-law, Bob Neal; brothers, Pete and Mike Balaban; and sisters, Tonna Stoynoff, Elena Balaban and Helen Anderson.
The family would like to thank the staff of Mercy Hospice for their care, assistance and support.
In accordance with her wishes, there will be no services. Interment will be held at Cedar Memorial Park Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations/memorials may be sent to Habitat For Humanity or the Salvation Army.