June Zella Orr, 99, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, formerly of Aurora, Ill., passed from this life on Tuesday, July 28, 2020, at Cottage Grove Place in Cedar Rapids. In agreement with June's wishes, cremation has taken place and her cremated remains will be divided into two parts which will be interred at two separate places. The first memorial graveside service will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, July 31, at Golden Cemetery in rural Ryan, Iowa, with the Rev. Melanie VanWeelden officiating. The second memorial graveside service will be held at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 5, at Garden of the Saints Memorial Garden located at New England Congregational Church, 406 W. Galena Blvd., Aurora, Ill., with the Rev. Gary McCann officiating. Murdoch Funeral Home & Cremation Service in Marion is assisting the family with arrangements and services in Iowa.
June was born June 9, 1921, in Delaware County, Iowa, one of five children to Edmund C. and Edith B. (Haigh) Orr. She was a 1938 graduate of Buck Creek High School and attended both Lenox College in Hopkinton, Iowa, and Coe College in Cedar Rapids. In 1943, June graduated from Iowa Teachers College in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
For her first job, June taught business and coached basketball at Clemons Grove High School in Clemons, Iowa. While teaching in Clemons, June met her future lifelong friend, business partner and love of her life, Helen A. Brackney. Together, they ran the Brackney's family grocery store in Clemons until they sold it in 1954. At that time, June and Helen moved to Aurora, where they co-owned and operated the Dairy Queen on Lake Street until 1970. June always said, "Those were wonderful years, filled with great memories of families and friends we really came to know and love. It kept us very busy and sometimes we'd work 16-hour days, but it was all worth it. It was one of the happiest times in our lives."
In 1971, June started a new chapter in her life, becoming a Realtor selling real estate for Realty Executives, formerly known as Fair and Co. Realtors, for 27 years, retiring at the age of 77. June had also earned her Realtor broker's license in 1973. For several years, she had sold more than a million dollars of real estate in a year, which qualified her to be an elite life member of a prestige "Million-Dollar Club of Illinois Association of Realtors."
June was a member of the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Cedar Rapids; New England Congregational Church in Aurora, where she served as deacon, trustee, treasurer and cabinet; Zonta International Service Club of Aurora for 44 years, of which she served as director of many of their committees; and the Aurora Women's Club for over 25 years.
After retiring, June loved spending time with family and friends. She also loved to golf and was a member of the Par-Pals Ladies Golf Club in Aurora. June also spent a lot of her time with her goddaughters, Danielle and Rachael, whom she loved very much. She will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved her.
She is survived and lovingly remembered by numerous nieces and nephews, including Maxine R. Heath of Cedar Rapids and Dennis A. Orr of Coggon, Iowa; dear friends and former neighbors, Rob and Shelly Gorder of Batavia, Ill.; and her two special goddaughters, Danielle Gorder and Rachael Gorder, both of Chicago.
June was preceded in death by her parents; lifelong friend, Helen A. Brackney; two sisters, Emily (Marion) Marolf and Donna (Frank Day) Welterlen; and two brothers, Joseph (Dee Wasia) Orr and Frank (Marie) Orr.
In lieu of flowers, June had respectfully requested that any memorial contributions be made in her memory to Golden Cemetery Association, c/o Dennis Orr, 3257 210th Ave., Coggon, IA 52218.
Please share a memory of June at www.murdochfuneralhome.com under obituaries.