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Nancy J. Bires

Cedar Rapids

Nancy J. Bires, 95, was born Dec. 24, 1923, in LaFayette, Ind., moving to Racine, Wis., with her family in 1925, where she was raised by her parents, Frank J. Hoffman (noted Racine architect) and Marie Hoffman. She passed on Nov. 27, 2019.
Nancy attended Horlick High School and entered Saint Mary's of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind., in 1941. She graduated from Marquette University with her degree in nursing in 1946, and later added a teaching certificate from University of Wisconsin-Madison. Nancy worked as an R.N. in various assignments, including as a visiting nurse for J.I. Case Co.
As a girl, she recalled the 1933 Racine bank holdup by John Dillinger, watching the robbery unfold from her father's office building window. She also remembered her late father introducing her to Frank Lloyd Wright during construction of the S.C. Johnson headquarters building. She contributed to the WWII effort as a riveter for the production of military airplane wings.
Nancy met and wed Joseph E. Bires in 1948 in Racine, moving to Madison to live and raise their family. She will be missed deeply by her many friends and family, especially by her children, Mary Pat, Jane and James, and their families.
Nancy's greatest joy was her family. She was exceptionally kind, thoughtful and caring, and beloved. In addition to teaching herself to sew and knit, Nancy became an expert in the art of rug-hooking, joining a Madison club chapter in 1976, before serving as club president. She was passionate about nature, birds and gardening.
Mass of Christian Burial: 10 a.m. Monday, Dec. 2, 2019, at All Saints Catholic Church, Cedar Rapids, with visitation beginning at 9 a.m. Committal: noon Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019, at Resurrection Catholic Cemetery, Madison, Wis. Services provided by Stewart Baxter Funeral & Memorial Services, Cedar Rapids.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the charity of your choice.
Please share your support and memories with Nancy's family on her tribute wall at www.stewartbaxter.com under obituaries.
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