Velma Esther (Hardisty) Cox of Manitowoc WI (formerly from Corning, Iowa) peacefully passed away at the Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice on Feb 28, 2023 at the age of 102 years and 345 days. Funeral Services will be 10:30 A.M., Saturday, March 11, 2023 at the Corning United Methodist Church, Corning, Iowa, with Rev. LeAnn Robine officiating. Pearson Family Funeral Service & Cremation Center is in charge of arrangements. Burial will be in the Prairie Rose Cemetery, rural Adams County, Iowa. The family will greet friends and family on Friday, March 10, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Pearson Family Funeral Service & Cremation Center, 701 7th St., Corning, Iowa. . Memorials may be given to the Corning United Methodist Church, 901 Nodaway St., Corning, Iowa. Memories and condolences may be shared online at www.pearsonfuneralhomes.com.
Velma was born on March 20th 1920 near Carbon, Iowa. She was the oldest daughter of the late Solomon Lee Hardisty and Elizabeth Keziah (Fudge) Hardisty. It was there on her parent’s farm that Velma learned the importance of hard work and a strong faith in God. In 1927 scarlet fever struck her family. Velma was hit the hardest and was left with hearing in only one ear and a badly damaged heart. She grew up and attended country schools around Corning Iowa. She did not attend high school because she had to stay home and take care of her six younger brothers and sisters. On June 7th 1941 Velma married Robert Burton (Bob) Cox of Corning, Iowa. Bob and Velma lived on a farm 4 miles east of Corning. Together they raised three wonderful children, and were blessed with four grandchildren and one great granddaughter. Bob and Velma celebrated 67 years of marriage.
Velma was an active member of the Corning United Methodist Church and Women’s Groups, and she taught Sunday School for many years. Her faith was very important to her and she demonstrated that in the way that she treated people and lived her life. On the farm Velma always had a huge vegetable garden and many flowers. In 1969 they started an electric fence bracket business, The Defender Company. Retiring in 1985, they moved to their new passive solar home in Corning. In 1986 she received a Cochlear Implant in her right ear. She was the second person in Nebraska to receive such a device. It allowed her to hear spoken speech both in person and on the telephone. She was the primary caregiver for her husband after he had many strokes. In 2006 when she could no longer take care of him, they moved to Manitowoc, WI to be near their daughter Arlene. Velma moved to an independent living apartment at Felician Village and Bob moved to the adjoining nursing home, St. Mary’s. He preceded her in death on February 19, 2009. Arlene was her mom’s caregiver even through Covid. After Robert’s passing, Velma started doing beadwork. She loved stringing beads on wire and shaping them into flowers and animals. In 2018 she appeared in a feature segment on PBS’s “Wisconsin Life”. She was profoundly hearing impaired but that didn’t keep her from doing the things she loved. Her hobbies were gardening, reading, crocheting, sewing, crafts and beadwork. Velma embraced technology. She received her first computer at the age of 65. She used it to talk face to face with her family. She also took digital pictures and shared them via email with family and friends. Being hearing impaired, the speech to text features appealed to her. In September of 2022, Velma fell and was no longer able to stay in independent living and moved to River Woods Place. Velma lived a very active life up until her death. She participated in all activities at assisted living. She loved the Bingo, exercise classes, games (like bean bag toss), and her favorite activity was the bus trips.
Velma was preceded in death by her parents, all 7 siblings, husband Robert and daughter-in-law Janis.
Left to cherish Velma’s memory are her three children: Ronald of Aurora, CO, Arlene Kuehnle (John) of Manitowoc, WI and Roger (Gayle) of Spring Lake, MI; her grandchildren Raina Cox (Larry Brackney) of Venice, FL, Randall of Aurora Co, Russell of Kingman Az, and Anna of Spring Lake MI; great granddaughter Nola Cox of Venice FL.