Thelma Kruse

Thelma J. Kruse, 92, of Hillsboro, Iowa, passed away at 11:59 a.m. Wednesday, December 13, 2023, at her home.

She was born on October 13, 1931, in Salem, Iowa, the daughter of Bernard and Cecilia (Moeller) Stukerjurgen. On October 2, 1954, she married Sylvester Kruse at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Houghton.

Survivors include her husband: Sylvester; four children: Edward (Patty) Kruse of Hillsboro, LeAnn (Ben) Lund of Johnston, LouAnn (Gary) Nichting of Mt. Pleasant, and JoAnn (Joe) Adam of Fairfield; eleven grandchildren; twenty eight great grandchildren; three great-great grandchildren; two brothers: Ron (Carol) Stukerjurgen of Houghton and Leroy (Carrol) Stukerjurgen of Sun City, Arizona; three sisters: Justine (Ray) Conrad of Tempe, Arizona, Agatha Rudy of Solon, and Lucille Damhorst of Carbon Cliff, Illinois. Also surviving are several nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents and brothers: Omer and Don Stukerjurgen.

Thelma was a member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, the American Legion Auxiliary, Circle Eight Square Dance Club, and a euchre card club. She tended to the flower gardens at St. John’s Catholic Church for thirty-five years, she enjoyed her flowers, gardening, canning, square dancing, and playing cards.

A visitation will be held from 12:00 noon to 6:00 p.m. Monday, December 18, 2023, at St. John’s Catholic Church in Houghton, where the family will receive friends from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. A parish rosary will be recited at 3:30 p.m. and a Christian wake service will be held at 5:30 p.m.

A Mass of Christian burial will be held at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, December 19, 2023, at St. John’s Catholic Church in Houghton with Father Dan Dorau as celebrant.

A memorial has been established in her memory for St. John’s Catholic Church or St. John’s Cemetery.

Schmitz Funeral Home of West Point is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be made to the family at