Opal Prough Shumaker, 97, passed peacefully from this life surrounded by her loving family on Wednesday, December 26, 2012 at Klein Center in Burlington. She was born in Adair County, MO, and lived in that area her entire life, until her husband’s death in January 2006 when she moved to Fort Madison, IA to be near her son. Born August 2, 1915, she was the oldest of three children born to Amzie and Verna (Parrish) Prough. She was only three years old when her father died, forcing her mother to move her young family in with their grandparents where a difficult farm life during the depression followed. She made it through the 8th grade before she was forced to leave home to go to work caring for the elderly, other families, their homes and farm animals. At the age of 24, she became a single mother who faced the hardships that brought during those days. With the help of her mother, brother and other family members, she raised her son and he became the most important thing in her life to the very end.
She continued her work until October 1954 when she married Roy Shumaker, and then became a homemaker. She enjoyed gardening and every year would grow a garden large enough to provide produce to all of her neighbors and friends, in addition to filling her cellar with canned goods. Their farm in Macon, MO, became a retreat for her family and friends and many fun-filled days were spent there, with her enjoying every minute.
Opal not only adored her son, but also her two granddaughters who spent summer days with her on the farm throughout their childhoods and beyond. She was pure of heart, kind, loving, and faithful and never complained about anything- except for the cold weather. Her spirit will live on in those who loved her. She is survived by her son, LaVern Prough of Fort Madison, and her granddaughters, Kim (Ray) Crutcher and Deb (Doug) Bergquist, both of Wever. Preceding her in death besides her husband were her parents and two brothers, Edwin and Olen Prough.
Visitation will be held from 10:00 - 11:00 am Saturday, December 29, 2012 at the Barr Memorial Chapel. The funeral for Opal will begin at 11:00 am Saturday, December 29, 2012 at the Barr Memorial Chapel, Fort Madison, Iowa, with Chaplain Dave Plooster officiating. Burial will be at Oakland Cemetery, Fort Madison, Iowa. Memorial contributions have been established for PAWS Animal Shelter. Contributions may be made at the Barr Memorial Chapel.