Lona Marie Milligan (Stolz), 73
Lona Marie Milligan (Stolz), 73, of West Des Moines, passed away after a brief fight with cancer on Valentine’s Day evening, Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021 with her loving husband of 49-years by her side.
A Celebration of Life will be held at Hamilton’s on Westown Parkway in West Des Moines on Sunday, February 28th from 1-4 p.m. The family requests that masks be worn.
Loni was born January 21, 1948, in New Hampton, Iowa to Avalt and Janice (Kelly) Stolz; the proud oldest of five children. Loni graduated from New Hampton High School in 1966, studied at UNI, then headed to Des Moines to pursue her career. She eventually met Michael Milligan and the two married on Thanksgiving weekend, 1971. Together with their two children Michael and Shawn they moved around the state in pursuit of Mike’s career in education. Loni had various jobs during her career, her favorite as a Special Education Associate. She loved the kids and they certainly responded to her caring and positive nature. Loni and Mike retired to West Des Moines to be close to their children and grandchildren and had a wonderful time attending all the grandkids’ activities.
Loni was a superb designer and was happiest when decorating her home, especially for the holidays when her six grandchildren would converge upon her home in pursuit of cookies and candy. She was a fabulous cook and many of her specialties were always in demand at family get togethers. She also loved collecting sea-shells and anything “beauteous” she could drape around the house. She followed politics (Democratic), the weather, and The Bold and the Beautiful. A voracious reader of books and magazines; there was almost nothing in history or present-day popular culture that Loni didn’t know something about. She would often give the doctor tips she gleaned from Dr. Oz or Redbook magazine. Loni loved gardening and every spring would have beautiful wild flower gardens and many flower pots around the house.
Loni will be deeply missed by her husband Michael and their children, Mike (wife Megan, children Flynn, Roan, and Liam) and Shawn Russell (husband Jason, children Chanse, Quinn, and Kiley). She also leaves behind her brothers, Dennis Stolz and David Stolz (wife Chris); sister, Laura Jo Pavlovec (husband Rex); and brother-in-law, Roger Harrington. She is also survived by several cousins, nieces and nephews, and friends.
Loni was preceded in death by her parents, sister Mary Harrington, sisters-in-law Laura Stolz and Nancy Milligan, grandparents Vern and Earl Kelly, and Emma and Richard Stolz.
The family would like to say a very special thank you to the nurses and staff of Wesley Life Hospice as well as the family and friends who supported us through Loni’s brief but courageous fight with cancer. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the charity of your choice or to the family to be distributed at a later date.