Bea Marie Koch passed away peacefully Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020.
Bea was born Aug. 11, 1928, on the Molland family farm in West Prairie, to Oscar and Myrtle (Zitzner) Molland. She was baptized and confirmed in the North West Prairie Lutheran Church. Bea was a graduate of Viroqua High School and the Vernon County Teachers College and subsequently taught elementary school.
Bea married Owen Levi Koch of Viola, Dec. 9, 1947, and remained his faithful partner until his passing Oct. 15, 2012. Bea and Owen together operated one of the most successful dairy farms in Southern Wisconsin, for over 40 years and were frequently recognized for their Holstein cattle. Following the sale of their farm and beloved Holsteins, Bea and Owen relocated to the Viroqua-Westby area. Following retirement from farming, Bea worked at Walmart for 27 years and formed many enduring relationships. Walmart was in some ways her “happy place.”
Bea was a thoughtful, humble and elegant woman, who was well known for her chocolate fudge, pineapple upside down cake and various other sweets. She loved desserts and ice cream bars and never turned down a good strong cup of black coffee. A lover of “all things to do with shopping,” Bea was always conscientious and wanted to do the right thing. Bea had many friends from her days on the farm and card clubs, to her Oak Knoll and Walmart friends and Maplewood/Bethel Oaks.
Surviving Bea are her three children, Randy (Heidi) of Gardnerville, Nev., Patricia (Dennis) Sobik of Merritt Island, Fla., and David (Julie) of Wayzata, Minn. Further surviving are six grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; a brother, Sigurd (Cinda) Molland; two sisters, Joan Hayhurst and Emma (John) Oleski.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Owen; parents, Oscar and Myrtle; brothers, Oscar and Peter; as well as sisters, Ernestine Koch, Danna Helgerson and Kathryn Nederloe.
The family would like to thank the staff at Maplewood Terrace, Bethel Oaks, and the Bland Bekkedal Hospice House, for their tender loving care of Bea.
A memorial service and celebration of life will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 22, at the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 504 South Main St., in Viroqua. Pastor Yvonne Marshall will officiate. A visitation will be held starting at 9:30 a.m. prior to the service at the church. A reception and lunch will be served at the church following the service. A private burial will be held for the family at the Sylvan Cemetery following the church lunch.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Bethel Oaks Memory Care or to the Bland Bekkedal Hospice House (c/o Vernon Memorial Hospice Program).
Online condolences may be offered at www.vossfh.com. The Vosseteig-Larson Funeral Home, 123 W. Decker, in Viroqua is serving the family, (608) 637-2100.