Andrea Esther Hanson, 98, died peacefully in her sleep on Monday, September 2, 2019, at Friendship Haven’s Simpson Health Center in Fort Dodge, Iowa. A celebration of life service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, September 7, 2019, at Friendship Haven (Celebration Center), 420 Kenyon Rd - Fort Dodge, with Rev. Jennifer Osheim-Owen officiating. There will be a visitation with the family one hour before the service. Interment will take place at North Lawn Cemetery in Fort Dodge. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Friendship Haven, First United Methodist Church of Fort Dodge, Otho United Methodist Church or the Fort Dodge Community Schools Foundation.
Andrea was born on October 6, 1920 on the family farm near Steamboat Rock and Eldora, Iowa, the daughter of Leslie and Dena (Eilers) Bear. At the age of 4 the family moved to Eldora for four years and then to Denver, Colorado for one year. The family returned to Iowa to live again on the farm. Andrea graduated from Eldora High School in May 1938 and then attended Iowa State Teachers College (now University of Northern Iowa) for two years. She taught in the elementary grades in Otho, Iowa, where she met her husband Don Hanson. They were married on April 6, 1942 and soon after he enlisted in the Army Air Corps. Andrea taught in Manly, Iowa for one year and in 1942 moved to Madison, Wisconsin and was employed in the U.S. Service Club at Truax Field. Later she moved back to Steamboat Rock to live with her parents for the duration of the war.
Upon her husband’s discharge from the Army in 1946 they moved to Otho to establish their home. In 1957 they moved to Fort Dodge with their three children. Andrea was an elementary school teacher in the Fort Dodge Community Schools for 26 years. She obtained a B.S. degree and additional graduate hours from Drake University.
Andrea is survived by her son Don (Geri) Hanson of Iowa City, IA, son Kurt (Debi) Hanson of Washington, IA, and daughter Marilyn Yoder of Kalona, IA. She also is survived by 9 grandchildren, 12 great grandchildren, and her sister Marylou (Frank) Rice of Ackley, IA.
Andrea was preceded in death by her husband Don Hanson in 2005, parents Leslie and Dena Bear, brother Edward Bear, brother John Bear and sister Ruth Fisher.
Andrea had many interests, including her family, church, school activities, reading, genealogy, traveling and crossword puzzles. She loved the days when she was a student and a teacher, and in her retirement kept close contact with her grandchildren’s school activities. Andrea volunteered at the Fort Dodge Trinity Regional Medical Center, the Fort Dodge Public Library, and was a guide at the Fort Museum for 14 years. She was a member of First United Methodist Church in Fort Dodge, Webster County School Personnel Association, National Education Association, Chapter AT of TTT, Chapter NJ of PEO, Maude Lauderdale Chapter of Questers, book clubs, and was a charter member of the American Association of University Women. Andrea was a very active member of her church and Church Women United where she served as an officer and on committees.