Mary Quam, 87
Under the bright light of a full moon Mary Quam passed from this life to another.
Mary Ann Sanem was born on March 13, 1931, (Yes it was a Friday the 13th) in Sheldon, IA. The good luck of Friday the 13th followed her through a happy childhood on the Hayes Family Farm near Archer, Iowa. She shared many happy days with her father, Edward Adam Sanem, mother, Irene (Hayes) Sanem and grandmother Ada Grundy Hayes. Adding to these happy days was a special present for her 7th birthday, a wire haired Terrier who she named Yipper. This led to a life time love of dogs. Mary graduated from Archer High School in 1948 with a class of 14; 7 boys and 7 girls which made a nice pairing for graduation ceremonies.
She attended Iowa State Teachers College (now University of Northern Iowa) graduating in December 1951 with a Bachelor’s degree in English and Library Science. Her first job was as circulation librarian at the Kendall Young Public Library in Webster City. She then decided she wanted to try her hand at teaching and taught high school English and supervised the high school library. She then decided it had to be one or the other, teaching or library work. She began her career at the Marshalltown Public Library in August 1953, a decision she never regretted. She worked at the adult circulation desk. She then became children’s librarian and completed her career as library director.
While eating at her favorite dining location, the Kresge lunch counter, she met her husband to be, local artist, Robert Quam. They were married February 24, 1956. Two sons were born to complete this union, Jeffrey Edward and Eric Obert.
Mary enjoyed being active in community organizations. She served as president of Woodbury, Williams Norris PTA, City PTA, P.E.O. chapter Lieutenant, Soroptimist, United Methodist Women of First United Methodist Church and Binford House Board. She attended numerous American Library Association and Iowa Library Association Conventions and served as children’s services chairman for Iowa Library Association. She also served on election boards for many years and was co-chair of Marshall County Democrats.
She is preceded in death by her husband Robert; son Jeffrey and her parents Edward and Irene.
Mary has requested that there would not be a structured memorial service, instead she would like her friends to go out to lunch and reminisce about her or donate some service time to their church or a charitable agency or simply take a walk in the cemetery. Friends are encouraged to make a monetary donation to their special charities or to Mary’s favorites, Binford House, Salvation Army or First United Methodist Church.