Sharon Lea (Blaisdell) Schroeder, who took tremendous pride in her children and grandchildren,
delighted in sending handwritten letters to pen pals overseas, and never met a cat she didn’t like,
passed away Saturday, April 13, 2019, after a short illness. She was 82.
Sharon was born Feb. 18, 1937, in Oelwein, Iowa, to Earl Robert and Ramona Elisa (McAtee)
Blaisdell. She was the oldest of three children; one of her brothers, Robert, died when he was an
infant, and the other, James Robert, died in January 1972.
Sharon grew up in Oelwein and graduated from Oelwein High School in 1955. She married M.E.
(Smokey) Schroeder in March 1958, and they had two daughters, Lorilei Wilson, born in 1961,
and Jill Renee Wunder, born in 1971. The couple later divorced.
As she raised her daughters, Sharon held a number of jobs that reflected her gift for customer
service, her love of children, her passion for social services, and her affection for animals. In the
1960s, Sharon worked as a bridal consultant for Fashionaire. She sold Avon, serving as an Avon
representative for 40 years, and was a longtime Welcome Wagon representative, presenting new
residents, engaged women, and new parents with gifts on behalf of community businesses. Over
the years, Sharon also worked for LOVE-N-CARE, a not-for-profit Christian daycare center run
by the Church of Christ, Eastside; Oelwein Kitchen Cupboard, where she worked for 26 years;
and First Baptist Church in Oelwein, where she held the position of financial secretary for more
than 26 years. Sharon was a hard worker and served with selflessness and compassion.
Sharon also was a longtime volunteer for numerous organizations, including Oelwein
Community Schools, Girl Scouts, United Way, First Baptist Church, American Field Service, the
Oelwein High School Class of 1955 reunion committee, and the American Red Cross Blood
Sharon delighted in her daughters and her two grandchildren, and she loved to show off photos
of them to her friends, coworkers, and customers. Sharon also was very artistic, a trait she passed
down to her granddaughter. She enjoyed sewing and also had a passion for designing handmade
cards, which she sent to pen pals. She corresponded with a pen pal from New Zealand, Joy, for
more than 30 years, and their friendship was so deep, her daughters came to think of the pen pal
as an aunt. Later, she corresponded with pen pals from Japan and Holland.
Sharon was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers, and, most recently, her cat Velcro.
She is survived by her daughters, Lorilei (Stewart) Wilson and Jill Renee (Dale Seward II)
Wunder; two grandchildren, Cassondra Noel Wunder and Andrew Robert Lynn (Amber Estes)
Wunder; and her cat Anna.
A memorial service will be held Monday, May 6, 2019, at First Baptist Church, 31 1st Ave. N.E., Oelwein. Visitation will begin at 10 a.m., and the memorial service will begin at 11 a.m. A luncheon will follow the service.
Those attending the memorial service are invited to bring donations for the Oelwein Kitchen
Cupboard. Memorials in honor of Sharon also may be sent to the Oelwein Kitchen Cupboard or
the Otter Creek Animal Shelter, Hazleton.
The Geilenfeld Funeral Home in Oelwein is assisting the family. For condolences, please visit www.geilenfeld fh.com.