Schakel was born on a farm in rural Prairie City and graduated from Monroe High School in 1928. She attended Drake University for one year before dropping out to marry Paul Schakel. The two were together for nearly 72 years before he passed away. They lived on a farm in Monroe.
Though she is deaf today, her children Jane Renaud and Russell Schakel said she spent most of her life as a housewife. She raised two boys and a girl. One of her sons is deceased.
“She worked hard, I know that,” Russell Schakel said. She passed her time farming, gardening and sewing.
“We milked a lot of cows,” Renaud said.
Schakel has been at Park Lane Village for three years. Before moving there, she continued to mow her own yard and kept her own house spotless.
Last, but certainly not least, is Roberts, who has shared her story with the Journal-Express in the past. She was born and raised in Marion County. Dr. Bob Mulkey delivered her.
Roberts maintains a healthy interest in politics, has always taken this newspaper and has traced her ancestry back to 1605 in Ireland. On politics, she believes that “everybody should vote or keep their mouths shut.”
Roberts is always reading. She remains shy about talking about herself because she thinks it will sound like bragging. She has always loved fishing, camping, traveling and learning as much as she can. Prior to being “stuck in a wheelchair,” she did a lot more. That still does not stop her from making the most of every day.
“I just enjoy life,” Roberts said.