Virginia Wille


November 8, 2011 - 12:00 AM

Virginia Mae Wille, 94, of Iola died Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011, at Allen County Hospital in Iola.
She was born Jan. 20, 1917, in Yates Center, to Everett and Amy (Rockwell) Shaefer. She grew up in Yates Center and graduated from Yates Center High School.
She attended business college in Topeka before she married Jerome “Jerry” Wille on June 7, 1938, in Topeka. They made their home in Iola, Great Bend, and Salina before returning to Iola in 1960. He died on March 24, 1975.
Virginia started working at Sigg & Sanders Greenhouse in Iola. She bought the business and moved it to the north side of the Iola square and operated it as Virginia’s Flowers. She sold the flower shop and opened a restaurant in Piqua called Virginia’s Sophisticated Chicken. She later sold it and ran Wille Retail Liquor. In her later years, she worked at Iola Pharmacy, Classy Attic and as a representative for Great Plains Credit Union until she was 87.
She was a member of St. John’s Catholic Church and Altar Society in Iola and traveled to Belize, Central America, on a mission trip with the church when she was in her 70s. Virginia was active in the Allen County Democrats and the state Democratic organization serving as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention. She was also active in the local, state and national Business and Professional Women’s organization and Daughters of the American Revolution.
She is survived by three daughters, Judy Willett and her husband, Pete, Topeka, Sandy Gilbertson and her husband, Bob, Antioch, Ill., and Cathy Lynch and her husband, Marvin, Iola; two daughters-in-law, Eileen Wille, Moran, and Martha Wille, Iola; 11 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandson.
She was preceded in death by two sons, Michael R. “Mike” in 1994 and Jerome J. “Jody” Jr. in 2011; a daughter, Michelle R. “Missy” Bolen in 1995, a sister, Frances Rae Smith, grandson, James Lynch, and a great-grandson, Hunter Shaw.
Visitation will be from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Waugh-Yokum & Friskel Memorial Chapel in Iola.
Parish Rosary will be recited at 10 a.m. Friday followed by Mass at 10:30 a.m., both at St. John’s Catholic Church in Iola. The Rev. Robert B. Wachter will officiate. Burial will be in St. Martin’s Catholic Cemetery in Piqua.
Memorials to Virginia M. Wille Allen County Community College Scholarship Fund, Allen County Community Foundation New Hospital Campaign or St. John’s Catholic Church may be left at the funeral home. Online condolences for the family may be left at

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