Lana Kaye (Sutter) Schaefer passed away on April 2, 2023, from bad Fugu. A funeral service will be held 11:30 a.m., Tuesday, April 11, 2023, at St. Peter Lutheran Church, 502 2nd St S, Rockwell with Pastor Sandy Cannon officiating. Interment will be held in St. Peter Lutheran Cemetery, Coulter. The service will livestreamed on the Major Erickson Funeral Home Facebook page. A visitation will be held on Monday, April 10, 2023, from 4-6 p.m., at Major Erickson Funeral Home, 111 North Pennsylvania. In lieu of flowers memorials may be directed may be directed to Emma and Coles college funds.
Lana was born on February 7, 1952, in Forest City, Iowa to Nyals and Judy (Hope) Sutter.
While pregnant with Lana, Judy had to have an emergency appendectomy. While there were no complications to the pregnancy, Lana was born a healthy little girl with dainty ears. But, let’s be honest here, Lana was never “quite right”. Maybe it was the anesthesia. Yet, we will never know.
Not long after Lana’s birth the Sutter Family loaded up and moved to the Progressive Community of Latimer, Iowa. It was the halfway point between Forest City and Ames. Nyals and Judy opened Sutter’s Barber and Beauty and Nyals was a bus driver for many years.
Lana was a 1970 graduate of CAL Community Schools. She lettered 4 years on the varsity softball and basketball teams. After graduation, Lana moved to Mason City to explore a career in Nursing at NIACC. Lana loved her time living at the Y where she met lifelong friends, some who eventually became colleagues at work. Lana was president of her nursing class, not once, but twice! Her gift of gab and quick leadership was appreciated by many.
Fate has a funny way of hitting you in the face. Lana was set up on a chance meeting with a guy she had already taken care of in the hospital, she was smitten.
Lana and Allan (Butch) Schaefer were united in marriage in Coulter, Iowa on April 2, 1975 by her favorite (and only) brother, Gary. It snowed 4 inches that day and it was Nyals birthday. It was total chaos for everyone involved.
Lana worked at Good Shepherd Health Center in Mason City after the wedding and eventually left to be part of North Iowa Medical Center in 1979.
August 23, 1976, is a day to remember. Lana and Butch welcomed a 13 lb. 11 oz., 23.5 in baby girl into the world It took Butch and the delivery nurse to push on Lana’s stomach to get the baby out.
They named her Sara Judith. Sara held the record for the largest baby born at Mercy in Mason City for many years. Butch always said Sara should have been twin boys. Yet Sara was big enough to be twins. What a surprise she was!
Butch, Lana and Sara lived outside of Rockwell, Iowa for 7 years when they decided to move into town.
Life never goes the way you want it to. Things change and sometimes too much of, SO MUCH heartache. Lana and Butch divorced in 1990. It wasn’t because there wasn’t love. There was ALWAYS love between them and they remained friends and supported Sara together.
In 1990, Lana left NIMC and went to Ask A Nurse. Her calming voice met you when you called in for medical advice and/or treatments. Lana also started a side hustle Mercy Home Care.
Eventually, her side hustle became a full-time job. She was Home Care nurse visiting homebound individuals, eventually becoming a Clinical Team Leader and then Team Lead to the renegade IV Nurses.
In 1995, Lana was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s B Cell Lymphoma. She fought it with tenacity and grace and looked like Mr. Clean during her treatments. Sara paled on her first time she saw her without hair, but eventually got used to it.
Due to health complications, Lana eventually had to take early retirement in 2007, yet that really didn’t slow her down. Not one to sit still, Lana took to volunteering at KCMR as an afternoon announcer. She was active in Community Theater and Meals on Wheels.
In 2008, Sara was united in marriage to Matthew Brighton and Lana gained another son to love. Speaking of kids, Lana may have given birth to one, but she had many kids. Her Cody boys: Jason, Jeremy and Dion, Elizabeth Heuer and Tom Butler. If you made it into Sara’s circle, you were her child too. Lana loved her kids, and she never had a favorite. Can we talk about GRANDKIDS! Lana LOVED being a grandma and they were her world. SO much, that Lana moved to Jefferson in 2015 to be closer to Matthew, Sara, Emma, and Cole. Lana could be found at the fields or courts cheering them and their teammates on.
In her spare time you could find Lana watching basketball. Basketball was a second religion in her house and football was a hard favorite too. Lana was an immense fan of ISU Cyclones (sometimes she questioned why), Lady Vols, Celtics and the Green Bay Packers. She was an avid collector of elephants, flashlights, and jars of pickles. Never one to waste anything, Lana would remind everyone that things could freeze beautifully and would be happy to show you how.
After moving to Jefferson, Lana found new friends and coffee clubs to join. Besides pickles, Lana loved a good cup of coffee, chocolate donuts, and conversation. She loved being closer to Emma and Cole, because becoming a grandma was better than raising her own. Grandmas (that are old nurses) tell their children to send the grandkids to the doctor, even though when THEY were kids it was, “suck it up unless you’re dead or dying”.
Lana never met a stranger. She was loved and known by many. She loved hard, sometimes TOO hard, her passion about those in her life could always be felt.
Left to cherish Lana’s memory are, Sara (Matthew), Emma and Cole Brighton, of Woodward, Iowa; Jason (Elizabeth), Kaedyn, McKinley Cody of Mason City, Iowa; Jeremy Cody (Nikki Hoefker) Keagan, Nevaeh, Carver Cody of Mason City, Iowa; Dion (Allison) Brice, Collins, and Elliot Cody of Mason City, Iowa; and Elizabeth Heuer of Denver, CO; sister-in-law, Bernie Sutter Columbus, GA; niece, Molly Sutter Columbus, GA. There are many nieces, nephews, cousins, that she loved VERY much. Friends, Bill Cody of Mason City, Iowa, Bernie Heuer of Mason City, Iowa, Dave Price of Kuai, HI, and Lavonne (Ms. B) Miles of Mason City, Iowa.
Lana was preceded in death by her parents, Nyals and Judy Sutter; sister, Rev. Linda Sutter Olson; brother, Rev. Gary Sutter; former husband, Allan (Butch) Schaefer and son of her heart, Tom Butler.