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Verna was born on January 3, 1927, in Dyersville, Iowa to Henry and Margaret Mary Kalb George. She was raised in Dyersville and attended parochial school there. She received a degree in nursing from Mercy Hospital in Dubuque and served as a nurse in Iowa, Arizona and California.

On October 31, 1949, she was married to Merlin Manatt at St. Xavier Basilica in Dyersville. The couple lived in Victor and Brooklyn before moving to Grinnell in 1968. She took great pride in raising her six children and maintaining their home. In 1968, Governor Harold Hughes awarded her with a 'Life Saving Award.' She enjoyed spending the winter months with her husband and family in Indian Wells, California.


Verna was a member of St. Mary's Catholic Church in Grinnell and was past president of the Altar and Rosary Society. She also was a member of PEO, TTT, Priscilla Club and the Red Hat Club.

Survivors include her husband, Merlin Manatt of Grinnell; her children, Bradford James (Mary) Manatt of Newton, Michelle Marie Manatt of Minneapolis, Minnesota, Margaret Mary 'Molly' (Bob) Hier of Castle Rock, Colorado, Julie Ann Manatt of Eden Prairie, Minnesota, Jeffrey George Manatt of Kirkland, Washington and Anthony John 'Tony' (Piper) Manatt of DeWitt, Iowa; 13 grandchildren, Drew, Joe, Amanda, Emily, Ellen, Gabe, Nick, Molly, Maxwell, Jai, Beau, Hunter and Hans; one great grandson, Brooklyn James Manatt; and one sister, Kathleen Tobin of Minneapolis.

She was preceded in death by her parents; one sister, Gladys Tauke; and two brothers, Robert and Eldon George.




Memorials may be directed to St. Mary's Parish Foundation or to Loras College Scholarship Fund and sent in care of the Smith Funeral Home, P.O. Box 368, Grinnell, Iowa 50112.

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