Cover photo for Mary Catherine Adam's Obituary
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1924 Mary 2021

Mary Catherine Adam

April 24, 1924 — January 7, 2021

Mary Catherine (Pacha) Adam age 96, passed away peacefully Thursday, January 7, 2021 at home.

Mary Catherine was born near Pleasant Plain, Iowa, to Albert and Teresa “Fritz” Pacha.  She was the 2nd of 11 children, the oldest daughter.  She was united in marriage to Walter Nicholas Adam on February 6, 1945.  She and her husband began farming near Richland, Iowa and later moved to rural Batavia, Iowa and raised their family of 8 daughters and 5 sons.

Our beloved mother had no remarkable pastimes or hobbies.  No favorite music, or art and, although a lifelong reader, no books that she ever mentioned.  No other aspirations.  She belonged to few clubs and had no memberships in any organizations other than her lifelong devotion to her church, St. Mary’s of Fairfield. Only one single word can adequately describe this remarkable woman.  And it is all encompassing.  It is the all-inclusive word “mother”. Her family was, and is, her legacy, her beginning and end, her polar north and morning star.  Her family was her life.  This could fill volumes of stories during her long life and will continue long after today. Nothing else mattered!

Mary Catherine was a parishioner of St. Mary’s Catholic Church.  She will be remembered most for her bread baking, chocolate chip cookies, pie making and crocheting afghans which she gave to many of her family members.  Mary Catherine also enjoyed playing cards and liked to win.  She enjoyed the visits from her adult children and their families.

In the later years of her life, she could only estimate the ever-growing number of grand and great grandchildren.  This always brought a “Mona Lisa” smile to her.  She and our father, married for almost sixty-five years, were a team, always pulling in the exact same direction.

As we recall what we believe was a favorite song and poem though.

“Ave Maria”, the patron saint of all mothers and, “Things We Never Knew We Never Knew”, a remembrance poem about her child bearing and rearing years.”

Mary Catherine is survived by 11 of her 13 children: Maxine of Kirksville, MO - Laura Capps, Christy Frushour and, Dan; Janice (Steve) Durflinger of Batavia - Tony, Scott; Carol (deceased) - Ashley Hancock, Adam; Ed of The Villages, FL, Jennifer Young, Meredith Garcia(deceased) and Catherine Berta; Fred of Asheville, NC - Brent, Benjamin; Nick (Tena) of Batavia - Shawn, Jeff, Nicole Humston; Mary Ann (Joe) Ledger of Fairfield - Sarah Dodds, Emily Ledger; Jane (Ernie) Ragen of Fairfield - Chad, Kevin, Nathan Snyder; Cindy (Martin) Rupe of Batavia - Patrick, Andrew, Christopher; Colleen (Nick) Biggs of Ottumwa - Elizabeth Tigges, Michael and Nicholas Donlin; Barbara (Steve Peck) Adam of Knoxville, Jordan and Brandon Ledger; Tom (Marni) Adam of Fairfield - Jacob, Sidney Barker, Logan.  In addition to her 13 children and 32 grandchildren listed here, she was equally proud of her 55 great grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, son Steve, daughter Carol Murphy, grandchildren Nancy Martin, Meredith Garcia, great granddaughter Lainey Jo Ledger.  Brothers, Walter, Don, Bob, Gerald, Jerome; sisters, Joanna Peterson, Geraldine Scheller; son-in-law, Dale Martin; daughters-in-law Peggy Adam and Cindy Adam.

Visitation for family and friends will be held 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Sunday, January 10, 2021, at St Mary Catholic Church.

A Mass with Christian Burial will be 10:00 a.m., Monday, January 11, 2021, at St. Mary Catholic Church with Father Nick officiating.  Following the Mass burial will be at Eldon Cemetery, Eldon, Iowa.

Live stream of the funeral will be available on the St. Mary’s Fairfield Facebook site (stmarychurchfairfield)

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in Mary Catherine’s name or as her mother often said, “Give with warm hands”.

Please follow the COVID guidelines of wearing masks and social distancing.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Mary Catherine Adam, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, January 10, 2021

2:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

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Mass of Christian Burial

Monday, January 11, 2021

Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)

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