SIOUX FALLS | Florence Annette Cook passed away on Sept. 9, 2019 in Sioux Falls at the age of 89. A Celebration of Life service will be held on Wednesday, June 17, 2020, at Wayne Zion Lutheran Church in Monticello, IA.
Florence was born July 25, 1930, in Amber, IA, to Engwert and Engel Willms. She attended high school in Anamosa, IA, where fellow students remember a warm, witty and loving person.
After attending nursing school in Cedar Rapids, IA, she worked at Mercy Hospital where she was known by her colleagues and patients for her caring, compassionate spirit and quick wit.
With a work ethic characteristic of so many born during the great depression, Florence moved to Rapid City in 1986, where she not only worked tirelessly for Safeway grocery stores, but also managed a large apartment complex for the next 20 years. A longtime member of Calvary Lutheran Church, she is remembered in life according to Philippians 4:8,9.
Though tempered by the devastating effects of dementia, her family were blessed with a treasured softness. During the remaining years, they were afforded the honor of returning to her a small measure of the service and patience she herself long exhibited.
While she now lives with her heavenly father, her earthly legacy lives on in her six grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren who remember her for all of the wonderful reasons grandchildren love a grandparent — humor, lightheartedness, graciousness, a warm smile, great laugh, long hugs and above all, unconditional love.
Her memory is cherished and sustained by her sister, Juanita Christianson/Stephenson of Rapid City; her daughter, Lana Ostrowski of Lanoka Harbor, NJ; sons, Thomas Paul VanSkike of Rapid City, and Warren E. VanSkike of La Quinta, CA.
Florence was preceded in death by her brother, Arnie Willms of Topeka, KS; husbands, John Cook and Leland Van Skike; and son, Michael Leland Van Skike of La Quinta.