Obituary: Marilyn Deegan


Marilyn Deegan, 76, of Maquoketa, passed away on Monday morning, April 12, 2021, at Clover Ridge Place in Maquoketa.  A private family visitation was held and cremation has taken place, at Carson Celebration of Life Center in Maquoketa.

A celebration of Marilyn’s life will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 4, at the United Church of Christ in Maquoketa. A rowdy gathering of family and friends and time of fellowship and music will be held immediately following the celebration of life service at the Maquoketa Art Experience in Maquoketa, from 5 to 9 p.m. The family asks you to bring a new or gently used children’s book for donation to Cardinal Elementary School. 

Marilyn was an Iowa girl who happened to be raised in Colorado.  Born to Margery and Edward Soderberg on Nov. 19, 1944, Marilyn grew up in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.  She was a graduate of Lakewood High School.  She attended teachers’ college in Greeley at Colorado State College, now the University of Northern Colorado.  In June of 1969, Marilyn married Robert Deegan and relocated to Fort Collins, where Marilyn continued to teach while Rob completed his degree in veterinary medicine.  Both daughters, Anne-Marie and Lynn, were born in Fort Collins.

With her young family, Marilyn moved to Maquoketa; the town that would become home for the remainder of her life, with the exception of several years in New Zealand.  She was very involved in the life of her community, which included the Maquoketa United Church of Christ, Cardinal Elementary School, the Jackson County Historical Society, and the Maquoketa Art Experience.  

Marilyn enjoyed meaningful friendships in her community and is universally described as friendly, chatty and kind.  She sang in the church choir, was a librarian’s aide at the elementary school and volunteered at the Maquoketa Community Services Resale Shop.   She met friends for coffee or luncheon at every opportunity.  But closest to her heart, was giving.   Marilyn was generous with her earthly treasures and quietly supported the needs of others, as her way of living out the Gospel.  

Those left to honor her memory include daughters, Anne-Marie (Jason) Gephart of Donahue, and Lynn Margaret Deegan (Michael Smith) of Lakewood, Colo.; four grandchildren, Grace, Lorelei, Wyatt, and PK; a brother, Wayne (Chrisette) Soderberg of Littleton, Colo., and a brother-in-law James (Truc) Deegan of Iowa City. She was preceded in death by her husband, Robert Wayne Deegan, and her parents.

In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, memorials may be made to the Maquoketa Art Experience (, Hospice of Jackson County (, the Jackson County Historical Society (1212 E. Quarry St. Maquoketa, IA 52060) or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

Online condolences may be left at 


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