Fun-loving, feisty, meticulous, and no stranger to hard work, Janet (Jan) Theresa Kluever, 88, passed away peacefully on June 22, 2023, at University Hospital & Clinics in Columbia, Missouri, with her husband, Allan Kluever, and her daughter, Jolene Kington, by her side. After a spirited, two-year battle with complications following a stroke, Jan finally succumbed to failing health. Until the day she died, she lived comfortably at home thanks to the loving care of her family, friends, and caregivers.
Janet was born on April 9, 1935, in Davenport, Iowa to the late Leo and Rose (nee Beine) Peterschmidt. Janet enjoyed a happy childhood in Davenport, where she spent weekends dancing, roller-skating, going to the movies, and ice-skating. She attended parochial schools in Davenport and graduated from Immaculate Conception Academy in 1953 where she was a straight-A student. In the late-1950s, Janet moved to Denver, Colorado, living the life of a carefree bachelorette for three years. Always good at numbers and blessed with a sharp eye for detail, she worked there as an office manager and accountant. On November 10, 1962, she married a young farmer named Allan Kluever who convinced her to give up city life for the country. Though Jan knew nothing about farming, she plunged right into it; and together, she and Allan operated a successful, 200-acre dairy farm north of Eldridge, Iowa for over 30 years. Janet learned how to garden, drive a tractor, and preserve fruits and vegetables. She also made the best rhubarb pie of anyone in Scott County (her secret: lots of sugar and lard). Janet and Allan had three children of whose accomplishments they were very proud: Craig, an aerospace engineer; Kevin, an artist and teacher; and Jolene, a clinical researcher. The farm, a 365-day operation, and the demands of a growing family kept Jan busy. But she and Al always had time for fun. On Friday nights, they would go to the local bar and grill, Sneaky Pete’s; they attended their children’s baseball and football games; were involved with NS Athletic Boosters (where Jan served as treasurer); and they regularly entertained friends at the farm for Christmas parties and cookouts. No one loved a Bud Light more than Jan Kluever--but she always showed up on Sundays for church at St. Ann’s, where she was an active, much-loved member. After their children left home for college, Al and Jan downsized the farm and began traveling to places like Mexico, Florida, the Pacific Northwest, and North Carolina. They also devoted themselves to their five adoring grandchildren: Silas, Sophie, Henry, Owen, and Sam, and in 2010, they bought a condominium in Columbia so they could be closer to family. Jan relished being a grandmother, and she excelled at it. Every Christmas, she’d load the floor under the tree with dozens of presents, each one perfectly wrapped, bake hundreds of chocolate waffle cookies, and on occasion even go sledding or build a snowman. Jan was also a master knitter, fast with a needle and meticulous with her stitches. She knitted everything for her grandkids, from stuffed animals when they were born to an afghan when they went off to college.
Janet is survived by her husband and children, her sister, Carol (of Cedar Falls, Iowa); and her five grandchildren, all of whom miss her more than words can say. She is preceded in death by her oldest sister Marilyn, her oldest brother Robert, and her twin brother, Jack.
A memorial service will be held at Faith Lutheran Church (500 W LeClaire Rd, Eldridge, Iowa) on July 31. Visitation begins at 9 am and a remembrance and celebration of Janet’s life will begin at 10 am. Following the service Janet will be laid to rest at Davenport Memorial Park. Friends and family are welcome to attend a gathering at the Kluever farm (19253 250th ST, Eldridge, Iowa) beginning at 5 pm. The family will hold a celebration of Janet’s life at a gathering at the Cambridge Place Homeowner’s Club House in Columbia, Missouri later this summer.
The family would like to especially thank Bonnie York and Lisa Parker for the amazing care they gave Jan until the very end.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations be sent to St. Ann’s Church in Long Grove or to a charity of the donor’s choice.