Margret Ann Van Order Steinbeck, 96, passed away Wednesday June 5, 2019, at Halcyon House in Washington. She was born October 1, 1922, in Galesburg, Illinois, the eldest of two children born to Frank Westbrook Van Order and Madge Rebecca (Deskin) Van Order. Margret and her family soon moved to Ottumwa, IA where she enjoyed participating in extracurricular activities such as Girl Scouts, music, and her high school swim team. Margret developed a passion for music at an early age, enjoying her studies of piano, clarinet, and bass clarinet. Throughout high school Margret continued to pursue her deep interest in piano and graduated from Ottumwa High School in the spring of 1940, also earning a graduate diploma from the Ottumwa Conservatory of Music on July 1 of that same year. Following high school, Margret attended the University of Iowa where she became a member of Kappa Alpha Theta sorority. While in college, she met her future husband, Kenneth Steinbeck. They were married April 26, 1943. In 1944 Margret graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in Home Economics. She remained in Ottumwa while Ken served in the war. Following Ken's return, they moved to a family farm north of Richland where they raised their three daughters; Karen, Kristen, and Kortney. Ken and Margret enjoyed their life on the farm for over 50 years. Margret was an active member of the Richland United Methodist Church where she participated in UMW (United Methodist Women), and for many years served as the church organist. She was a lifelong member of the Order of Eastern Star. While the girls attended Pekin High School, Margret taught piano lessons and accompanied numerous musical groups for various school, church, and community cantata performances. For several years Margret served as the sole employee of the Rubio Savings Bank of Brighton. Following the 2006 death of her husband, Margret moved to Washington, Iowa (2007) where she enjoyed becoming part of the Halcyon House community. Margret is survived by daughters Kristen Hess of Cincinnati, OH and Kortney Graybill (Mrs. David) of University Place, WA, grandchildren Vincent Woolums of Iowa City, IA; Allison Hess of Bloomington, IN; Jeremy Hess of Brighton, UK; Darcy Timaru of Larchmont, NY, and great grandchildren, Fielding Woolums and Alexandra Timaru, brother-in-law Carroll Steinbeck of Rubio, IA and nephew Jim Steinbeck of Fairfield, IA. Margret was preceded in death by her parents, Frank and Madge Van Order; husband, Kenneth Steinbeck; daughter, Karen Steinbeck Woolums; and brother, Paul Van Order. Margret was a devoted wife and mother, blessed with a long and happy life. While she will always be deeply loved and missed, Margret is now only gone from sight as we celebrate her strong faith and passage into eternal life with her Friend and Savior, Jesus Christ.
A Celebration of Life service will be held at the Richland United Methodist Church Saturday, June 8, 2019, at 11:00 AM, with Rev. Tim Schoepf and Rev. Harlan Van Voorst officiating. Burial will follow at the Friends Cemetery, Richland, IA. An informal gathering will also be held in Timmons Hall at Halcyon House for Margret's Halcyon House community of friends on Sunday June 9, 2019, from 3:00 4:30 PM. Margret was an avid reader so the family requests any donations be made in support of the Halcyon House Library. These memorials may be left at the church or mailed to the family at: 5809 49th Street Court West, University Place, WA 98467 . Arrangements made by Gould Funeral Home of Richland. A special thank you and our deepest appreciation to the Wedgewood staff and Hospice Compassus for the loving and tender care Mother consistently received while at Halcyon House.