Janet Craig, 75, Oakland, IA, passed away at her Oakland home on June 12, 2018. Funeral services will be at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, June 15, 2018 at the Loess Hills Funeral Home in Carson, IA. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service. Burial will be in the Carson Cemetery.
Memorials: Directed to the family
Janet Dian Craig, one of two daughters of Richard Ralph and Maxine Alice (Strayer) Dinkel, was born on February 26, 1943 in Omaha, Nebraska. Janet worked in the finance department of Northern Natural Gas in Omaha and later at the Oakland Gas plant. She took classes to be a master gardener. Janet started Country Classics, a Christmas gift and collectible store, in Walnut, IA, painted thousands of Santa's and attended large craft shows from Chicago to California.
Janet and Orien Wayne Hodges were united in marriage on February 26, 1988 at the Presbyterian Church in Carson.
Janet loved animals, flower gardening, reading, cooking, baking and dancing around the kitchen with her grandchildren. She was ambidextrous and could write with either hand. Janet hosted countless exchange students from Mexico, Brazil, Germany, Japan, and Nicaragua, to name a few, making her a "mom around the world". She loved spending time with her family, grandchildren, and friends. She was the best mom and grandma to her family and a good friend to all who knew her.
Janet passed away at her rural Oakland, Iowa home on June 12, 2018 at the age of 75 years, 3 months, and 16 days. She was preceded in death by her parents.
Janet is survived by Orien Hodges of Oakland; children, Bob Craig of Council Bluffs, IA, Becky (Jeff) Craig of Oakland, Ryan (Sally) Craig of Council Bluffs, Jeff (Crystal) Hodges of Oakland, and Deanna (David) Barker of Papillion, NE; 7 grandchildren, Amy, Michelle, Jake, Austin, Hunter, Danielle, Daelyn; 3 step grandchildren, Ashley, Brian, and Lucas; 2 great grandchildren Jaxson and Cayden; sister Patty (Mark) Wingate Takenaka of Reno, NV; her caregiver, Susan Putnam, who has become one of the family; and many friends and other caregivers.
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Janet was a mother, friend, sister and grandmother to so many people. She adopted all of us. God is so wonderful that He gave me an American mother when I was 16 years old and I decided to be an exchange student. He sent me to Oakland, Iowa to the care of Orien and Janet Hodges. The year that I spend with them was so profound and they became not only my American family but also part of my family in Brazil. My mother used to call Janet her sister. We became so close that other family members came to have this wonderful experience of study abroad in the Hodges family. We learned with Janet that love has no boundaries and it is more than family ties. She shared the American values and she knew how to spoil all of us. She always made me feel special. She took me to places in America and showed me how to be strong. I was there when she had that terrible car accident. She could have sent me to another family or back home, since she needed to recover from it but no, she made all for me to stay and feel even more welcome. Years later, I got married and she and her family came to my wedding in Brazil. What a gift to share that moment with them. My life after the experience in America through the Hodges care change forever and open the door to desire to come back here again. In God’s plan He knew I needed to have my American Mother here for one day to be an Brazilian/American mother in the US. I was blessed that 3 years ago Janet and Orien came to visit my family in Texas. She met my 3 joys. Janet was already suffering but she came and she shared moments and smiles with my boys. What gift to be able to spend one more time with my kind and cheerful American Mother. Thank you mom, thank you Jane for showing me the best that America has to offer and imprinting in my heart the love to this land. Be in Peace now. God will smile when he sees your beautiful and welcoming smile.
From your Brazilian daughter,
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