Jeanne Verne Blahnik

Honored by:Corly Blahnik Petersen and Bob Blahnik
Brick location:B:6  map

Mother - Artist - Wife - Photographer - Friend - Volunteer Daughter - Activist - Aunt - Gardener - Humanitarian - Potter Grandmother - Naturalist - Gourmet cook - Sister - Educator Traveler - Organizer - Storyteller - Decorator - Singer - Daughter-in-law - Weaver - Counselor - Beauty - Listener

Dear Mom,

When we heard that the Carrie Chapman Catt Center was going to construct a Plaza of Heroines at Iowa State University to honor important women who have made a difference, we wanted to be certain that you were represented. Today is Mother's Day and it is also your 77th birthday. We are thrilled to place your name on a brick that will be part of the Plaza along with many other women who are honored because they made a positive difference in the lives of those they knew. The Plaza could not be complete without you being represented.

Born Jeanne Patricia Verne on May 8, 1917 in Moorehead, Minnesota you found your way to Iowa State University in 1937 because the school you attended, North Dakota State University, was temporarily closed. You were housed in a room at the top of the Memorial Union and you transferred your Applied Art major in Home Economics.

Because of your artistic talent you had the opportunity to work in Christian Petersen's studio whose sculptures still adorn the Iowa State campus. It was while you were here that you met Dad, Robert Lumir Blahnik, an Iowa State engineer, basketball player, member of Scabbard and Blade, and a dashing young dancer. He captured your heart for life.

Following graduation from Iowa State in 1939, you worked in Iowa for the Extension Service. Because of impending World War II, you and Dad got married on June 28, 1941. While Dad was overseas for four years, you worked as an artist for the U.S. Army and lived all over the U.S. When Dad returned from his service, you both settled in Cedar Rapids, Iowa where you have lived ever since.

In 1946 your daughter Corlice Jeanne Blahnik was born, and in 1950 you were blessed with a son, Robert Paul Blahnik. Your life has been devoted to your family and we are grateful. Whether organizing child study groups, PTA school boards, League of Women Voters, AAUW, Camp Fire Garden Club, or the Indian Creek Nature Center, you have always been dedicated to improving society for children and families. And you are devoted to your own family. As both of us rear our own children, we thank you for your devotion and love.

Iowa State University has continued to play an important role in your life. You are an active Home Ec alum and have been honored by receiving the Helen LeBaron Hilton award from the Home Economics College. You and Dad are ardent Cyclone fans to this day, and have made innumerable trips across Highway 30 to visit the campus. Both of us received undergraduate degrees from Iowa State as did Bob's wife, Jeanne. Now you are great Cyclone recruiters for your four grandchildren.

And you and Dad are just the greatest couple! Your love for each other is remarkable and provides a solid foundation for our whole family. Not only do we appreciate both of you, but you offer a loving model that many grandchildren do not have. Your artistry, wit, love of nature deep, sensitivity to others, and dedication to family weave a lovely tapestry that will forever adorn our lives.

We are so proud to recognize and honor you by placing your name on an engraved brick in the Plaza of Heroines at the Carrie Chapman Catt Hall on the Iowa State University campus and by entering this letter in the Roll of Honor. You have inspired our lives and we love you very much.

With love,

Corly Jeanne (Blahnik) Petersen and Bob Paul Blahnik May 8, 1994