Loretta Jeanne Feeney Tarbox

Honored by:James M. Tarbox
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Loretta Tarbox was born Loretta Jeanne Feeney, eldest of six children of John and Mary Mildred (McNulty) Feeney of Churdan, Iowa, on July 5, 1926. A graduate of St. Joseph's Academy in Des Moines, she began nursing training at Des Moines' Mercy Hospital before accepting a position at St. Bernard's Hospital in Council Bluffs in 1947.  There, she also matriculated to Creighton University in neighboring Omaha, Nebr. where she met future husband, Robert W. Tarbox of Fredonia, N.Y.

In 1958, the couple and their eight children moved to Lancaster N.Y. where Loretta continued to practice nursing. Three years (and two sons) later she returned to Iowa, first establishing a home in Jefferson and three years later in Fort Dodge where she and Robert had two more children and continue to reside.

From 1963 to 1991, Loretta continued her nursing career, performing a variety of functions at Fort Dodge's Mercy and Trinity Regional hospitals and local nursing homes. She also was involved with the establishment of Fort Dodge's Meals on Wheels program, in-home health-care services and a hospice for cancer patients. As of the summer of 1995, Mrs. Tarbox was the health-care coordinator for the Edlerbridge Agency on Aging in Fort Dodge.

A long-time political volunteer and member of the Democratic Party, Loretta retained active memberships in such organizations as Fort Dodge's Inner-Church Forum, the state legislative committee of the Iowa Nurses Association, American Legion Auxiliary, League of Women Voters, Fort Dodge Women's Club, Sioux City Diocesan Council of Catholic Women, Catholic Daughters of America, Webster County Democratic Women and member of the state Democratic Central Committee, Elderbridge Agency on Aging and the Webster County Homemaker-Health Aide service. She also is an instructor in adult community education at Iowa Central Community College. In May 1995, she was a delegate to the White House Conference on Aging.

Among the awards honoring this mother of 12 are the Edith E. Ruppert Award from the Iowa Nursing Association for career achievement, the NAACP award for community service and support and bring named the American Business Women's Association woman of the year.

Submitted on 7/1/96