February 26, 2008
September 4, 1917 - February 26, 2008
Doretha Frances Klein died February 26, 2008 at the age of 90. A lifelong resident of Pella, Iowa, Doretha was born September 4, 1917 to Gertrude (Van Ommen) and Benjamin Vogelaar at the family farm east of Pella. She attended Flint Ridge Country School, then continued in the Pella school system when the family moved into town when she was six years old, graduating from Pella High School in 1935. After graduation, Doretha went to work at the Rolscreen Company. On June 16, 1938 she married Robert J. (Bob) Klein. To this marriage three children were born: Sandra Ann, Pamela Ruth, and Robert Vogelaar.
Doretha was a strong role model for her children, raising them to have high expectations and confidence to do things well. She enjoyed sewing, making most of her and her daughters' clothing when they were young. She mastered the art of home restoration when she and Bob restored one of Pella's first homes. She enjoyed cooking, gardening, and flower arranging, was a charter member of the Pella Garden Club, and spent many years serving on the Scholte Garden committee.
In 1959 Bob and Doretha started the Holland House, one of Pella's first fine dining restaurants. She later worked the cash register for several years for her friend Marie Blecha at the Pella Coffee Shop. From 1968 to 1978 Doretha managed the Central College Bookstore. In 1973 Bob & Doretha co-founded Strawtown Inn.
Her Christian faith was very important to Doretha and she made profession of her faith at a young age at Third Reformed Church. She was a member of Second Reformed Church for over 65 years.
Doretha is survived by her husband of nearly 70 years, Bob; her three children, Sandy (Bruce) Heerema, and Robert V. Klein of Pella, Pam Wheeler of Irvine, California; her brother Carl and his wife Joan of Santa Rosa, California; her sister Ruth and her husband John Vander Waal of St. Louis, Missouri; seven grandchildren, Julie (Jim) Mueller, Tim (Kelly) Heerema, Steven (Vickie) Heerema, Stacie Andrea, Molly (Jeff) Catalano, Jack Klein and Oakley Klein; nine great grandchildren, Madeline, Lindsey, and Rachel Mueller, Brady and Gabrielle Heerema Alexis, Logan, and Jacob Heerema, and Jaden Andrea.
Her parents, her brother Ackerman and twin brother preceded her in death.
A celebration of Doretha's life will be held at a later date. Memorials may be made to Pella Historical Society-Scholte Garden, 507 Franklin Street, Pella, Iowa 50219.