Carole Ann (Behm) Gdowski was delivered at home towards the end of World War II, on April 5, 1945, in Missouri Valley, Iowa to Shirley (Kocour) Behm and Francis (Pete) Behm. Carole went to country school as a child and graduated from Logan High School in 1963. She was active in Campfire Girls and Bluebirds becoming a leader in both. She raised two calves and had a pet raccoon (Bandit), as well as numerous cats and dogs- including her protector, China, and beloved beagle, Max. Carole was active in a CB radio club (handle: Dragon Lady), and enjoyed fast cars, and motorcycles. Growing up in Iowa; Carole lived in Dunlap, Logan, and Missouri Valley. She enjoyed traveling and lived a short time in both California and Kansas before returning to Iowa. Carole’s first job was as a shift manager at Dairy Queen. She later worked at several restaurants, Mercy Hospital, and DeSoto Engineering, but spent the majority of her working years at two other jobs. During her 25 years at Wilkinson Manufacturing in Fort Calhoun, Nebraska, she worked alongside her dad as a machine operator making parts for mortar shells, and eventually in quality control, where she worked with her daughter, Brenda. In her nearly 22 years at Westmont Care Center in Logan, Iowa; Carole was a nurse’s aide and took continuing education classes to become a medication aide. Both Kristi and Brenda were privileged to work with her at Westmont. Carole spent quality time with the residents and gave them the care and respect they deserved. She always took great pride in her work. Carole was a very self-reliant woman who wasn’t afraid to replace wheel bearings, drop a gas tank, or replace a drive shaft. She could diagnose car problems just by listening. Carole had three equally independent daughters: Sheri (Behm) Wines, Brenda (Behm) Bostwick, and Kristi (Hart) Frazier. On December 9, 1988, Carole married her best friend, Ed Gdowski. They made their home in Logan, Iowa for over 30 years before moving to Missouri Valley. Ed and Carole enjoyed family trips together to the Iowa State Fair, Wisconsin Dells, and Black Hills. Carole was always right about everything (at least that’s what she told Ed). Carole was a fantastic cook who collected cookbooks and shared some of her secret ingredients with her granddaughters. She loved music and had an extensive collection of vinyl albums. She also liked trivia games, Native American history, doing craft projects, and going to yard sales. Carole had a great deal of love for each of her grandchildren and enjoyed spending time with them whenever possible. Carole battled breast cancer and kidney disease bravely for the last 20 years of her life and was blessed to have children and grandchildren willing to help with all aspects of her care so she could remain at home. Ed was dedicated to Carole; seldom leaving her side during numerous hospital stays and caring for her daily. Carole was preceded in death by her parents Francis (Pete) and Shirley (Kocour) Behm; granddaughter, Starla Hember; and son-in-law, Kevin Bostwick. Carole is survived by her husband, Ed Gdowski of Missouri Valley, Iowa; Sister, Roberta (Marlyn) Anderson of Mondamin, Iowa; Daughters: Sheri (Harry) Wines of Bennington, Nebraska; Brenda Bostwick of Missouri Valley, Iowa; and Kristi (Donavon) Frazier of Missouri Valley, Iowa; Grandchildren: Zachary Hember, Jarodd (Melinda) Hember, Kelsey (Nicholas Cardona) Stoneking, Kevin (Skeeter) Bostwick, Patrisha Bostwick, and Skylar Frazier; and great-grandson Jaxton Ryan Hember.
Visitation will be Monday, September 6, 2021 5:00 p.m. ~ 8:00 p.m.
Funeral Service will be Tuesday, September 7, 2021 10:30 a.m.
At Hennessey Funeral Home in Missouri Valley, Iowa