Karen Kay Kraft Pierce, 82, beloved daughter of Dwight and Elvina (Petersen) Kraft, was born on Oct. 11, 1941, in Carroll. She peacefully passed away on Friday, Jan. 26, 2024, at Taylor House in Des Moines.

Karen attended the Gardner Store country school in Audubon County for grades K-9 before graduating from Audubon High School in 1960. She was a loving mother to her two sons, Tim and Jon.

For 36 years, Karen dedicated her time and compassion as a certified nursing assistant at Guthrie County Hospital. She also selflessly volunteered for six years, driving the hospital van. Karen found immense joy in supporting her grandson’s activities and cherishing precious moments with her two great-grandsons. Showing her love through cooking meals for her family was one of her greatest joys. Family gatherings were always a delight, especially the fond memories of Christmas Eve at Grandma’s house, where they often played poker and Grandma seemed to win every year.

Karen held her family and friends dear to her heart. She possessed a selfless nature, always putting the needs of others before her own. Karen was known for her willingness to lend a helping hand to anyone who asked, and even to those who didn’t. She respected the privacy of others and was a patient teacher, whether it was guiding someone in the kitchen or imparting her knowledge on patient care at the hospital. Her absence will be deeply felt, but her legacy of compassion and service will continue to inspire.

Left to cherish her memory are her two sons, Tim (Christi) Pierce of Grimes, and Jon Pierce of West Des Moines; her grandson, Nathan (Amy) Pierce of Grimes; her two great-grandsons, Bennett (3) and Cameron (1); her sister, Connie (Randy) Steffen of Griswold; her niece, April Steffen (Tony Sorensen); her nephew, Blaine (Julie) Steffen; as well as great-nieces, great-nephews, and cousins. Karen was preceded in death by her parents, Dwight and Elvina Kraft.

Karen’s wishes were to be cremated. A private family graveside service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Guthrie County Hospital Foundation.