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Norma Jean (Wells) Bailey, age 92 of Buffalo, MN – formerly of Marshalltown and Primghar, IA, passed away February 17, 2023 surrounded by her family.

She was born on January 6, 1931 in Dayton, Ohio to Isaac Lloyd and Mabel (Martin) Wells. She spent much of her childhood in Kentucky, where she attended Winchester High School. She graduated with the class of 1949.

Norma enlisted in the United States Air Force to serve her country. She was inducted on February 13, 1951 and proudly served until her honorable discharge in July of 1952. During her time of service, she was joined in marriage to Dale Richard Bailey on May 18, 1952 in Tacoma, WA. Norma and Dale’s military career had the family relocating to many areas of the world, until they were finally able to settle in Haverhill, Iowa. She eventually relocated to Primghar, IA, where she lived for 20 years, before relocating to Buffalo, MN, where she spent the last 2 years of her life.

Norma had a generous and kind soul with a dash of feistiness. She was fun-loving and always up for a good time. She truly was a kid at heart; she loved teddy bears, Mickey & Minnie Mouse, and had a massive collection of stuffed animals. She was rarely found without a smile on her face. Norma was known for decorating her home to fit the holiday themes and made sure to cover every inch of space with a trinket or embellishment. She went all out and never held back from creating fun and memorable designs. Her children and grandchildren were the light of her life. She really loved all of the times the family could be together.

She is preceded in death by her husband: Dale; parents: Isaac and Mabel Wells; grandson: Jared Nelson; siblings: Harold, Paul, Donald, Jack, and Geraldine; and sons-in-law: Marvin Wegter and Marvin Nelson.

Norma is survived by her children: Dianne (DeVon) Swenson of Radcliffe, IA, Donna (Gary) Abbe of Greenville, SC, Denise Wegter of Buffalo, MN, Beverly Nelson of Spencer, IA, Charles (Kendra) Bailey of Kansas City, MO, and Carole (Chris) Clevenger of Edwardsville, IL: 15 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren with one on the way; sisters-in-law: Carole Wells and Sandy Bailey; brother-in-law: Ed (Deb) LaPour; and many nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held Friday, March 10, 2023 at 11:00 AM with visitation one hour prior at the Buffalo Evangelical Free Church in Buffalo, MN (2051 50th St NE, Buffalo, MN 55313). Additional funeral service will be held Saturday, March 11, 2023 at 2:00 PM with visitation one hour prior at Mitchell Family Funeral Home (1209 Iowa Avenue W, Marshalltown, Iowa 50158). Interment with military honors to follow at Rose Hill Memorial Gardens in Marshalltown, IA.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to The Peterson Chapel of Buffalo, MN and Mitchell Family Funeral Home of Marshalltown, IA. Online condolences for the family may be directed to or Mitchell Family Funeral Home | Marshalltown, IA (


2 Guestbook Entries

  1. Ed and Deb LaPour

    We’ll always see that smile and hear that laugh…

  2. Marcia Groves

    My dearest Aunt Norma, you are missed by so many. Although we didn’t see you very often, I always will remember you to have a smile on your face. I have no doubt that smile is lighting up heaven in the most spectacular way! We love you so very much! Marcia and Rick❤️❤️❤️


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