March 11, 2014


Linda Marie Hadden Hardy, 62, loving mother and grandmother, educator and entrepreneur, died Saturday, March 8, 2014, of complications from a brain aneurysm at Mercy Hospital in Des Moines.

Mass of the Christian burial will be at 10:30 a.m. Thursday March 13, at St. Columbkille Catholic Church, Churdan, Iowa. Officiating will be the Revs. Jeff Schleisman, Lynn Bruch and Kenneth J. Glaser.

Casket bearers will be Tyler Stotts, Thomas Mussig, Andy Hadden, Brian Hadden, Mike Minnehan and John Lonergan. Honorary casket bearers will be Linda's 23 grandchildren.

Burial will be at St. Patrick Catholic Cemetery, Cedar Township, west of Churdan.

Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, March 12, at St. Columbkille Catholic Church, where there will be a rosary at 6 p.m. at vigil for the deceased at 6:30 p.m.

Brown Funeral Home in Jefferson is in charge of arrangements.

A daughter of Edward and Leona (Shoemaker) Hadden, she was born March 23, 1951. Linda earned diplomas from Paton-Churdan High School in 1969, Buena Vista University with a bachelor of arts degree in 1984, and Drake University with a master's in counseling in 1986.

The conservative Irish Catholic married Irishman John Joseph Hardy Jr. on Sept. 6, 1969. Linda gave birth to six children from 1970-1978 and in her spare time attended classes at Buena Vista University while graduating magna cum laude shortly before giving birth to her seventh child in 1984.

The Broadway musical and current-events aficionado believed in civic engagement and was an active member of the Cowbells, a women's group to help promote the beef industry. Linda traveled to Washington, D.C., to promote beef to legislators. Linda was an active member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Lohrville, Catholic Daughters of the Americas and the Rosary Society of St. Columbkille in Churdan, and most recently St. Boniface Catholic Church in Waukee and a member of the prayer chain.

An educator for more than 20 years, Linda held positions such as teacher, counselor and administrator for schools throughout west-central and northwest Iowa. Linda believed in helping students find and develop their passions in life. She often took fellow teachers, parents and administrators to task on educational bureaucracy that often got in the way of helping a student complete a course or diploma. It was during this time that she served the role of pseudo-mother for less fortunate students; often buying Christmas presents or food for them. She counseled some high school teenagers during their darkest hours. Linda's big heart and patience made her a favorite among students.

While managing her roles as mother and educator, she still found time to run small businesses. In her early 20s, Linda founded and successfully owned Linda's Fabrics, a small fabric and clothing store out of her home; selling the business to raise money for her college education. Linda's next business venture, in the late 1980s, with the Longaberger Basket Company, selling the decorative collectors baskets for 25 years to customers all over the globe.

In 2008, Linda transitioned out of her small-business role to focus mainly on being a grandmother. During this time Linda would simply be known as "Grams" with a license plate that read "Grams 7." A social-media savant, Linda kept up with her children and grandchildren's busy lives through Facebook. She reconnected with former students, friends, cousins, nieces, nephews, and other relatives across the country.

Linda is survived by her daughter, Christina Scotts of Boone and her children Tyler and Tiffany; son, Joseph and wife Stacie (Schleisman) of Sergeant Bluff and their children, Sidney, Madison, Payton and Joey; son, Michael and wife Christy (Ludwig) of Lohrville and their children, Megan, Mariah, Matthew and Maximus; son, Kevin J. and wife Patricia (Mayhan) of Cincinnati, Ohio, their children, Burke, Kennedy and Meeghan; daughter, Karen and husband Chad (Mussig) of Gladbrook and their children, Madeline, Thomas, Samuel, Henry, Anna, and Catherine; daughter, Mary and husband Andrew Tice of Des Moines and their children, Olivia, William, Caroline, and Alexander; and son, Marc and wife Megan (Bullis) of Hereford, Texas; mother, Leona Hadden of Carroll; brother, Neal Hadden and his wife Marcia of Oskaloosa, and brother, Lawrence (Jack) Hadden of Washington, D.C.

She was preceded her in death by her father Edward Hadden and grandparents.