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Virginia Sides

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Virginia Marie Sides, 96, of Carroll, Iowa, passed away peacefully surrounded by her children on Monday, Jan. 16, 2023, at Regency Park Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Carroll.

A private family funeral service will be held at Dahn and Woodhouse Funeral Home in Carroll on Thursday, Jan. 19, with the Rev. Terry Plocher officiating. Burial will be at Carroll City Cemetery.

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Dahn and Woodhouse Funeral Home in Carroll, and online condolences may be left at

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials be made to the Wounded Warrior Project.

Virginia was born on Dec. 29, 1926, to James and Opal Messier in Cedar Falls, Iowa. She lived on a farm that was later sold to the University of Northern Iowa. Her family then moved to a farm just outside of Hudson, Iowa. Upon graduation from Hudson High School in 1944, Virginia earned her clinical laboratory technique degree from Northwest Institute of Medical Technology in 1946 and became a lab technician where her primary duty was drawing blood in a hospital setting. In the 1940s, Virginia worked in several hospitals and eventually moved to California to work in her chosen profession.

Later she met her husband, Charles A. Sides, from LaPorte City, Iowa. They were married on Feb. 3, 1951, at Forest Lawn Memorial Park and returned to Iowa to raise a family. The phrase “stay-at-home-mom” didn’t exist when they were married. It was usual for women to stay home with the children while their husbands worked. They lived in multiple cities throughout Iowa as Charles was often transferred with his company, Standard Oil. Locations included Waterloo, Sioux City, Le Mars, Oelwein, Charles City, Cedar Rapids and Carroll, Iowa. Other stops after the children were grown included Dubuque, Storm Lake and finally returning to Carroll. They made many lifetime friends wherever they lived.

Virginia was fiercely independent, strong-willed, intelligent, and caring. In a conversation, one might see all of those characteristics in one setting. Virginia was a collector of things, some materially, but more importantly of friendships and relationships. She lived a full life, and the love of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren fed her soul.

Virginia was the matriarch of the Sides family. All of her children had outstanding teachers in their lives, but as parents, Virginia and Charles were the finest. They instilled upon their children a strong work ethic, the value of education, taking care of others, and a love of life. Her legacy is for her children to carry on this work with their own families and friendships both old and new. Virginia was a daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and aunt. She was also a friend, confidant, caregiver, and a source of support to countless others.

Virginia is survived by her daughter Deb (Ron) Kolczak, Lafayette, Indiana; sons Tony (Jeri), Cape Elizabeth, Maine, Kerry (Marie), Cedar Falls, Iowa, and Jim (Bev) Broken Arrow, Oklahoma; four grandchildren: Corey (Elizabeth) Sides, Brooke (Mike) Czapar, Scott Sides and Melissa (Phillip) Morrow; eight great-grandchildren: Charles, Caroline and Catherine Sides, George and Jacqueline Czapar, and Wyatt, Collins, and Blair Morrow.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her brother: Charles Messier; and her husband: Charles Sides.

For 95 years, she was able to stay in her home. For most of her adult life, she resided in Carroll. For the last 10 months, she was a resident of Regency Park Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Carroll.

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