Rosanna Catherine Norton was born on April 12, 1932, to Ralph Harvey and Priscilla Catherine (Conrad) Harlow at their home near Melcher in Marion County, Iowa. When Rosanna was just four years old her mother passed away. She and her three brothers went to live with their maternal grandparents, John and Mary Conrad, and were raised to adulthood by them in a large, loving family. Rosanna attended school in the nearby community of Bauer. She and her brothers, aunts and uncles, walked the four miles from the farm to St. Joseph’s Catholic School in all kinds of weather. As she grew to teenage years, she felt a calling to religious life. Her aunt, Sr. Lugardes Conrad, took her under her wings and assisted her to enroll at St. Joseph High School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where she graduated and then went on to enter the Franciscan School Sisters. She furthered her education at St. Scholastica College in Duluth, Minnesota and received her B.S. there in 1969. Rosanna taught at several Catholic Schools in the Midwest prior to leaving the religious order. She was then employed at hospitals in various locations, working in medical records. Rosanna married Ernest Austin and after their divorce she moved to California and continued to work there until her marriage to Donald Norton. Together they raised their niece, Cynthia, and an adopted daughter, Desiree.
Rosanna enjoyed all kinds of family activities with Don and the girls on their acreage near Homeland, California. She served her church by teaching Christian Doctrine in the various parishes to which she belonged. After Don’s death and the girls left home, she continued to live on the acreage until health issues developed. She then moved back to Iowa, where she resided at the Dunlap Care Center in Dunlap, Iowa.
Rosanna died on Saturday, July 31, 2021, at the Dunlap Care Center at the age of 89 years, three months and 19 days.
Rosanna is preceded in death by her parents; infant brother, Richard; brothers, Paul and Clarance; and husbands, Ernest Austin and Donald Norton. She is survived by her daughter, Desiree Pickett along with her husband Neige and their children, Brodi and Maliah; special niece, Cynthia Dillehay (Jeremiah); brother, Bernard Harlow (Maxine) of Edward, Missouri; sisters-in-law, Marjorie Harlow of Denison, Iowa and Bertha Harlow of Melcher; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
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