Carol Ann Brokel, 87, died peacefully in her home on April 26, 2021.

Carol was born Nov. 29, 1933, in Williamsburg, the daughter of Cyril and Gladys (Wilson) Spangler. Throughout her childhood Carol lived in several small towns around Eastern Iowa including Cascade, Springville, Anamosa and Lisbon, where she graduated from Lisbon High School in 1951. After marriage Carol and her family settled in her beloved Mount Vernon, where she has made her home ever since.

Carol’s proudest achievement, next to her family, was working to the age of 81 after retiring from over 50 years as part of the administrative staff with Cornell College, Mount Vernon. Carol was a fixture on the Cornell Campus and the matriarch of West Science. Her dedication to the college was exemplary. Whatever you needed, whether that be typing and proofreading a manuscript, proctoring an exam, planning an annual picnic and holiday luncheon, welcoming students, or simply listening and giving life advice, Carol provided. She loved every day she spent at Cornell and regretted her day of retirement. Carol touched the lives of many Cornellians throughout her career, many of whom became her extended family, staying close with her till the end.

In her free time, you could find Carol doting on her greatest joy, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Saturday mornings were spent with lifelong friends at Gwen’s Café in Lisbon for breakfast. She was an avid follower of the Eastern Iowa Brass Band and Orchestra Iowa, and attended several events throughout the years. She was also a master New York Times crossword puzzle solver and a voracious reader of mystery novels.

Carol dedicated her life to kindness and for caring for those around her. She was the kind of mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend you were blessed to have, and she will be missed dearly by all who loved her.

Carol is survived and lovingly remembered by her sons David (Jane) Brokel of Riverside and Robert Brokel of Springville; grandchildren, Cameron (Jacob) Noyes, Brian Brokel, Dustin (Heather) Brokel, Brandon (Erin) Brokel, Aubrey Brokel and Colin Brokel; great-grandchildren, Chace Noyes, Reece Noyes, Ryan Brokel, Kylie Brokel, Michaela Brokel and Meredith Brokel; and sister, Patsy Sommerville of Mount Vernon.

She is preceded in death by her son Steven Brokel; parents; brother, Herb Spangler; and sister in-law, Mavis Spangler.

Carol chose to donate her body to medical science and research through the University of Iowa, Carver College of Medicine, Deeded Body Program.

A Memorial Tree Planting will be held in Carol’s honor on the Cornell College Campus, Wednesday, May 12, 2021, at 3 p.m. The service will be a standing-only service and held rain or shine. The event may be viewed virtually as well. Additional details can be found at

Memorials on Carol’s behalf may be directed to the Cornell College Advancement Office, 600 First St SW, Mount Vernon, Iowa 52314.

Please share your support and memories with Carol’s family on her tribute wall at under obituaries.

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