Janice “Jan” Feltes

Janice “Jan” Feltes, age 67, of Dubuque, IA, passed away at home on May 26, 2022 after a long and brave battle with ovarian cancer.  Jan never gave up hope or stopped fighting. Her family and friends are grateful for the memories that they were able to create and share because of her strength, determination, and optimism.

To honor Jan’s life,  services will be held on Tuesday, May 31, 2022 at the Church of the Nativity, 1225 Alta Vista Street, Dubuque. Visitation service will begin at 9:00am, followed by a Memorial Mass at 11:00am.

Jan had a thirst for adventure and creating memories.  She spent many years running Jan’s Grate Shop on Bluff Street and made countless friends along the way.  Her natural abilities to plan and organize eventually rose to the surface and her 2nd love, event planning soon blossomed in her life.  She was instrumental in the development and implementation of The Taste of Dubuque and The Chili Cook-off, among many other events through her time with the Mississippi River Museum and Catfish Charlie’s with the American Lady Cruises.  Jan was also a devoted volunteer with the Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens after she moved softly into retirement.  Her love for gardening, music and spending quality time with family and friends was a consistent backdrop in her daily life, but her love for adventure was always a top priority.  Very few have packed more adventures, trips, and miles into their lives than our beloved Jan has.  Her “Dashboard Time” brought her a real sense of living life to the fullest and when you add in her insatiable quests to find the perfect McDonald’s cinnamon roll and a fresh fountain Diet Coke, you will discover what Jan determined was an undeniably successful day.  Jan was not one to allow the trials in life to dictate her attitude or schedule neither.  She was an elite event planner and an award-winning delegator who knew how to get things done. It’s difficult to imagine a more generous and kinder soul that Jan was.  Her love for life was always on display and her love for others was never in question.  The absence of Jan’s essence in this world will be hard to deny in the lives of all who knew and loved her, but we also accept that her lasting legacy residing within our own hearts and minds can be the most wonderful testimony she would ever desire to create; to see her bright and loving spirit living on through us.  Thank you, Jan, for being the rock when required, the gentle touch when needed, and the bright light in so many lives and may peace be yours now until we see your beautiful smile once again.       

Those left behind to cherish memories of Jan include her two adored children: Jennie (Ryan) Brown, Dubuque, IA and Steve (Brandy) Feltes, Gig Harbor, WA; her four grandchildren: Colin, Gavin, Dominic, and Desmond; her siblings: Dave (Karen) Wertzberger, Reno, NV, Bob (Wanda) Wertzberger, Bluffton, SC, Ed (Marly Heidkamp) Wertzberger, San Diego, CA and Judi (Dave) Weydert, Dubuque, IA; along with numerous extended family, friends, and neighbors.

Jan was preceded in death by her parents, Dave and Delores Wertzberger.

Jan’s family would like to thank Medical Associates, MercyOne, Mayo Clinic and Hospice of Dubuque for all of their care and support. We would also like to thank all of our family and friends who have helped in so many ways to help bring as much peace as possible during Jan’s journey. Your kind and generous hearts and actions have truly made a very difficult time just that much more tolerable and we cannot thank you enough for playing such a valuable and important role in our lives.

Online condolences may be shared with Jan’s family at www.tristatecremationcenter.com. Memorial contributions can be made to Jan’s family.


Church of the Nativity
1225 Alta Vista Street, Dubuque, Iowa, 52001
May 31st, 2022 from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM

Memorial Mass

Church of the Nativity
1225 Alta Vista Street, Dubuque, Iowa, 52001
May 31st, 2022 at 11:00 AM

5 comments on “Janice “Jan” Feltes
  1. Brian Schatz says:

    Jennie and family – My condolences and prayers are with you at this difficult time. What a testimony to joy and life you mom’s life was! A gift to many. Rest in the confidence of a life lived to the fullest, and wonderful memories that never pass away.

  2. Karla Burgstahler says:

    Dear Jennie, Ryan, Steve, Brandy, and families,
    I am so saddened to hear about the passing of your beautiful Mother and Grandmother. She had been such an inspiration to me in so many ways! She always had great advice whenever I was tackling a project, whether I was painting something, decorating my massage room, or planning a trip! “Use clear varnish,” she would say, “not too much, and it will keep your paint from chipping away from the weather.” She also said, “If you’re going to FL, you have to go to Navarro beach! It’s beautiful!” We discussed the trip my husband and I are planning to go on this summer to Michigan. Well, you guessed it, your Mom told us places we should go, and the activities we should do! 😉
    Your Mother inspired me during her sickness in ways she’ll probably never knew. Thankfully, during our last session, I was able to express a little of that to her. I told her, “Jan, you are quite an inspiration to me! You’re still living life to the fullest with your travels, planting your flowers, and making plans for the future!” I told her “thank you” Your mom appreciated that very much. I texted her in her last days, just to brighten her day. In fact, your mom had been on my mind a lot, so, I sent her a text. In that text I said, Sending you a big hug, and a warm smile for you today! 🤗 I didn’t know it at the time, however, that was the day she’d passed.
    I miss your mom, not the same way you all do, but I will miss my “sounding board” so very much! My life has been so blessed by knowing her in so many ways, that I will miss her greatly.
    Jennie, Ryan, Steve, Brandy, and families, you’re in my prayers, my thoughts, and my heart during this very difficult time. I have been honored to be able to call your mom a “friend.”


    Karla Burgstahler, LMT

  3. Todd Link says:

    My sympathy to the family. I knew Jan through Chile cook-off and Taste of Dubuque. Her energy and enthusiasm was contagious. She did a lot to promote Dubuque. Jan may you Rest In Peace!

  4. She was a great neighbor, i had to live with my parents who live next door since divorce, she loved her roses and flowers. I occasionally shoveled her driveway and said hi when i saw her. She enjoyed her new flower beds she put in over last years. And had her little grandkids help her garden

  5. Wayne McDermott says:

    I am so sorry for your and the world’s loss with Jan’s passing. I worked with Jan many years at the Museum and Aquarium. I even made her GRATESHOP license plate sign. She paid me in coffee beans! I think I made out! She had great enthusiasm and humor and I loved her hearty laugh.
    She got me to judge at the Chili Cook-off a few times. I wanted on every year! I will sorely miss her and think of her everytime I go to Eagle Point park, where she so often walked.

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