Yvonne Alexandria Marie Bruhand
BORN: August 18, 1899, in Mayenne, Normandy, France
DIED: March 17, 1993, in Woodbine, Harrison County, Iowa
AGED: 93 years, 6 months
BURIED: Dow City Cemetery, Dow City, Crawford County, Iowa
FATHER: Francois Bruhand
MOTHER: Marie Anastasi Laffrey
MARRIAGE: to Cecil Francis Edwards on July 9, 1919, at Alencon, Normandy, France
1. February 15, 1922, male child died at 3 months of age
2. July 5, 1923, female child, died
3. January 30, 1925, male child born premature, lived 8 months
4. Another child, sex unknown, was born premature because of an automobile accident in Minnesota. Date and location are unknown.
5. Normand Francis Edwards born October 21, 1929, in Ames, Story County, Iowa
6. Iris Loraine Edwards born May 20, 1930, in Ames, Story County, Iowa
Yvonne Alexandria Marie Bruhand was born on August 18, 1899, in Mayenne, Normandy, France. She was a young nurse, only nineteen years of age, when she met a soldier named Cecil Edwards, who was serving with the U.S. Army forces during WWI. They fell in love and eventually got married on July 9, 1919, at Alencon, Normandy, France. After their marriage, they set sail for the United States. After a long train trip, they arrived in Dow City in August of 1919. They were the "talk of the town" because Cecil was the first WWI soldier to bring a French bride back to Dow City.
Life for Yvonne must have been difficult because she was in a strange country and didn't know how to speak English. But, she was a resourceful person and eventually overcame all the challenges that came her way. She valued education, and it was partly due to her encouragement that the family moved to Ames, where Iowa State College was located.
Yvonne was short in stature, only about 5’- 6” in height. She spoke with an accent, as would be expected for someone coming from a foreign country. She had a kind of shrill voice that sometimes had an edge to it whenever she was excited or when she was speaking loudly in order to make a point. Yvonne had sort of a giggling laugh and a very pleasant smile. She liked children and was always trying to get us to learn French. Yvonne loved to sew, and she was very good almost any craft. In fact, she seemed to excel in whatever she chose to do. She was a hard worker and housed students when they lived close to Iowa State College. In later years, she also worked alongside Cecil at the Iowa State Nursery. She liked reading about medical topics, and she was usually ready to tell you what was wrong if you didn't feel well. One thing that Yvonne never mastered, however, was driving a car. She was only a fair driver at best. She frequently over-revved the engine, and sometimes seemed to have a difficult time shifting gears. Yvonne was a generous person, and she was always ready to help anyone. When I was in fourth grade, she helped me make a model of an oasis. It had lots of sand, a well, palm trees, and even some tents. Because of her help, I got an "A" on the project.
Cecil suffered a stroke and died on March 3, 1969, in Ames. Yvonne continued to live in their home for awhile, but she eventually moved to Woodbine, Iowa, to be close to her daughter. Just over twenty-four years after Cecil's death, Yvonne passed away in Woodbine, on March 17, 1993. Cecil and Yvonne are buried in the municipal cemetery at Dow City.