CLINTON — Grace Trula May Saunders Monahan Dalton departed this life March 2, 2009. Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, March 12, 2009, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Clinton with the Rev. Father Tom Hennen officiating. Visitation will be from 10:00 a.m. at the Schmitz Funeral Home until departing for the 11:00 a.m. funeral Mass at the church. Burial will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery.

Schmitz Funeral home is in charge of the arrangements.

Trula was born March 27, 1920, in Fulton, Iowa, the daughter of O.F. and Golda May (Vann) Saunders. She attended elementary school in a one-room schoolhouse in Fulton and graduated in 1938 from Maquoketa High School. She graduated from Cedar Rapids Business College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in 1939. She married Charles V. Monahan Jr. in 1944. He died in 1955. During those years she was employed by the Clinton Garment Factory and The Curtis Company. She was a member of the Women of the Moose. In 1960, she began working for the Clinton Police Department as one of the two women doing meter patrol. She loved being a meter maid because it allowed her to be out among people.

In 1968, she married Gerald L. Dalton. Upon their retirement in 1980, they traveled extensively in the United States by motor home, with Trula driving much of the time. For several years they spent winters in Mission, Texas. After Jerry’s death in 1988, Trula continued to travel, made trips to Alaska and Europe and spent more time in Newport News, Va. She was a member of Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Clinton, Iowa, and Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church in Newport News.

When one knew Trula, one knew a joyous person. She loved meeting people and hearing their stories and was always eager to take more people into her life. She was determined, hardworking, and protective of those she loved; she always had a story to tell or plans to make. She was one of God’s gifts — a person who lived fully.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Charles V. Monahan, Jr.; her husband, Gerald L. Dalton; one brother, Cecil Saunders; and son-in-law, David A. Gauthier.

Trula is survived by her daughter, Donna Monahan Gauthier; a sister, Benita Folk; her sisters-in-law; a brother-in-law; and nieces and nephews.

Memorials may be made to a charity of choice. Online condolences may be left by visiting

Death date: March 2, 2009