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Debbie Kay Doyle


DES MOINES – Debbie passed away Friday December 16th, 2022, surrounded by family at her Des Moines home.

Debbie was born February 7, 1954, in Waukon, Iowa to Robert Emmet and Mary Evelyn (Gavin) Cahalan. She was raised with her five siblings on the family farm near Harpers Ferry in Allamakee County. After graduating from Waukon High School, she moved to Des Moines to begin her career as a legal secretary. There she met Drake law student Richard Doyle. After their love blossomed, Debbie and Rick were married in 1975. Debbie retired to raise their two children, John and Kerry. Later she worked in the office at St. Augustin Catholic School. Because of her warm and welcoming nature, she was fondly referred to as the “Angel” of the school. Debbie’s life revolved around her faith, family, and friends. She was a ray of sunshine in the so many lives she touched. She was best known for her beautiful smile, and her generosity, kindness, and thoughtfulness. She had a magical way of making one feel like they are truly special. She was called “St. Debbie” by many. Most of all, Debbie was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother.

Debbie loved cats and took in many of the neighborhood strays. A life-long Elvis fan, Debbie collected an impressive amount of Elvis books and memorabilia. She was ecstatic when the Elvis movie was released earlier this year. She and Rick saw the movie three times in the theater and several times thereafter on DVD at home. Debbie was a crossword puzzle queen and voracious reader of legal and medical mysteries. A wiz in the kitchen, she was famous for her cream cheese-filled chocolate chip cupcakes. Debbie is probably best known for sending out some 800 or so Christmas cards each year to family, friends, and acquaintances.

Debbie’s life was well lived and well loved.

Debbie was preceded in death by her parents and brothers Art and Bob. She is survived by her husband Rick, son John (Jen), Roseville, CA, daughter Kerry (Felix Noll), Des Moines, grandsons Luke and Will Doyle, granddaughters Thora and Alex Noll, brother Charlie, twin brother Denny, and sister Elaine.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Augustin Catholic Church, 545 42nd St., Des Moines, on January 13, 2023, at 11:00 am. Visitation will be an hour before the Mass. A reception will follow Mass in the church parish hall.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Animal Rescue League of Iowa.

The family thanks the compassionate people at St. Croix Hospice, especially Toni and Amy, who so lovingly cared for Debbie during her final days.



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