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Roberta Kay (Short) Cave


Roberta Kay (Short) Cave was born October 2, 1936, at home near Redfield, Iowa to Lloyd and Martha (Boots) Short. In her early life, she lived on a farm south of Redfield. In her childhood on the farm, she developed a love for animals, especially horses. This love continued throughout her life, and into her home décor.


January 24, 1954, Roberta (Bertie) was united in marriage to Neal Cave. To their union was born two daughters, Pam and Linda. The family moved to Des Moines in 1966. Bertie retired from the Polk County Clerk of Court’s office in 1996. In retirement, she and Neal enjoyed several wonderful trips abroad, and became snow birds for many winters in Lake Havasu City, AZ. But her favorite pastime was spending time with family and friends. Her husband, daughters and their families were her world. In addition, in her words, “My nieces and nephews hold a very special place in my heart.”


Bertie’s faith, family and friends have been her support throughout her fight with ovarian cancer. She died at home on February 12, 2023, surrounded by her family.


Roberta is survived by her husband, Neal; two daughters, Pamela (Ronald) Wood of Gravois Mills, MO, and Linda (Mark) Yaske of Polk City, Iowa; two grandchildren, J.D. Yaske and Katie (Colin Valencia) Yaske; two step-grandchildren, Erica (Darryl) Mooney, and Tara (Brandon) Ichelson; and one brother, Tom (Sue) Short of Redfield. Also surviving are six nieces and two nephews: Randy, Sandy, Cindi, Patty, Sara, Emily, Rachel and Michael, and families. She is preceded in death by her parents, Lloyd Short and Martha Short, parents-in-law Howard and Vera Cave, a brother, Jim Short, a sister-in-law Barbara Crowl, and a niece, Elizabeth Short.


From her husband and daughters: “To us, she was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother and aunt. There was never an occasion when she did not have the time to listen and offer counsel if asked. As a young mother, she displayed wisdom beyond her years, which never waned. She was a friend to many, and we are honored to know that many looked to her as a mother figure. Her life was an example to all of faith, love and compassion for others. It was her legacy to her family, and illustrated by one of her favorite prayers, St. Francis of Assisi.”


Roberta will be cremated. Her expressed wish was to have a graveside memorial service for family to be held at a later date. Memorials can be made to New Hope United Methodist Church, 4525 Beaver Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50310.




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