Constance J. Duffy, age 79, passed away on March 23, 2020 at the Methodist Manor Retirement Community in Storm Lake, Iowa. Private funeral services were held on Wednesday, March 25, 2020, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Storm Lake with Father Brent Lingle officiating. There was no visitation because of national health safety regulations. Burial followed the service at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, Storm Lake. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia was in charge of the arrangements.
Connie Jane Bell was born on March 11, 1941 at Postville, Iowa, the daughter of Melvin and Annabel Lee (Ruggles) Bell. As a young child her father was drafted into the military service during WWII. At that time Connie moved with her mother to Birmingham, Iowa, to be with Connie’s grandparents, Lee and Myrtle Ruggles. Lee was a pharmacist and Connie spent a lot of time with him at the drug store making ice cream sundaes at the soda fountain. When her father returned from military service at the end of WWII, the family moved to Ottumwa, Iowa, where he obtained a teaching position, then to Davenport, Iowa. Connie was the eldest of three girls and she was a wonderful older sister. She graduated from Davenport High School in 1959.
Connie then attended the University of Iowa for three years as a medical technology major. She was a member of Gamma Phi Beta sorority, and very active in the activities of the house. She married Doug Larson in December of 1962 and had two children, Scott and Wendy. They moved to Storm Lake in 1965; and they later divorced. Connie completed her education at Buena Vista College in Storm Lake. She obtained employment at the Buena Vista County Hospital where she worked in physical therapy.
Connie married John P. Duffy on January 5, 1990 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Storm Lake. Connie then took some time off from her employment and studied to become a certified physical therapy assistant. She obtained her certification and then worked for Sports Rehab in Storm Lake, after which she worked for a national firm called NovaCare doing physical therapy in nursing homes in northwest Iowa.
Connie liked to travel; Connie and John went on a lot of trips to California, especially in the winter to Arcadia, California. They also traveled to the San Diego area in the summertime to be at DelMar. Connie liked to attend the thoroughbred horse races at those locations.
Connie also liked to travel in the upper Midwest, especially into northern Minnesota, northern Wisconsin, northern Michigan, and especially to Bayfield, Wisconsin on Lake Superior. She also liked to travel through Iowa, into Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri and Arkansas, always stopping at her favorite locations.
Connie enjoyed her new home at Casino Beach, built in 1995. She agreed that John could have a dog at their new house. At first she was not enthused about having a dog, but the more time she spent with the dog the more she liked the dog and the dog liked her. She liked having the dog in the house for security.
Connie enjoyed spending time with her only grandson, Ryan Arthur. He spent a lot of time with her and she liked to do things with him and for him.
Connie spent the last four years of her life at Methodist Manor and was unable to do many of the things she enjoyed prior to that time.
Connie was preceded in death by her parents, Melvin Bell and Ann Bell.
She is survived by her husband, John, of Storm Lake, her son, Scott Larson (Missy Kruse) and daughter, Wendy (Kevin) Lehman, all of Carroll, Iowa, and grandson, Ryan Arthur, of Omaha, Nebraska; two sisters, Muriel Nyblom of Jordan, Minnesota, and Carolyn Eggers of Denver, Colorado, several nephews, and one brother-in-law, Joe and his wife Carolee Duffy of Greenfield, Indiana.
THIS IS AN EMAIL SENT OUT FROM THE IOWA FUNERAL DIRECTORS ASSOCIATION. THIS IS JUST A GUIDELINE AND SOME INFORMATION, OBVIOUSLY THIS WHOLE THING IS EVOLVING QUICKLY AND CONCERNS ARE CHANGING RAPIDLY. WE WILL TRY TO APPRISE OUR CITIZENS OF UPDATES AS WE GET THEM, BUT WE FELT IT IMPORTANT TO SHARE THIS INFORMATION AT THE PRESENT TIME. ROGER & PAT, ROMAN & SHELBY.
To Our Iowa Communities,
Assisting families and friends with loss is our privilege and honor as funeral directors. Given the reality of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to know that funeral directors throughout Iowa are taking precautions to limit exposure to the coronavirus. We are still operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week making certain that those entrusted to our care and the families we serve are receiving uninterrupted service and attention, regardless of the cause of death.
In the last days and weeks, the Iowa Funeral Directors Association has been in regular contact with numerous state and federal agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and the Iowa Department of Public Health, ensuring that the information our member funeral homes receive is as current as possible. Funeral homes are in regular contact with local officials ensuring that public welfare is a primary concern. In addition, as part of our annual license renewal, we participate in public health and safety training.
As health officials have indicated, one way to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus is through limiting public gatherings. As of March 15, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has limited gatherings to 50 people or less for the next eight weeks.
Our sympathies go out to anyone who has the additional burden of grief and loss during this time, and we are here to guide each family with their particular needs on an individual basis. We encourage bereaved families to work with their funeral director to create meaningful services that fall within the governor’s emergency order of limiting large public gatherings.
By now, you are aware that another way to limit the spread of the virus is to refrain from going out in public if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or are feeling unwell. Please stay home to not only speed your recovery and prevent spreading illness, but to also protect those in high-risk groups. If you are experiencing a cough, fever, or shortness of breath, we encourage you to not attend funeral services. Reach out to the funeral home handling services and they will be willing to share your sympathies with the family of the deceased and they may also offer some other options to let the bereaved know that you support and care for them during this difficult time.
We are your neighbors and friends. Funeral directors live and work in your communities and we take the impact of this pandemic seriously.
Please know that above all, we are committed to the families we serve. We remain focused on maintaining high standards and ethical practices as we serve the dead and bereaved with the health and well-being of our communities in mind as we move forward together in the coming weeks and months.
Charles J. Yoder President
On Behalf of the Members of the Iowa Funeral Directors Association
The Iowa Funeral Directors Association is the funeral directors’ professional community and is the recognized voice and resource for information on issues affecting the funeral service profession as well as the bereaved community that we are honored to serve in the many cities throughout Iowa.
Since the Iowa Funeral Directors Association’s inception in 1880, the Association has striven to be a technologically advanced and centralized resource for IFDA members and the Iowa families they serve. IFDA is an advocate of funeral service interests to the community, industry, government and the profession. Today, IFDA represents over 700 Iowa licensed funeral directors – nearly 85 percent of those licensed in Iowa – and 425 funeral home establishments throughout the state.
Funeral services for Lois R. Smith, 89, of Aurelia, will be Monday, March 2, 2020 at 10:30 A.M. at the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia with Pastor Kim Dewey and Pastor Henrietta Klarenbeek officiating. Visitation will be Sunday from 2:00 to 4:00 P.M. at the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia. Burial will be at Afton Township Cemetery, rural Cherokee. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements. In lieu of flowers memorials may be directed to the First United Methodist Church.
Lois Rachel Ritter was born February 4, 1931 at Washta, Iowa, the daughter of Fred and Maudie (Orton) Ritter. She graduated from Cherokee High School in 1948. On February 18, 1950 Lois was united in marriage to Henry Merle Smith at the Little Brown Church in Nashua, Iowa. In her later years she worked part-time for Pam Allen at The Village Boutique in Aurelia, and going out of town shopping for fabric with Geneva Buenger. She was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia.
Lois died Tuesday, February 25, 2020 at Accura Healthcare in Aurelia.
Preceding Lois in death were her parents, her husband Merle on October 19, 2003, two sisters; Leota Hohlier and Deve Killian, two brothers; Verl and wife Twyla Ritter and Jerry Ritter, one sister-in-law, Betty Scholke, and one brother-in-law, Franklin Smith.
Survivors include three children; Paula and her husband Rick Anderson of Los Lunas, NM, Dana and his wife Barb Smith of Aurelia, and Cameron and his wife Nora Smith of Placitas, NM. Also surviving are eight grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren, one brother, Evan and his wife Dar Ritter of Trenton, TX, one brother-in-law Gordon Scholke, three sisters-in-law; Carol Smith, Linda and husband Al Appletoft, and Carol Ritter, many nieces and nephews and other relatives and friends.
Funeral services for Viola Allen, 96, of Aurelia will be Tuesday, January 21, 2020 at 11:00 A.M. at the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia with Pastor Kim Dewey officiating. Burial will be at Pleasant Hill Cemetery, rural Aurelia. Visitation will be Monday, January 20th, from 5-7Pm at the church with the family present. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Viola Lorene Fierk was born May 24, 1923 in Aurelia, Iowa, the daughter of Albert and Lillie (Demarest) Fierk. She attended school in Aurelia graduating from Aurelia High School in 1941. Following graduation she worked as a linotype operator for newspapers in Aurelia, Cherokee and Storm Lake. On July 4, 1943 she was united in marriage to Edgar D. Allen at the Congregational Church in Aurelia. They farmed north of Aurelia until 1959 at which time they moved into town in Aurelia. Viola worked as a secretary for Harlan Mohn’s law firm in Aurelia and at the Mental Health Institute Cherokee before becoming the Aurelia Jr. High/Elementary School Secretary until her retirement. Edgar and Viola wintered in Arizona for 20 years following their retirement.
Viola was an active member of the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia. She enjoyed golf, teaching the Windows operating system on computers and knitting; having knit over 100 custom Christmas stockings for family and friends. Until recently she actively kept up with family and friends with her iPad texting, using Facebook and sending emails.
Viola passed away Wednesday, January 15, 2020 at Accura Healthcare in Aurelia.
Preceding Vi in death were her parents, her husband Edgar on November 20, 2010, one brother, Vernon Fierk and his wife Pauline, and three sisters; Ruth and her husband Arnold Faber, Mary and her husband Clyde Leeds, and Dorothy and her husband Annual “Simmy” Byerly, one brother-in-law, Russel his wife Kathleen Allen, and one sister-in-law, Celesta and her husband Dick Edwards.
Survivors include three children; Michael and his wife Judy Allen of Kingsley, Denise Twiford and her friend Kent Husted of Sioux City, and David and his wife Linda of San Antonio, TX. Also surviving are nine grandchildren; Tara and husband Scott Sobek, Ben and wife Kerri Edwards, Jennifer Zimmerman, Shawn and wife Elizabeth Twiford, Chris and wife Faye Allen, Doug and wife Sherry Allen, Danielle and husband Fred Jackson, Alison Spangler, Kevin and wife Stevi Spangler, 18 great-grandchildren, 3 great great-grandchildren, many nieces and nephews and other relatives and friends.
Funeral services for Eddie L. Benson, 72, of Aurelia, will be Saturday, January 4, 2020, at 11:00 A.M., at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Aurelia, with Pastor Derek Evans officiating. Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 Friday at the St. Paul Lutheran Church. A memorial fund has been established. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Eddie Lynn Benson was born on October 3, 1947, in Cherokee, Iowa, the son of Clifford and Frances (Booth) Benson. He attended school in Aurelia and graduated from the Aurelia High School in 1966. Ed worked with his father at Benson Trucking. On January 20, 1968, he married Jeanine Rath at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Aurelia. Later he operated Vans by Benson, owned and operated the Back Bar Steakhouse in Aurelia for 20 years, sold cars for Brown Chevrolet in Cherokee, and operated Benson Auto Sales at his acreage in Aurelia.
Ed was a member of St. Paul Lutheran Church, served on the Aurelia Volunteer Fire Department from April 13, 1970 until he retired on April 18, 1980. Ed purchased and remodeled many homes in Aurelia. He enjoyed his family and grandchildren, fishing, the Chicago Bears and the Atlanta Braves, Morningside College football, golf, restoring cars and other items, and took pride in his yard.
Ed died Wednesday, December 31, 2019 at the Lakeside Hospital in Omaha, NE.
Preceding Ed in death were his parents, two brothers; Larry Benson and Charles (CB) Benson, and one nephew, Mark Benson.
Survivors include his wife Jeanine Benson of Aurelia, two sons; Chad and his wife Lisa Benson of Cedar Falls, IA, and their children; Tyler, Halle and Trevor, and Chris and his wife Karen Benson of Ft. Collins, CO, and their children; Jessica, Emilee and fiancé Jake Stander, and Gabrielle. Also surviving are one brother, Jimmie Rae and his wife Shelli Benson of Green, IA, two sisters-in-law; Jeanette (Moosie) Benson and Mavis Yunge both of Aurelia, his mother-in-law, Loretta Rath of Aurelia, four sisters-in-law and their husbands; Corinne and Jim Bengtson of Aurelia, Anne and Drew Coombs of Nunn, CO, Barb and Dan Huseman and Lisa and Mark Cmelik all of Aurelia, many nieces and nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Funeral services for Joyce M. Cougill, 82, of Aurelia, will be 10:30 A.M. Friday, December 27, 2019, at the First Church of Christ in Cherokee, with Pastor David Hall officiating. Visitation will be Thursday, December 26, from 5:00 P. M. to 7:00 P.M. at the church. Burial will be in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, rural Aurelia.
Joyce Marie Klumpp, the daughter of William Edward and Virginia Driscilla “Jennie” (Phelan) Klumpp, was born February 14, 1937, on a farm near Aurelia, Iowa. She was a genuine sweetheart. Joyce attended school in the Aurelia Community School District and graduated from Aurelia High School in 1954. Joyce was baptized on February 14, 1968, at the First Church of Christ in Cherokee, where she remained a member. Joyce spent the majority of her life in the Aurelia community.
Joyce married William Royce Cougill on September 30, 1956, at the Methodist Church in Webb, Iowa. Their first home was a trailer home as Royce worked road construction for Iowa Road Builders. In 1957, the couple returned to Aurelia where Royce worked for Carlson Texaco and drove truck at night for Benson Trucking. In 1959, Royce and Joyce purchased their permanent home in Aurelia. Royce and Joyce raised five children in this home: Debra Diane, Tamra June, Kimberly Kay, Brenda Joyce, and William Ryan. Joyce thoroughly enjoyed her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. As time passed, she proudly took on the title of “Grandma Snow White.” Joyce supported and assisted Royce in his many business adventures and provided a good home for her family. She especially enjoyed working with her flowers, attending activities of her children and grandchildren when possible, preparing for holidays, having her family come home for Christmas, and caring for her family and pets. She will be remembered for all of her hard work, her yummy mashed potatoes, and many other tasty dishes that she prepared for family and guests. She never knew a stranger; she could talk to anyone.
Joyce’s work history included working as a bookkeeper for Howell Motor and J. I. Case Implement and later for Royce’s Texaco and Cougill Trucking, all of Aurelia. When Royce had a heart attack in December of 1977, she baby-sat children in her home as he recovered. Her final employment was working for Jensen Insurance of Aurelia where she worked as a secretary for 31 years and retired on March 14, 2012. She always enjoyed working with the public.
Joyce died Saturday, December 21, 2019, at UnityPoint Health St. Luke’s in Sioux City, IA.
Preceding Joyce in death were her parents, one grandson Spenser Nelson, three brothers; Ronald James Klumpp in infancy, Donald Klumpp, and Vernon Klumpp, and her sister Geraldine (Klumpp) Seggerman to whom she was close.
Left to cherish her memory are her husband Royce of Aurelia, her daughters: Debra and her husband Randy Galvin of Early, IA, Tamra and her husband Curt Nelson of Johnston, IA, Kimberly and her husband Matthew Warnke of Arnolds Park, IA, Brenda and her husband Frank Huseman of Manson, IA, and Bill and his wife Sheila Cougill of Early, IA; her grandchildren; Heath and wife Jenny Galvin of Grimes, Sara Nelson of Maquoketa, Tim and wife Ashley Galvin of Aurelia, Evan Huseman of Des Moines, Cody and wife Jana Galvin of Des Moines, Jonathan and his wife Shelby Nelson of Urbandale, Taylor and his wife Olivia Huseman of Milford, and Ryan Cougill and Jacob Cougill of Early, and her great-grandchildren: Avery, Aiden, and Hunter Galvin, Grant Nelson, Maddox, Kutler, and Kolby Galvin, and Sullivan Galvin. Also surviving are her sister Barbara Templeman of Holstein, four sisters-in-law; Elizabeth and husband John Tuttle of Cherokee, Bonnie and husband Gary Lewis of Aurelia, Juanita Graybill of Sioux City, and Peg Carsten of Whiting, and many nieces, nephews, and friends.
Funeral services for Marilyn Jean Glienke, 91, of Aurelia, will be Wednesday, December 4, 2019, at 10:30 A.M., at the St. John Lutheran Church in Hanover, with Pastor Zachary Viggers officiating. Burial will be at the Church Cemetery. Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 Tuesday at the St. John Lutheran Church in Hanover. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Marilyn Jean North was born on September 20, 1928, near Vail, Iowa. The daughter of Lacey C. and Mary E. (Slater) North. She attended country school and graduated from Denison High School in 1947. Marilyn then attended college for one year to receive her teaching certificate, and then taught at East Boyer #6 for two years. She was united in marriage to Albert William Glienke on November 17, 1949 at the Presbyterian Church in Denison, Iowa. They are the parents of David, Terry, Julie, and Lacey. They farmed and fed cattle in Diamond Center Township south of Aurelia. She was employed as a hospice volunteer and care giver from 1986 through 1995. Marilyn loved caring for her family, children, neighbors and the elderly. She was an excellent baker which she graciously shared, and also enjoyed reading and quilting. Marilyn was a member of St. John Lutheran Church in Hanover where she had been a Sunday School Teacher and an active member of LWML.
Marilyn died Saturday, November 30, 2019 at the Methodist Manor Retirement Community in Storm Lake, IA where she had been a resident since June 5, 2018
Preceding Marilyn in death were her parents, husband Albert on June 24, 2018, daughter, Julie and her husband Robert Lyons, one brother, Craig North, sisters, Carolyn North, Lillian North, Georgia Heckman, Mary Jean and husband Francis Rasmussen, and Gladys North, four brothers-in-law; Dr. Frank Brewster, Henry and his wife Lorraine Glienke, Lyle Lichtenberg and Dwaine Hinkeldey. four sisters-in-law; Emma Glienke, Esther Lussman and her husband Harold, Lydia Christensen and husband Harold, and Alvina Schmidt.
Survivors include her three sons; David of Alta, Terry and his wife Rhonda of Cherokee, and Lacey and Tami of Aurelia, nine grandchildren; Mark and his wife Keila Glienke, Scott and his wife Alisa Glienke, Jeffrey and Amy Glienke, Molly and her husband Aaron Tucker, Amy and her husband Mitch Loucks, Matthew Glienke, Tessa and her husband Jacob Doerkson, Jacob Glienke, and Maxwell Glienke, nineteen great-grandchildren; Dalton, Alyssa, Tyler, Chayce, Jack, Jordyn, Camryn, Makaelyn, Tayven, Daenon, Zachary, Zoey, Bryson, Jaxlynn, Trenton, Trevor, Kash, Jovi, Eve and Mason. Also surviving are one sister, Frances Brewster of Leavenworth, KS, four brothers-in-law; Ernie and his wife Beverly Glienke of Aurelia, Herman and his wife Delores Glienke of Miami Springs, FL, Martin and his wife Jeanne Glienke of Alta, and Willard Schmidt of Alta, two sisters-in-law; Dorothy Hinkeldey and Marie Lichtenberg both of Alta, many nieces and nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Memorial services for Charles (CB) Benson, age 74, of Aurelia, will be Saturday, October 26, 2019 at the Aurelia Community Center. All are invited to a short service from 3:00-3:15 with the family staying to share memories afterwards until 6:00 pm. Wear a baseball cap and/or your favorite baseball team’s shirt or jersey. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is overseeing the arrangements.
CB took his last at bat on earth on October 22, 2019. A die-hard baseball aficionado and Yankees fan, he was born a St. Patty’s day baby in 1945. (The Yankees went 81-71 in the ‘45 season, finishing 4th in the American League.) C.B. was born in Aurelia to Clifford and Frances (Booth) Benson. He graduated from Aurelia High School in 1963. (The Yankees went 104-57 in the ‘63 season, finishing 1st in the American League.) While 1972 was not a great year for Yankee baseball, it was for C.B. when he married Jeanette (“Moosie”) Peck on July 14. C.B. and Moosie had two kids, Janis (J.J.) and Justin. As fate would have it, J.J. was born on Mickey Mantle’s birthday (only the greatest Yankee ever) and Justin on Tommy Henrich’s (who won five World Series with the Yankees and was a league leading hitter).
Besides baseball, C.B. loved gardening, sweepstakes/games of chance, crossword puzzles, the Iowa Hawkeyes, nature walks and a relaxing night by an outdoor fire. He enjoyed making jokes and had a knack for giving people nicknames.
Survivors include his wife, Moosie of Aurelia, his children J.J. (Steve) Winterhof of Des Moines/Omaha and Justin (Alison) Benson of Sioux City, his grandkids Payton, Maxwell and Hayden Winterhof of Omaha and Luke and Sophie Benson of Sioux City, his brothers and their wives Ed (Jeanine) Benson of Aurelia and Jimmie Ray (Shelli) Benson of Greene, IA, his parents-in-law Lester and Mary Peck of Nampa, ID, his sisters-in-law Joanne (Clyde) Sorensen of Alton, IA, Mary Beth (Greg) Salo of Glenoma, WA, and Dianne Perkins of Nampa, ID, his brother-in law Don (Dawn) Peck of Nampa, ID and many special nieces, nephews and family members. He was proceeded in death by his parents, brother Larry (late husband of Mavis Yunge of Aurelia, IA), nephew Mark Benson and sister-in-law Theresa Foote.
Funeral services for Sharon L. Miller, 51, of Winder, GA, will be Thursday, October 24, 2019, at 10:30 A.M., at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Aurelia, with Pastor Derek Evans officiating. Burial will be at the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, rural Aurelia. Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 Wednesday, with the family present, at the St. Paul Lutheran Church. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Sharon Leigh Peterson was born on July 12, 1968 in at the Buena Vista County Hospital in Storm Lake, IA, the daughter of Kenneth D. and Marjorie (Huseman) Peterson. She was baptized and confirmed at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Aurelia. She graduated from the Aurelia High School in 1986. Growing up she enjoyed the Cherokee Cavaliers Horse Club and 4H, riding her moped, working at the Iowa State Fair, and she loved animals. Sharon was united in marriage to Robert Miller at the farm of her brother and sister-in-law, Bruce and Carla Peterson, in 2010. As an adult Sharon worked as a bank teller, at the lumberyard in Aurelia and in Atlanta, as the manager of a law office, as a truck driver, and doing masonry work with her husband Bob. She enjoyed family vacations with her mother, siblings, nieces, and nephews at Sunset Beach, NC, drinking margaritas or whiskey. Also, listening to classic rock and roll music, fishing, flower and vegetable gardening, her dogs, and her chickens. Sharon enjoyed life to its fullest. She was never afraid to do anything. Exploring new places and things were a joy to her. She loved her home town of Aurelia and her family; she loved to laugh and have fun. The beach was her happy place to squish her toes in the sand and float in the ocean.
Sharon died Friday, October 18, 2019, following a heart attack, at the Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville, GA.
Preceding Sharon in death were her father, Kenneth Peterson, and one brother, Robert Peterson.
Survivors include her husband Robert Miller of Winder, GA, her mother and stepfather; Marjorie and Ron Neulieb of Alta, one brother, Bruce and his wife Carla Peterson of Alta, two sisters; Jayne and her husband Harlan Mortenson of Des Moines, IA, and Kathy Sliz and her partner Jim Burris of Brunson, South Carolina, two brothers-in-law; Mike and his wife Donna Miller and Steve and his wife Debra Miller, two sisters-in-law; Brenda and her Tom Bost, and Marie “Dutch” Nelson, and nieces and nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Memorial services for Rose Mary (Toody) Westphal will be held on Wednesday, October 16, 2019 at 10:30 A.M. at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Cherokee, with Father Mark Stoll officiating. Inurnment will be in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, rural Aurelia. Visitation will be Tuesday, from 5:00 to 7:00 P.M., with the family present, at the Aurelia Community Center. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Rose Mary Pitts was born on February 4, 1934 the daughter of Alvin J. and Mary (Linneman) Pitts, near Cherokee. She graduated from Highview School. On September 19, 1953, Rose Mary married Ervin Carl Westphal at the St. Joseph Catholic Church in Sioux Rapids, IA. Rose Mary was a homemaker and enjoyed her family, cooking, the Iowa Hawkeyes, sports, and her grandchildren.
Rose Mary died Friday, October 11, 2019 at Cherokee Specialty Care in Cherokee.
Preceding Rose Mary in death were her parents, her husband Ervin on August 6, 2001, one son; Darwin on April 22, 2019, two sisters; Imelda McDermott and Shirley Kennedy, and two brothers; Bill Pitts and Jim Pitts.
Survivors include her children; Dave and Becky Westphal of Aurelia, Dian and Ron Anderson of Aurelia, Sue and Tom Herrig of Webb, Brian and Jeanne Westphal of Litchfield, MN, and Tim Westphal of Aurelia. Also surviving are thirteen grandchildren, David and wife Katie Westphal, Molly and husband Adam Stoeffler, Missy Anderson, Justin and wife Jamie Anderson, Cassie and husband Tony Means, Tyler and wife Ashley Herrig, Courtney and husband Jacob DeLoss, Sydney Herrig, Kate and Madison Westphal, Hanna, Alaina, and Breydan Westphal, eighteen great-grandchildren, one sister; Marlys Alldredge of Cherokee, two sisters-in-law, Edith Pitts of Alexandria, MN, and Charmaine Westphal of Humboldt, and many nieces and nephews and other relatives and friends.
Funeral services for Gordon Fett will be Saturday, October 12, 2019 at 9:00 A.M. at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Aurelia with Pastor Derek Evans officiating. Burial will be in the St. John Lutheran Cemetery at Hanover. Visitation will be Friday from 5:00 to 7:00 at the Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia.
Gordon Francis Fett, a teacher extraordinaire, age 92, joined his wife Marilyn in Heaven on October 9, 2019, after faithfully serving his God, country, family and community, he completed his journey and met his Savior, Jesus Christ. A lifelong educator, he was born at his farm home south of Aurelia, Iowa, on April 5, 1927. As an outstanding teacher, Gordon taught mathematics and sciences at the high school and college levels for over fifty years before retiring from Buena Vista University. It was his great pleasure to work with young people and instruct them in the skills they would need in their professional careers, and to prepare them for their lives outside of academia. His passion for being in the classroom motivated him for his entire life and given a choice there is nowhere he would rather have been than in a classroom with a piece of chalk in his hand and facing a blackboard. When Gordon wasn’t in the classroom as an instructor, he was in the classroom as a student. He received his B.S. form Buena Vista College and his M.S. from Ohio State University. In addition, through grants form either the National Science Foundation or the General Electric Fellowship, Gordon also attended the University of Iowa (on four occasions), the University of Michigan (on two occasions), the University of Northern Iowa, Purdue University, the University of Oregon, the University of South Dakota, the University of Washington, and Johns Hopkins University. Courses of study were primarily in mathematics, but also in physics and chemistry. The family was with Gordon for these summer-long studies, and was able to live in different locations and experience different parts of this country — a wonderful opportunity to learn about this great country.
During the summers when Bob and Sue were growing up and Gordon was going to graduate schools, we would do a lot of camping. Our first camping expedition was on our way to Eugene, Oregon in the summer of 1962. We purchased a new tent and all the equipment for camping. We especially liked the summers in Oregon and Seattle, WA because we were close to the ocean and also the mountains. We have many precious memories of setting up camp, hiking, campfires, hot and cold weather, watching the last glow of the gas lantern at lights out in the evening, and keeping bears away with the trusty bear “cabonger”.
Gordon was a lifelong Iowan, graduating from Alta High School, living in Aurelia, Marshalltown, and Storm Lake for nearly hia entire life. He proudly served our country during WWII in the Navy, and the Korean War in the Marines as a hospital corpsman (medic).
Gordon also taught for the U.S. Navy on a program called FACE (programs for Afloat College Education). His first assignment was to an aircraft carrier, the U.S.S. Coral Sea, which was deployed in the Mediterranean Sea. When the ship was in port he toured Marseille and Canes, France, Sicily, Egypt, Izmir, Turkey, Israel. And Tel Aviv. This was in 1988. His second assignment was in 1989 to the western Pacific aboard the
U.S.S. Germantown. In port he toured Okinawa, Hong Kong, Red China, some of the Phillipeans, and Sydney, Australia.
Gordon and Marilyn traveled much of the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii. They also went to Canada, England, the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Lichtenstein, Italy, France, Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. Not bad for two people born and raised in rural Iowa.
Gordon was a man of high integrity, honesty and deep faith. He loved spending time with his family and we thank God for the time he allowed us to treasure him on earth. He lived his whole life with dignity and honor. He made a difference in the lives of untold students at all levels and influenced many to reach out for their dreams. “A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” Gordon touched the lives of all who knew him. He was a provider and protector all the days of his life.
Gordon’s best friend Jack Henneberry was quoted as saying, “To be a gentleman is an accident, to die one is an achievement.” He must have been talking about Gordon. His life will always be honored, cherished, and celebrated by his family and friends.
He was proceeded in death by his parents, August and Mamie Fett; his brothers Harold, Donald, LuVerne, and Robert; his wife of nearly 62 years and love of his life Marilyn; and a grandson Billy Johnson. He is survived by his son Robert and his wife Gretchen Fett of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota; his daughter Susan and her husband David Johnson of Aurelia, Iowa, five grandchildren; Jeremy and wife Nikki Johnson of Ames, IA, Tanner Johnson of Grimes, IA, Kelsey and husband Randy Hale of Aurelia, Christian Fett of Inver Grove Heights, MN, and Daniel and wife Lisa Fett of South St. Paul, MN, and five great-grandchildren; Bella and Cole Johnson, Dayde and Zoey Hale, and Maverick Fett, and will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
David John Lydell was born February 24, 1947, the son of Roy David and Donna Joanna (Rydstrom) Lydell, in Alta, IA. The first five years of his life were spent living on the tenant farm of his grandfather Emil Rydstrom, who his dad farmed with, east of Aurelia. When it was time to start school in Aurelia David and his family moved to Aurelia. He attended school in Aurelia, graduating from the Aurelia High School in 1965.
He attended Nettleton Business Training College in Sioux City, studying accounting, and graduated in 1967. David did not know it at the time but he was to meet his future wife, Darlene Hodges there. On October 16, 1967 David enlisted in the Army, and served in Vietnam. Upon returning from Vietnam he was assigned to Ft. Hood, TX. On January 18, 1970 David and Darlene Phyllis Hodges of Carroll, IA, eloped and were married in a chapel at Fort Hood. He received his honorable discharge on August 19, 1970.
In September of 1970 David and Darlene moved to Minneapolis, MN, where he attended Control Data Institute and graduated, having studied computer programming. He then began his accounting career, which spanned 27 years. They moved to Storm Lake, IA, in July of 1971 where he worked for Vilas & Company in payroll and accounts payable. They also lived in Aurelia with his mother after his dad died in 1972. In May of 1977 David joined the CPA firm of Ryun, Givens & Co. in Cherokee as an accountant. Soon David realized that a diploma in accounting would not be enough. He started taking night classes towards a degree in accounting through Buena Vista College in Storm Lake. In January 1978 he began his over 18 year career at Umthun Trucking Co. at Eagle Grove, IA, as an accountant. They were members of Holmes Lutheran Church in Holmes, IA. In May of 1979 David received his BA degree in accounting and business administration. In 1996 David started working for Genesis Development in Storm Lake as fiscal administrative manager. They moved back to Alta and rejoined Trinity Lutheran.
In May of 1998 David was forced to change careers. He started working for Tyson Retail Deli in Cherokee as a multi-vac operator for the next eleven years. He retired from Tyson in May of 2009.
He was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church, serving on the church council for nine years and as assistant chief usher. David and Darlene served as chairpersons of Meals on Wheels and Lord’s Cupboard for Trinity Lutheran after they retired, and he was on the call committee. David was also on the Alta Park board for four years. They took many trips to county and Iowa State fairs over the years. David and Darlene’s travels took them many places; including all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Japan, the Philippians, Guam, South Vietnam, Australia, and Jamaica. They loved to travel.
David died Friday, July 12, 2019, at Creighton Bergan Hospital in Omaha, NE.
Preceding David in death were his parents, an infant brother, and his wife Darlene on May 2, 2014.
Survivors include brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law; Pat and Kelley Murphy of Humphrey, NE, Pam and Brian Faubion of Lincoln, NE, Judy Thede of Apache Junction, AZ, and David Murphy of Apache Junction, AZ, cousins, nieces and nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Memorial services for Albert R. Engdahl, 94, of Aurelia, will be 12:00 (noon) Saturday, August 3, 2019, at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Cherokee with Pastor Jean Morse officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church. Inurnment will be in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, rural Aurelia. In lieu of flowers memorials may be given to the Bethlehem Lutheran Church. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Albert Raymond Engdahl was born August 30, 1924, the son of Conrad and Helena (Peterson) Engdahl at Aurelia, Iowa. He received his education in Aurelia, graduating from the Aurelia High School in 1942. On January 5, 1950, Albert married Leona Maude Furgason at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Cherokee. Albert farmed, worked for the Farmer’s Elevator, and was a certified applicator of impregnated fertilizer, retiring on August 30, 1988. He was a member of the Bethlehem Lutheran Church, and enjoyed golfing, woodworking, and carpentry, drinking coffee and playing cards with friends, and especially spending time with his children and grandchildren.
Albert died July 1, 2019, at Accura Healthcare of Aurelia.
Preceding Albert in death were his parents; Conrad and Helena, his wife Leona on December 13, 2011, two infants; Lynn Marie and Raymond Allen, one sister, Bertha, and two brothers; Donald and Edwin and his wife Hetty, and one brother-in-law, Harry Lindgren.
Survivors include two children; Joy and her husband Haridas A. Shah of Henderson, NV, and Jody and her husband Michael Pagel of Cedar Rapids, IA, two grandchildren; Ketan and his wife Natalie Shah and Priya Shah both of Denver, CO, one sister, Phyllis Lindgren of Meriden, IA, one brother, Kenneth and his wife Lois Jean Engdahl of Aurelia, nieces, nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Walter Richard “Dick” Kreisel was born on January 1, 1936 at Spencer, IA, the son of Walter F. and Leona (Steffen) Kreisel. He attended Lake Park schools. Dick was united in marriage to Marilyn A. Harmon on July 3, 1953 at the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Spirit Lake, Iowa. Dick worked construction, worked for Harmon Heating in Cherokee, he then owned and operated D & D Construction in Aurelia, and later worked for the City of Aurelia for 20 years, retiring in 1996. He enjoyed spending time with his kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids, camping, fishing, small engine repair, and just tinkering in the garage.
Dick died Sunday, June 30, 2019 with his family at his daughter’s home in Sioux City, IA.
Preceding Dick in death were his parents, one sister, Sharon Wintz and her husband Bill Wintz.
Survivors include his wife Marilyn of Aurelia, six children; Rick and his wife Janet Kreisel of Isle, MN, Randy and his wife Pati Kreisel of Martinsberg, NE, Robin and his wife Tammy Kreisel of Aplington, IA, Becky Kreisel of Aurelia, Bobby Kreisel of Bloomington, MN, and Renee and her husband Rollin Nemitz of Sioux City, and special family; Rick and Dee Keith and family of Aurelia, and Rick and Mary Christensen and family of Merrill, IA, seventeen grandchildren; Carmen and Joe Garcia of Algier, NC, Bobi Jo Madsen and Travis, Omaha, NE, Jodi and Toby Cain of Banks, OR, Jesse and Laci Kreisel of Logan, IA, Mitch and Amy Loucks of Cherokee, Jonathon Kreisel of Sioux City, Jeff McDaniels and Shelly Bennett of Boulder Falls, CO, Justin and Krissy Kreisel of Aplington, Jenny and Jason Smith of Aurelia, Matt Leckband, of Cherokee, Brittany Kreisel of Aplington, Sam Kreisel of Bloomington, MN, Savanah Kreisel and Josh of Omaha, Madison Nemitz of Sioux City, Mallorie Lane of Aurelia, Miranda Nemitz of Sioux City, and Melia Nemitz of Sioux City, and nineteen great-grandchildren. Also surviving are four sisters; Gwen Vetter of Spirit Lake, Rita and Keith Rodenberg of EauClaire, WI, Pam Louscher of Akron, OH, and Connie MacNabb of Omaha, brother-in-law, Melvin and Joan Harmon, brother-in-law Dean Harmon, sister-in-law, Marlene and Virgil Madison, brother-in-law, Larry and Colleen Harmon, many nieces and nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Graveside memorial services for Gary C. Mongan, 82, of Warrenton, VA, formerly of Aurelia, IA, will be held at 10:30 A.M. on Saturday, June 22, 2019, at the Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Aurelia, IA, with Pastor Bruce Rapp officiating. Military Honors will be conducted by the Grashoff-McManus American Legion Post #390 of Aurelia. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Gary Chandler Mongan, the son of Ralph Guy and Marianne Elizabeth (Chandler) Mongan was born October 1, 1936 in Aurelia, Iowa. He attended Aurelia Community School, graduating in 1954. After graduation, Gary enlisted in the US Marines on May 27, 1954. He served for almost seventeen years where he was in radio repair and later traveled the world installing telephones in US Military bases.
On March 26, 1971 Gary was united in marrage to Keiko, and the couple made their home in Warrenton, VA.
Gary died in his home on March 6, 2019.
Left to cherish his memory are his wife Keiko and son Sabo Mongan both of Warrenton, VA. Also survived by five children from his first marriage: Cindy, David, Vickie, Judi, and Ralph, and six grandchildren. Sister, Gayle Brownmiller of Aurelia, two cousins, Sheryl and her husband Jerry Namanny of Cherokee, and Loren and Deb Mongan of Aurelia, and other relatives and friends.
Berniece Spinelli, age 86, of Aurelia, went home to be with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on Tuesday, June 4, 2019 at Mercy One in Sioux City, Iowa.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, June 10, 2019 at 11:00 A.M. at the Aurelia Community Center, with Pastor Adam Costilla officiating. Burial will be in the Good Hope Cemetery, rural Cherokee. Visitation will be Sunday, from 3:00 to 5:00 P.M., with the family present, at the Aurelia Community Center. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Berniece Johnson was born on March 14, 1933 the daughter of Olaf and Flossie (Smith) Johnson in Cherokee. She was one of nine children. Berniece graduated from Wilson High School in Cherokee. On May 1, 1986, Berniece married David Spinelli in Elk Point, South Dakota. She and David lived most of her life in Cherokee and Aurelia.
Later in life Berniece pursued a degree in nursing, graduating from Western Iowa Tech in 1975 as an L.P.N. and began her career at area nursing homes and then at M.H.I. in Cherokee. She also authored a book published in 2013 titled “The Hills Were His Home”, her personal and historical account of the life of her grandfather, Thomas “Barney” Smith. She loved gardening and caring for her many flowers over the years. She loved playing cards with her family and belonged to several Bridge groups in the area, which she especially enjoyed.
Berniece very much enjoyed visits with family and friends which also reflected her love for life, and her Christ-like love for family and others. She had been a member of the Grace Independent Baptist Church in Cherokee for much of her adult life and was now a member of the Independent Baptist Church in Storm Lake. She shared the gospel whenever she had an opportunity and many accepted the Lord through her witness and testimony. It was most important to Berniece that the Lord be glorified in her life, as well as in her death.
Preceding Berniece in death were her parents, two brothers; Russell Johnson and Mitchell Johnson, two sisters; Hazel Anfinson and Marthena Scott, and her beloved son, Donald Allen.
Survivors include her endearing and loving husband of 33 years, David Spinelli of Aurelia, five children; Kathy and her husband Howard Schultze of Cherokee, Terrie Sherman of Paullina, Ron and his wife Connie Allen of Sioux City, Harvey and his wife Kim Allen of Dakota City, NE, and Kevin Greene of Galva, one daughter-in-law, Paula Allen of Plano, TX, three step-children; Debra and her husband Tim Jones of Hensley, AR, Donna Lee Rothlisberger of Ft. Calhoun, NE, and Dean Spinelli of Las Vegas, NV. Also surviving are twelve grandchildren, fourteen great-grandchildren, and four great-great-grandchildren, two brothers; Ivan and wife Cathy Johnson and Jerry and wife Valentyna Johnson, two sisters; Viona Henderson and Marcella and husband Dan Moos, two sisters-in-law, Joan Johnson and Betty Johnson, and many nieces and nephews and other relatives and friends.
We all love her and miss her, yet have much comfort in knowing we will be with her again in our eternal home with Jesus Christ.
Funeral services for Robert L. Sorensen, Sr., 89, of Aurelia will be 10:00 A.M. Friday, May 24, 2019, at the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia, with Pastor Kim Dewey officiating. Burial will be in the Pleasant Hill Cemetery, rural Aurelia. Visitation will be on Thursday from 5:00 until 8:00, with the family present, at the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia. The Redig Funeral Home of Aurelia is in charge of arrangements. In lieu of flowers a memorial fund has been established.
Robert Laverne Sorensen was born March 13, 1930, the son of Fred and Audrey (Koehler) Sorensen at Cherokee, IA. He attended school in Sioux City. Bob served in the U.S. Army. He married Barbara Beckner and they had seven children. On December 6, 1969 Bob married Barbara (Rokes) Nilles in South Sioux City, Nebraska. Together they had one son, Robert L. “Bobby” Sorensen, Jr.
Bob spent most of his working years driving truck for Cliff Benson, Orlo Shank, and Maple Valley Woodshavings in Aurelia. He then retired from First Coop in Alta. Bob was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Aurelia. He enjoyed fishing, camping, and eating out. His greatest joy was spending time with his family.
Bob died Tuesday, May 21, 2019, at the Sunset Knoll Care & Rehab Center in Aurelia.
Preceding Bob in death were his parents, one daughter, Deborah, two sons; Robert Jr. “Bobby” Sorensen and Rodney Sorensen, and one sister, Donna Reed.
Survivors include his wife, Barbara of Aurelia, five children; Rick Sorensen of Sioux City, IA, and Ron (Clyde) and his wife Jodi Sorensen of Alton, IA, Rhonda and husband Doyle Cowell of Dickens, IA, Roxy and her husband Joe Rose of Redwood Falls, MN, and Ranae Steuk of Spencer, IA, and four step-children; Jim and his wife Amy Nilles of Merrill, IA, Dale and his wife Jan Nilles of Las Vegas, NV, Becky Nilles of Springdale, AK, and Ray Nilles of Cherokee, IA. Also surviving are nine grandchildren, fifteen step-grandchildren, thirty great-grandchildren, one sister, Barbara Sorensen of Sioux City, one brother, Fred Sorensen, Jr. and his wife Shirley of Primgahr, and one brother-in-law, Beryl Reed, nieces, and nephews.
Rodney Lee Sorensen, 56, died unexpectedly on Friday, May 10th, 2019 in Denver, Colorado. A private family service will take place at a later date. Memorials may be sent to the family at PO Box 535, Aurelia, IA.
Rodney was born on August 7, 1962 in Alta, Iowa. He lived in Aurelia, Iowa and graduated from the Aurelia High School in 1980. Shortly after graduation Rodney went to live in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He was employed by a siding company installing residential siding for many years.
Rodney is survived by his son, Reese (Trish) Sorensen, and granddaughter, Carmen Sorensen all of Colorado Springs CO, father and step-mother, Robert and Barbara Sorensen of Aurelia, mother, Barbara (Lyle) Downs of Elk Point, SD, brothers; Rick Sorensen of Sioux City, IA, and Ron (Jodi) Sorensen of Alton, IA, sisters; Rhonda (Doyle) Cowell of Dickens, IA, Roxy (Joe) Rose of Redwood Falls, MN, and Ranae Steuk of Spencer, IA, step-siblings; Jim (Amy) Nilles of Merrill, IA, Dale (Jan) Nilles of Las Vegas, NV, Becky Nilles of Springdale, AK, and Ray Nilles of Cherokee, IA, and many cousins, nieces, and nephews.
Rodney is preceded in death by a sister, Deborah Sorensen, a brother, Robert Sorensen, Jr., paternal grandparents, Fred and Audrey Sorensen, and special friend, Carmen Ramos.
Graveside services for Dennis D. Reilly, 70, of Baxter, Iowa, formerly of Aurelia, will be held Saturday, May 25, 2019, at 10:00 A.M. at the Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Aurelia, with Pastor Bruce Rapp officiating. Military Honors will be presented by the L. A. Wescott Post #2253 of the VFW of Cherokee and the Grashoff-McManus American Legion Post #390 of Aurelia. Following the committal service family and friends are invited to a time of remembrance at The Tap in Aurelia. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of the arrangements.
Dennis Dean Reilly was born May 18, 1948 the son of Robert Payne and Marian Adeline (Will) Reilly in Sioux City, IA. He graduated from the Aurelia High School in 1966. After graduation he enlisted in the Marines. He served in Viet Nam. After his honorable discharge he worked as a hog buyer for IBP which later became Tyson. He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends.
Preceding Dennis in death were his parents, Bob and Marian Reilly.
Dennis died at his home very unexpectedly on May 9, 2019.
Survivors include his three children; Ben and his wife Elise Reilly and their children Camron, Adeline, Payne, and Sheldon of Rosebud, MT, Robert Reilly and Megan Hutchinson and their daughter Hadley of Kailua, HI, and Stephanie Reilly of Baxter, IA, one sister, Linda and her husband Bob Kelch of Mesa, AZ, and one brother, Larry and his wife Shanda Reilly of Aurelia, IA. Also surviving are three aunts; Joann and her husband George Pithan and JoAnn Swoboda all of Sioux City, IA, and Eveline Will of Fort Dodge, IA , nieces, nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Funeral services for Ray J. Vring, 81, of Alta, will be held Wednesday, April 17, 2019, at 10:30 A.M. at the Church of Christ in Alta, with Pastor Ben Michaels officiating. Burial will be in the St. John Lutheran Cemetery, Hanover, IA. Visitation will be Tuesday, from 5:00 to 8:00 P.M., with the family present from 6:00 to 8:00, at the church. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Ray John Vring was born January 19, 1938 the son of John Dietrich and Edna Marie (Hustedt) Vring at home north of Aurelia in Afton Township, Cherokee County. He attended school in Aurelia and Alta.
On June 22nd, 1962 Ray was united in marriage to Carolyn Dirks in Jackson, MN.
Ray was a farmer all of his life. He had a number of side jobs over the years including; delivering the rural Des Moines Register for 24 years and the Storm Lake Advertiser for eleven years, mowing lawns and scooping snow. Ray enjoyed collecting Farmall International memorabilia, and was an avid collector of caps. He enjoyed going to parades with his children and grandchildren. He was a member of the Church of Christ in Alta.
Ray was a survivor of colorectal cancer since 2010. He died of COPD on Sunday, April 14, 2019, with his family at his side at his home in Alta.
Preceding Ray in death were his parents, his wife Carolyn in 1999, one brother, Harry Milton Vring in 1936 in infancy, father-in-law, Harold Dirks, and two sons-in-law; Michael Snedeker, and Howard Dowdy.
Survivors include seven children; Mary Dowdy of Aurelia, Judy Snedeker of Storm Lake, John and Kelley Vring of Aurelia, Diane Vring of Alta, Michelle and Scott Gaes of Sergeant Bluff, Stephanie Vring and Michael Schwint of Storm Lake, and JoAnn Foley and Clint DeVore of Storm Lake, fifteen grandchildren, and sixteen great-grand-children. Also surviving are his mother-in-law, Florence Dirks of Round Rock, TX, three brothers-in-law; Darold and Janice Dirks of Round Rock, TX, Bob Dirks of Spencer, and Lynn and Deb Dirks of Alta, and one sister-in-law, Barb Lehman of Ruthven, and other relatives and friends.
Donald Dean Blake was born July 26, 1931, the son of John D. and Agnes (Scott) Blake at Cherokee, IA. He attended Afton Township School number 2 and Aurelia Community School, graduating in 1949.
In January of 1951 Don enlisted in the United States Air Force, serving in Korea during the Korean War in the 5th Air Force with the 18th Fighter-Bomber Wing. He was a senior aircraft mechanic working mostly on C-47 aircraft. He received the Korean Service Medal, United Nations Service Medal, National Defense Medal and the South Korean Presidential Unit Citation. In June of 2000 he received the Korean War 50th Anniversary Medal from the President of South Korea. After being honorably discharged from the United States Air Force Don served five years in the United States Air Force Reserve.
On June 1st, 1955, Don married Annette Howe at the Woodlawn Christian Church in Lake City, Iowa. They had been married 63 years. They had farmed and lived their entire married life on the Blake family farm north of Aurelia.
Don had a great love for flying. He held a Private Pilot Certificate and an Aircraft Mechanic Airframe and Powerplant Certificate and held an F.A.A. Inspection Authorization. He knew he wanted to be a pilot from the time his neighbor, Victor Carlson, gave him his first ride in his Aeronca Defender at age 15. He worked on aircraft for many years at the Cherokee Municipal Airport and in his shop on the farm. Don and Annette spent many hours in the air in their Piper Tri-Pacers. Don gave many people their first airplane ride.
Don was a member of the Grashoff-McManus American Legion Post #390 of Aurelia for over 50 years, and the Cherokee VFW Post 2253.
Over the years Don had belonged to the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, the Experimental Aircraft Association, and the Cherokee Flying Club. Don loved vacationing with this family in the Ozarks. After retirement Don spent many hours on the computer and enjoyed flying his Microsoft Flight Simulator.
Don died Tuesday, April 2, 2019, at Cherokee Specialty Care in Cherokee, Iowa.
Preceding Don in death were his parents, two brothers; Rolan and Russell, one sister; Muriel Hasenwinkel, Annette’s parents; Dewey and Tillie (Wilkie) Howe, three brothers-in-law; Wilmer Anderson, Raymond Hasenwinkel, and Harold Sommerfeld, and four sisters-in-law; Elizabeth Sommerfeld, Dorothy Wood, Peggy Blake and Donna Blake.
Survivors include his wife, Annette, three children; Debbie and her husband Arthur Owens of Ankeny, IA, Laurie and her husband Kevin Huss of Alta, and Mike and his wife Diane Blake of Aurelia. Also surviving are two grandchildren; Brent and his wife Sarah Lytle of Aurelia and Brooke and her husband Mark Robb of West Des Moines, five step-grandchildren; Ryan and his wife Joy Harrison of Sioux Falls, SD, Dustin and his wife Amanda Harrison of Omaha, NE, Jason and his wife Courtney Huss of Chapman, KS, Jennifer and her husband Justin Kjolhede of West Point, NE, and Josh and his wife Jessica Huss of Storm Lake, six great-grandchildren, eleven step-great-grandchildren, one sister, Eleanor Anderson of Aurelia, one brother-in-law, Gary Wood of Columbus, IN, and other relatives and friends.
Private family services for Wilbert D. Schwanz, 84 of Aurelia, formerly of Alta, will be held at a later date. The Redig Funeral Home in Aurelia is in charge of arrangements.
Wilbert Dean Schwanz was born at Schaller, Iowa, the son of Andrew and Bessie (Welding) Schwanz on May 26, 1934. He attended school and graduated at Schaller.
On April 17, 1956 Wilbert married Lila Grienke at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Alta. This union was blessed with three children; Brenda, Brian, and Rhonda. He worked at HyGrade in Storm Lake and later at the Alta Lumber Yard. He enjoyed woodworking, cars, and tractors.
Wilbert died Monday, January 28, 2019 at Unity Point Health St. Luke’s in Sioux City, Iowa.
Preceding Wilbert in death were his parents, one daughter, Brenda (Schwanz) Matsen, one brother and his wife, LeRoy and Pearl Schwanz, one sister Betty and her husband;, Marvin Sands, and seven half-brothers and sisters and their spouses; Edwin and Louise Schwanz, Clarence and Irene Schwanz, Lester and Marie Schwanz, Sally and Carl Lamuck, Harry and Mildred Schwanz, Paul and Marie Schwanz, and Dorothy and Donald Detterman.
Survivors include his wife Lila of Aurelia, two children; Brian and his wife Colleen Schwanz of Alta, and Rhonda and her husband Tony Coombs of Aurelia, son-in-law Jess Matsen of SanTan Valley, AZ, three grandchildren; Jennifer and her husband Chad Curtis of Arlington Heights, IL, Ashley and her husband CJ OBrion of Chandler, AZ, and Miranda and her husband Chris Sliefert of Sac City, IA, and six great-grandchildren; Spencer and Lauren Curtis, Taylor and Avery OBrion, and Jaxsen and Bryson Sliefert. Also surviving are one sister-in-law; JoAnn Lichter of Omaha, NE, one brother-in-law; Robert and his wife Jo Grienke of Alta, nieces and nephews and other relatives and friends.