Category Archives: Uncategorized

Cynthia Bierman

Cynthia Bierman, the daughter of Lee and Gladys (Hardaway) King, was born May 24, 1953 at Jefferson, Iowa and joined her sistren angels very unexpectedly on March 17, 2020 at the Methodist Medical Center in Des Moines. She lived her life to the age of 66 years, 9 months and 23 days.

Cynthia was raised on a farm north of Churdan. She loved farm life and was active in 4-H. She fondly remembered the frequent visits from numerous cousins, and a family trip to Alaska. Cynthia attended Paton-Churdan High School and graduated in the class of 1971. She then attended AIB Business College in Des Moines and began her 48-year career in insurance and investments, retiring just a week before her death.

On February 27, 1988, Cynthia King was united in marriage to Calvin Bierman of Des Moines at the United Methodist Church in Churdan. For their honeymoon, they took the first of several trips to Walt Disney World. In later years, they traveled to Los Angeles and discovered the joy of cruising to the Caribbean. Cynthia was an avid reader of romance novels and crime fiction. She enjoyed attending plays and traveling to concerts across the Midwest. Cynthia also shared her love of Christmas and would listen to holiday music all year long.

Cynthia was a life long member of the Churdan United Methodist Church and she and Calvin attended many of the activities and dinners held at the church.

Cynthia is survived by her loving husband, Calvin, a brother, Gary King of Urbandale, a sister, Darlene (Jim) Woltz of Pharr, Texas, sister-in-law, Karla King of Churdan, several nieces and nephews and a host of friends. Those who preceded her were her parents, brother, Wayne King and sister-in-law Denise King.

A graveside service was held at 2:00 P.M. Tuesday, March 24th at the Highland Township Cemetery in Churdan with Rev. David Arulnathan officiating. A special song of Cynthia’s “Peace in the Valley” was played at the close of the service.

Serving as casket bearers were Christopher King, Mitchel King, Taylor King. Dan Towers, George Naylor, John Guess and Mike Campiano.

A celebration of Cynthia’s life will be held at a later date.

Kay Ramaekers

Funeral services for Kay Ramaekers, 82, of Jefferson, will be announced and held at a later date.  Kay passed away on Sunday in Des Moines.

Survivors include her husband, Walter (Ozzie), a daughter, Laura Knsop of Iowa City and two sons; Joe of Rolfe and Rob of Urbandale.

The Brown Funeral Home of Jefferson is assisting the family.


Richard Mackey

              Richard (Dick) Mackey, the son of Joseph and Florentina (Tacke) Mackey, was born August 27, 1939 at Carroll, Iowa and departed this life March 14, 2020 at the Carroll Health Care Center in Carroll, Iowa. He lived his life to the age of 80 years, 6 month and 17 days.

Dick grew up in Churdan and graduated from the Churdan High School in the Class of 1957. During his high school years, Dick drove trucks for his father’s trucking company. After graduation, Dick joined the United States Army and served for two years. He returned to Churdan and continued driving trucks for his father. On June 19, 1971, Richard Mackey was united in marriage to Colleen Florke at St. Columbkille Catholic Church in Churdan. Three children were born to this union. After his father retired from the trucking business, Dick worked for a time for Macke Motors in Lake City and then returned to driving throughout the county for various trucking companies. Being away driving took a toll on Dick and Colleen’s marriage and they were divorced. They maintained a close relationship during the years and Colleen cared for Dick’s needs throughout his final years.

Dick was a member of St. Columbkille Catholic Church. When not driving, Dick enjoyed going to his children’s sporting activities.

Dick is survived by his children and grand-children; Todd (Michelle) Mackey of Ankeny and their children; Brooke, Mackenzie and Carson, Shawn (Michelle) Mackey of Ankeny and their children; Mikala, Mikena and Mya and Heather Mackey Steimel and her children; Tessa and Kinnick and two brothers, Danny of Carroll and Al Hutton of Sioux City. Those who preceded in death were his parents.

A celebration of Dick’s life followed by a graveside service at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cemetery at a later date to be announced.
Honorary casket bearers were Brett Adams, Kelly Ryan, Kyle Daniels, Daniel Hutton, Joe Towers and Jason Stauffer.

Gordon Kanke

A visitation for Gordon Kanke, 81, of Jefferson will be held from 1:00 to 2:00 PM Saturday at the Brown Funeral Home in Jefferson with an Elks Memorial Service at 1:45 followed by military honors.

Survivors include his son, Bill Kanke of St. Joseph, MO. and daughter, Brenda Poole of Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

Memorials are suggested to be given in Gordon’s name to the Elks National Foundation and send to the Jefferson Elks Lodge #2306 in Jefferson or left at the funeral home.



               Gordon Kanke, the son of Glenn and Irene (Vogler) Kanke, was born January 30, 1938 at Vinton, Iowa and passed from this life March 7, 2020 at his home in Jefferson, Iowa. He lived his life to the age of 81 years, 1 month and 7 days.

Gordy graduated from high school in 1956 and joined the United States Air Force where he served for two years. After his discharge, Gordy moved to California where he lived for three years and drove cars in stockcar races. He was married to Linda Lockwood and they had a daughter, Sherry. They were later divorced. Gordy moved back to Iowa and lived in the Cedar Rapids area where he worked for the Wilbert Burial Vault Company for 20 years. In 1964, Gordy was married to Kathleen Gooden and they raised three children; Kevin, Bill and Brenda. Kathleen and Gordy were later divorced. Gordy than   worked for Williams Gas Co. as a pipeline supervisor and lived in Hartley, Iowa. In 1979, Gordy was married to Bernice Hervey and she later died of cancer. Gordy retired in 1994 and worked part time for farmers in the Hartley area. While working in Boone, Iowa, Gordy met Karen Schwarz and they struck up a relationship. Karen and Gordy later moved to Hartley where they made their home together until 2015 when the moved to Jefferson. Karen passed away in October of 2019.

During his life, Gordy enjoyed fishing, playing golf and pool, bowling and camping. While with Karen, they enjoyed traveling throughout the continental U.S.A. and took a cruise to Alaska. He enjoyed spending many hours a week in his basement making fishing lures that were sold by a sporting goods company. While in Jefferson, Gordy joined the Jefferson Elks Lodge #2306 and enjoyed visiting with the members and especially enjoyed playing in a 25cent poker group on Thursday afternoons.

A visitation to celebrate Gordy’s life was held Saturday, March 14th, from 1:00 to 2:00 PM at the Brown Funeral Home in Jefferson where an Elks Memorial Service was held at 1:45 PM followed by Military Honors conducted by the Offit Air Force Base Honor Guard. Burial will be made in the Tipton Masonic Cemetery in Tipton, Iowa at a later date.

Surviving Gordy were his children; Bill (Lori) Kanke of Saint Joseph, MO., Brenda (Greg) Poole of Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, grandchildren; Gabriel and Alan Perenick, Ethan (Chelsea), Matthew, Phillip Kanke and Sara and Dayle Poole, great-grandchildren; Elizabeth, Jude and Benjamin Kanke and Jenna Strable, a brother, Richard (Colleen) Kanke of Orlando, FL., and a sister, Karen (Jack) James of Boone, N.C., step-children, Amy (Brian) Strable of Ankeny and Tony (Mila) Strable of West Des Moines. Those who preceded him in death were his parents, his wife, Bernice, his partner in later life, Karen, children; Kevin Kanke and Sherry Preneick and a brother and a sister.


Lloyd F. Richards

Lloyd Richards, the son of Frank and Rose (Finger) Richards, was born August 31, 1937 at Scranton, Iowa and departed this life February 29, 2020 at the Greene County Medical Center in Jefferson, Iowa. He lived his life to the age of 82 years, 3 months and 8 days.

Lloyd attended and graduated from the Scranton High School in 1956. He joined the National Guard and later attended a mechanic trade school in Kansas City. On September 6, 1958, Lloyd was united in marriage to Shirley Tasler of Jefferson at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Jefferson. That fall, Lloyd started farming the Tasler farm near Churdan with his father-in-law, Rudolph Tasler. Lloyd and Shirley farmed the Tasler farm and raised two children, Mike and Denise. They moved from the farm to Churdan in 1994 and Lloyd continued to farm and later sold seed corn for the Pioneer Seed Co. along with his son. Lloyd retired from farming in 2000.

Lloyd was an active member of St. Columbkille Catholic Church and served on the church board. He was also active in the community as a Lion’s Club member, served on the elevator’s board of directors and the St. Patrick Cemetery Board. Both Lloyd and Shirley enjoy playing golf and Lloyd served on the Lakeside Golf Course board of directors. They spent six months during the winter in McAllen, Texas for many, many years, playing golf and being with friends. They later purchased a home in McAllen.

Lloyd is survived by his wife, Shirley, son, Mike and his wife, Heather of Jefferson and their children; Jason, Krista, Cole, Clarissa, Bryanna, Joshua and Tyler, daughter, Denise and her husband, Bryon Holst, of Forest City, Iowa and their children; Kylie and Rachel, great-grandchildren; Tajia, Taya, Emilee, Jaxon, Adysen, Hallee, Chesney, Zeppelin, Cassandra and Emerson and sister, Beth Diffley of Minneapolis, MN. Those who preceded him in death were his parents, two sisters Beulah Peters and his twin sister, Laura Ellis and brother, Herman.

Mass of the Christian Burial was held at 10:30 AM Friday, March 6th, at St. Columbkille Catholic Church in Churdan with Father Tim Schott officiating. Burial was made in St. Patrick’s Catholic Cemetery. Musical selections were sung by cantor, Greg Carey and the church choir and accompanied by organist, Lois Last. Visitation was held from 4 to 7:00 PM Thursday at the church with a Rosary service at 6:45.

Honorary bearers were Lloyd’s grandchildren, Lloyd’s Churdan morning coffee group, all his friends at Paradise Park at McAllen, TX., Clark Taylor and Quentin Minnehan.

Rhea Gem Brown


Rhea Gem Brown, age 99, of Lohrville, Iowa, passed away peacefully into the arms of our Lord on Thursday, January 30, 2020 in Kansas City, MO. She was born in Lake City, Iowa to Marion and Laura Blanchfield on October 28, 1920. Rhea was happily married to Harold Brown in 1938 and was married for 64 years before Harold’s passing. Throughout early marriage, they had opportunity to live in New York City and Tucson before settling down in Lohrville. Rhea was a wonderful homemaker and loved and was loved by all her family and friends deeply. She was a very special person who led with her faith as an example to anyone she came in contact with.   During her life Rhea was involved in many ministries including Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship, prison ministry, nursing home ministry, teaching Sunday School, and Share Group. Rhea was passionate about sharing the gospel and reaching out to people to help them find Jesus. At the nursing home where she last resided, she was known for praying for others and her singing and worshipping.

Rhea is survived by one daughter and husband, Treva and Jim Burk, and two sons and their wives, Ronald and Paulette Brown, and Kendall and Sharman Brown, two granddaughters and their husbands, Alisa and Chuck Baker and Lori and Darren Miller, three grandsons and their wives, Kurt Burk, Kent and Mary Brown, and Blake and Mona Brown, four great granddaughters and their husbands, Hannah and Chris Green, Genova and Bruce Dakan, Elizabeth and Nick Parrish, and Christine Brown, five great grandsons and wives, Joshua Baker, Benjamin Brown, Jonathan Brown, Cory and Erin Brown, Drew Brown, Clinton Miller, and Nick Miller, three great, great granddaughters, Ahava Dakan, Tallulah Dakan, and Alyssa Brown, and three great, great grandsons, Ian Brock, Braxton Brock, and Sir Parrish.

Our family believes that when someone passes, they pass from this life into the next life. We know that she is in heaven praising our Savior, Jesus Christ, a place of everlasting peace alongside Him. While we grieve her passing, with our grief comes the joy of knowing where she now resides!

A graveside ceremony was held at Evergreen Cemetery in Lohrville on Saturday, February 8 at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, we are requesting that donations be made to Desperation Church’s missions fund in Rhea’s name. (Desperation Church, 940 Kent Street, Liberty, MO 64068)