Walter Ivan Matzen, 93, died Thursday, February 11, 2010 at his residence in Hot Springs, Arkansas.
Walter was born December 4, 1917, the son of Andrew and Minnie Matzen at Mason City, Iowa. Walter received his education in Mason City, then enlisted in the U.S. Army and served during WWII. After discharge from the army he worked as a meat cutter at Decker/Armour Meat packing facility in Mason City.
He met his future wife, who worked in the cafeteria department, at Deckers. He married Helen Madge Matzen in 1947 at the First Christian Church in Mason City. Walter worked as a shoe cobbler as a side job and had a shop in his home in Central Heights of Mason City.
They moved to Clear Lake in 1962 at which time he donated his shoe repair equipment to ‘Handicap Village’ of Clear Lake. The Clear Lake Church of Christ was a central part of his family’s life. They attended the church when it was a small building on the corner of 12th and Main and helped build a new church building on this property that is now the AA office building.
After retirement in 1976, they moved to the rural community of Blockton, Iowa. The Blockton Christian Church and the town was an important part of his life. Walter shared his gardening, black walnut harvests and carpentry expertise with family and friends of the community and the church. He opened his home to those who needed a place to stay. He enjoyed camping, road trips and yearly visits to a religious retreat at the Kiamichi Mountain Clinic. Walter was always there with a smile and helping hand whenever anyone needed help.
Walter was a member of the Hot Springs New Life Christian Church, American Legion and a lifetime member of the Moose Lodge.
Walter is survived by four daughters, Sandra Dee Larsen and husband Stephen, of Bella Vista, Arkansas, Christee Kay Samuelson and husband Dwayne, of Fairfield, Iowa, Alta Jane Lekwa and husband Larry, of Hot Springs, Arkansas and Vickie Lou Hahn and husband Alfred, of Nevada, Iowa and a son, Mark Lee Matzen of Trenton, New Jersey. Along with his immediate family and friends, he will be missed by his many grandchildren and their families, John and Kristin Larsen, Carey Hungerford, Theresa Hungerford, Andrew and Julia Lekwa, Kelly Jo and John McNeill, Stephanie and Alan Lonning, Greg Hahn and Laura Spillane, Monika and Christopher Hinson, Angela Samuelson and Cassie Markley and Kelsee and Kylie Meyers (the daughters of the late Lisa Meyers).
He was preceded in death by his parents, wife, two sisters, Ella Edgington and Matilda Marvel, four brothers, Paul, Edwin, Lawrence, and Alvin, and granddaughter Lisa Meyer, and great-grandson, Jeremy Hungerford.
Funeral services were held Tuesday, February 16, at the Church of Christ in Clear Lake, Iowa with Rev. Scott Marcum officiating. Interment was in the Memorial Park Cemetery at Mason City, Iowa with military honors provided by the Clear Lake V.F.W. Memorials will be sent to the New Life Christian Church, Hot Springs, Arkansas.
Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel of Clear Lake was in charge of the arrangements.