Funeral services for Gordon Sickels, age 89, of Bedford, Iowa, who died Thursday, May 26, 2011, at the Bedford Nursing & Rehab Center will be held Tuesday, May 31, 2011, at 10:30 a.m. at the New Life Missionary Church in Bedford. Interment was held in the Fairview Cemetery in Bedford. Memorials may be given in Gordon’s name. Memories can be shared with the family at www.ritchiefuneralhome.com. Arrangements were entrusted to the Ritchie Funeral Home of Bedford.
Gordon Sickels was born July 20, 1921 in Athelstan, Iowa the son of Glenn Sickels and Zelda (Freemeyer) Sickels. Gordon was raised on a farm north of Athelstan attending Works Country School through the eighth grade. He then attended Athelstan high school, graduating on May 9, 1940. He was always very proud of the fact he was ‘second high’ in this class. . . . of course, there were only two students in his class . . . . he and Betty (Balch) Houchin. After graduation, he continued farming with his dad and brother when World War II began. With only one of the brothers being able to enlist (because one had to stay home on the farm) Gordon, being the youngest, remained home. Gordon loved all outdoor activities: baseball, horseback riding, sledding, ice skating, fishing, along with bow and gun hunting. Most of these activities were with his neighbors up the road, Paul, Albert and Ida May King.
On July 17, 1943, he married that neighbor girl, Ida May King. The couple lived west of Athelstan where he continued farming. To this loving marriage three daughters were born: Judith, Linda and Sharon. While farming, Gordon also drove a school bus for the Bedford Community school district when the county reorganized to include Bedford, Blockton, Athelstan, Conway and Gravity.
In 1962 the family moved from the farm into the Bedford community. He worked at the Skylark Service Station, for Bob Bonar at Bedford Gas installing and servicing furnaces and Skelly Service Station for Virgil Livingston. He was in partnership with Virgil at the Skelly Service Station and later took over sole ownership. In 1976 he sold the station and went back to farming for his son-in-law and daughter, Jerry and Judy King of Blockton. He did part-time carpentry work in his home workshop. He and Ida May enjoyed traveling in their RVs. Together they saw many sights in many states throughout the country. They enjoyed taking many photos along the way. Gordon and Ida May spent some of their later years during the winter months in Arizona.
Over the years Gordon enjoyed starting each day with his ‘coffee buddies’ at various cafes in Bedford. He enjoyed bowling, receiving many trophies along the way. Gordon especially enjoyed golfing every chance he could with his friends and ‘seniors.’ In fact, one year he and his friends golfed all 12 months. During the winter they even drilled holes in frozen ground for their tees.
Left to cherish the memory of this loving father and friend are his three daughters, Judith Ann King and husband Jerry of Blockton, Iowa, Linda Eileen McClannahan and husband Paul of Des Moines, Iowa and Sharon Lea Davison and husband Roger of Bedford, Iowa; six grandchildren, Jason King and wife Sara of Blockton, Iowa, Kristie Searl and husband Allan of Clarinda, Iowa, David McClannahan and wife Brenda of Indianola, Iowa, Heather Schager and husband Matt of Des Moines, Iowa, Todd Davison and wife Sandra of Hopkins, Missouri and Tim Davison and wife Teresa of Fontanelle, Iowa, and 12 great-grandchildren, Courtney, Joel, Quentin, Brody, Colton, Colby, Desirae, Gabriel, Amanda, Jared, Alisha and Tanner.
Preceding Gordon in death were his parents, Glenn and Zelda Sickels; his loving wife, Ida May, in December of 2007, and a brother, Glade Sickels.
Gordon was a ‘family man.’ Nothing pleased him more than bragging about his daughters and grandchildren. He will be missed by all of his family and friends.