DONALD  FREDERICK  VAN LAAR

DONALD  FREDERICK  VAN LAAR

    Donald Frederick Van Laar, age 84 of Grand River, Iowa, the son of Frederick John and Helen Vye (Baker) Van Laar, was born May 8, 1930 in Grand River Township of Decatur County, Iowa. He died on Wednesday, August 27, 2014 at Mercy Hospital Medical Center in Des Moines, Iowa.
    Donald attended Diamond Country School through the eighth grade. He graduated from Grand River High School in 1948. On January 28, 1950, he and Merna Jean Stogdill eloped and were married in Bethany, Missouri. They were blessed with three children, Randy, Vicki and Danny.
    Don was a farmer all of his life. He also was known for many things, such as, playing basketball, pitching fast pitch softball, picking corn by hand, making Iowa clocks, raising pumpkins, watermelons and a huge garden. He won ribbons at the county and state fairs with his fruits and vegetables. Also for bowling, elk and deer hunting and picking mushrooms and wild berries. He loved going on fishing trips and hosting Halloween parties. Merna taught him to crochet during the winter months. Don was very active until the end. Seldom a day went by without Don and Merna going somewhere.
    Preceding him in death were his parents; siblings and their spouses, Lucile & Martin Kraus, Lurene and Carl Brammer, Dorothy Jenkins and John and Verda Van Laar and his in-laws, Claude and Arlene Stogdill.
    Survivors include his loving wife and companion of 64 years, Merna Van Laar of Grand River; children, Randy and Julia Van Laar of Grand River, Vicki and Lyle Greimann of Fort Dodge, Iowa, and Danny and Dawnette Van Laar of Winterset, Iowa; grandchildren, Brandon and Diane Van Laar of Decatur, Iowa, Jammi and Matt Daise of Oregon, Missouri, Travis Van Laar and fiance Alysha Quick of Leon, Cory Greimann and friend Tina Kafer of Jamaica, Iowa, Kelli Greimann of Gowrie, Iowa, Mathew and Alyssa Van Laar of Ames, Iowa, Ryan Van Laar, Tyson Van Laar, and Drew Van Laar and friend, Stacey Baudler, all of Winterset; three great-grandchildren, Jolie Parle of Gowrie and Brayden and Madison Greimann of Jamaica; brother, Raymond Van Laar and wife Ann of Grand River; brother-in-law, Bernard Stogdill and wife Mary of Grand River; nieces and nephews; and other relatives and friends.
    Funeral services were held at the Slade – O’Donnell Funeral Home in Leon, Iowa at 2 p.m. Saturday, August 30, 2014 with Reverend Terry D. Roberts officiating.   Burial was in the Oak Hill Cemetery near Grand River, Iowa.            
    A memorial fund has been established by the Family.

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