George Ervin Kloehn, 80, of Henrietta Township, passed away at William A. Middleton Veterans Hospital on Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014.
He was born on July 27, 1934 to Ervin and Carrie (Norman) Kloehn in the Township of Henrietta. He was an only child, and had a best friend in Leo Subera. George attend Henrietta School and graduated from Richland Center High School in 1952. He was a 4-H member of Henrietta Trail Blazers. He received the Leadership Trophy and a Tractor Safety Award and called for square-dances for 4-H dances. He was a 4-H leader for many years. He married Karen Wanless on Oct. 27, 1956. From January 1957-November 1958, he served in Germany as a cook and dishwasher and was discharged with an ulcer. He worked at Gold Bond ice cream plant for three years and farmed, then in 1960 he started driving bus for Roger Martin and then for Lester Graves, and then in 1964 he bought his first bus and then was contracted through Richland Center School District. He worked for Burke Motors for several years. In 1973 he bought the Frye-Hendricks Garage and worked on his buses and cars for other people. In 1985 he sold the buses and bought a trailer and truck to haul cattle. He drove bus after that for the Hilltoppers Color Guard untilo they disbanded. He hauled cattle until a few weeks before his death. He received the Friends of 4-H and received an award from the Richland Center High School FFA for his help for hauling cattle to the fair and mentoring them in farming. He was a member of the Odd Fellow Lodge for over 25 years; he was a Noble Grand when they disbanded. He belonged to the Disabled Vets in Richland Center and he delivered the Shopping News for 10 years. He served on the Henrietta Town Board as Town Chairman, Supervisor and Assessor, served on the St. John’s Church Board, was past president for Richland County Farm Bureau and Director, sat on the Richland County Beef Producers Board, and was a past member of the School Bus Association. He enjoyed hunting pheasant and grouse with his sons and friends and fishing with the family. George was an avid woodworker.
George is survived by his wife of 58 years, Karen; six children: Jeanette Burkum from Merrill, WI; Elizabeth Kloehn rural Hillsboro; Mary Yanske (Tom) of Salem, MO; Bill Kloehn (Missy), Floyd Kloehn (friend Rose), Louise Kloehn of Richland Center; 10 grandchildren: Jason and Jesse Burkum, TJ, Trevor Yanske, Sara Bays, Mike Kloehn, Joe Kloehn, Becky Kloehn, Tiffany Daughenbaugh and Carley Kloehn; two stepgrandchildren: Terry Sage and Chelssi Deckert; six great-grandchildren; three step-great-grandchildren; brother and sister-in-laws: Orla Wanless of Arizona, Connie (Wayne) Moldenhauer of Madison, Roger Wanless of Alabama, Mary Susan (Steve) Nachtigal of Soldiers Grove; special cousin Viola (Jim) Behm of Fort Atkinson, special friends, Doug and Di Marshall of Hillsboro; and their daughters Emily and Sara; other relatives, and friends.
George was preceded in death by his parents, Carrie and Ervin; son-in-law, Arvid Burkum; and two great-grandchildren, and Aunt Lois (John ‘Pier’) Morgan.
Funeral services were held on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014 at 11 a.m. at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Richland Center, with Pastor Tom Dowling officiating. Burial followed in the Richland Center Cemetery where military graveside rites will be provided by the Local Military Memorial Honors Unit. Friends called at St. John’s Lutheran Church on Friday, Nov. 7, 2014 from 4-8 p.m. and again on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014 from 10 a.m. until the time of the service at 11 a.m. The family suggests memorials in George’s name be directed to the D.A.V., St. John’s Lutheran Church or to the family. The Pratt Funeral and Cremation Service is assisting the family with their arrangements. Online condolences can be made at prattfuneralservice.com.