Gerold A. Nissen, 81, of Moville, passed away unexpectedly Thursday, January 12, 2017 at his residence.
Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, January 17, 2017 at the United Methodist Church in Moville, Iowa, with Rev. Janet Rieckhoff-Faris officiating. Burial was at Cushing Cemetery with military honors by American Legion Baumann Post 624 of Cushing.
Rohde Funeral Home in Kingsley, Iowa is handling arrangements. Online condolences may be directed to the family through www.rohdefh.com.
Gerold was born on May 6, 1935 at Cushing to Fred and Ella (Carlsen) Nissen.
He attended school at Grand Meadow until the third grade. Then the family moved to Cushing, where he attended school through the ninth grade. After that, he had to stay home to help with the farming.
He later worked as a hired hand for Gunnard Carlsen at Pierson, Iowa until he entered the armed service. That gave him the opportunity to earn his general education diploma (GED).
He took his basic training in the Army at Fort Bliss, Texas. He was stationed at Castro Valley, CA for the remainder of his service time with A-Battery of the 740th. It was a Nike Missile Base. Its purpose was to defend the West Coast from enemy air strikes.
Gerold stayed in touch with six of the members of the 740th over the years and at their reunions. They always mentioned how good of a job they did in defending the West Coast from air strikes, as they didn’t have any on their watch.
He received his discharge on December 14, 1956. He returned home to farm, in partnership with his father. He married Margaret Wood on December 14, 1958 at the Church of Christ in Anthon, Iowa. To this union, three children were born: Julie, David and Gary.
He loved and enjoyed the company of his children and grandchildren. It didn’t matter if they were working or playing; he was happy to be with them. There was lots of work to do on the farm. From time to time, he would remind his kids that his job was to teach his kids how to work, because they would learn to dance by themselves.
Gerold and Margaret purchased the farm from his parents when they retired and moved to town in 1967. He had the honor of being selected a Master Swine Producer for the state of Iowa in 1966. He had been raising hogs since age of twelve. He cherished that honor.
Gerold served one year on the Junior Board for the Pierson Farmers Elevator and six years as a director. He served four years on the Eastwood School Board, as well as one year as President of their Quarterback Club.
He was a member of the American Legion Baumann post 624 at Cushing and served as president for two years. He served on the Woodbury County Extension Council for six years. He served as president on the Church Board for both the Church of Christ in Anthon and Correctionville, as well as being a Sunday School Teacher.
He joined the Moville United Methodist Church when they moved to Moville and served on the Endowment Committee. He was a member of the Masons Trial Lodge 532 at Moville.
He enjoyed music, which included singing for weddings and funerals. His most requested song was “The Cattle Call.”
Gerold enjoyed flying his private airplane. He was a member of the Flying Farmers. He flew for over 30 years. He logged many hours doing what he loved to do in his spare time. He had a hanger and airstrip on the farm. So when the urge to fly hit, he often dropped what he was doing and took off to the upper heights. He said this freed his mind of stress and strain.
He loved travelling to various places around the world. The most memorable were the three trips to Germany to meet and visit with his aunt and cousins on his dad’s side of the family, as well as the two trips to Ireland to meet and get acquainted with his wife’s relatives there.
Gerold is survived by his wife, Margaret; his children: Julie, David, and Gary; and his grandchildren: Katie Nissen, Andrew Nissen, Brittany Nissen, Maggie Nissen, Erik Nissen, Connor Nissen, Will Grundy and Megan Grundy; and his brothers, Harold, Donald and their families.
He was proceeded in death by his parents; his father and mother-in-law, Harry and Marcella Wood; and two brothers, Freddy (in infancy) and Larry.
Gerold would like to thank his family and friends for all the joy and happiness that they brought him during his life.