Laurene W. Knaack, 96, Gladbrook died in her home on Monday June 7, 2010. Visitation was held on June 11 from 6-8 p.m. at the United Methodist Church in Reinbeck. Service was held on June 12 at 2 p.m. Burial was at the Reinbeck Cemetery. Memorials are to the Reinbeck Methodist Church. Laurene W. Knaack was born on June 3, 1914 in rural Dinsdale, Iowa, the daughter of Cloyd and Bettie (Fleming) Frey. She grew up in the Dinsdale area and attended Dinsdale High School. On September 17, 1938 she was united in marriage to William R. Knaack in Dinsdale. There were four children born to this union. Laurene worked at home, raising their four children. She was very active at the Reinbeck United Methodist Church where she was a Sunday school teacher and a member of the United Methodist Women. Laurene enjoyed baking cookies for her family, crocheting, working on church history and spending time with her family.

Laurene was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, William; a daughter, Carol Smith; two sisters, Blanch Frey and Gertrude Dietrich; a brother, Kenneth Frey; a granddaughter, Marcia Knaack; a daughter-in-law, Mina Knaack; and a brother-in-law Virgil Knaack. She is survived by three children, Melvin Knaack, Robert (Marcella) Knaack, and Joyce (Harold) Swangel all of Gladbrook; a sister, Lucille (Robert) Thede of Reinbeck; two sisters-in-law, Marjorie Frey of Gladbrook and Lois Knaack of Reinbeck; a brother-in-law, Ralph (Mildred) Knaack of Reinbeck; 9 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren.


Randall Ohrt, 60, of Reinbeck, Iowa, died Tuesday, June 8, 2010, at his home in Reinbeck, Iowa, of metastases of squamous cell carcinoma, while under the care of Cedar Valley Hospice. Funeral services were held at 10:30 AM, Saturday, June 12, 2010, at Union Congregational United Church of Christ Church in Reinbeck, Iowa, with Pastor Joel Love officiating. Burial will be held privately at the Reinbeck Cemetery in Reinbeck. Visitation was Friday, June 11, 2010, from 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM at French Hand Funeral Home in Reinbeck, where there will also be a Masonic Service at 7:30 PM performed by the Coin Lodge #394. Randy requested memorials be made to St. Luke’s Hospital NICU, Cedar Rapids, Iowa or Muscular Dystrophy Association for Myotonic Dystrophy research. To view the complete obituary or to send messages of condolence, please visit www.abelsfuneralhomes.com.

Randy was born on June 8, 1950 in Waterloo, Iowa son of Richard Lloyd and Margaret Lucile (Johnson) Ohrt. Randy lived in Reinbeck nearly all of his life and graduated from Reinbeck High School in 1968. He attended Iowa State University and graduated in 1972 with a degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Biology and a minor in botany. He did his field study in Cordova, Alaska.

On September 7, 1974, he married Cynthia Sue VanGelder at the Reinbeck United Church of Christ. Randy and Cindi lived their entire life on the same farmstead. Randy built a beautiful home for his family and he took great pride in the appearance. He farmed with his father and brothers in the Reinbeck area and was a Pioneer seed corn grower for 37 years. Randy was an excellent craftsman and repairman and loved the challenge of fixing and building.

In 1986, Randy was named Iowa Jaycee’s Outstanding Young Farmer. He was interviewed by Lee Kline of WHO-AM, who asked how young farmers were able to keep optimism about their future in agriculture during the difficult times of the 1980’s. Randy sited his faith in God and in his country that better times would be ahead.

Randy served on the Reinbeck Community School Board from 1989-1998 and the Gladbrook-Reinbeck School Board from 1998-2000. He served six terms as president. Randy was a Master Mason and member of Coin Lodge 394 in Reinbeck. He served three terms as Worshipful Master and was proficient in much of the degree works. Randy also was a past president of the Reinbeck Theatre Guild and was on the stage and behind the scenes of many productions. His favorite role was Wild Bill Hickok in “Deadwood Dick.”

He was a life-long member of the Reinbeck United Church of Christ. He served on several boards and sang in the choir until his illness prevented him from doing so. He then joined the bell choir and was a member until his death. After worship service he often stated he missed singing more than anything else.

Randy’s most important role was that of husband to Cindi and father to his three daughters, Charlotte (Eric) Butikofer of Cedar Rapids, Suzanne (Dale) Felton of Cedar Rapids, and Angela Ohrt of Iowa City and grandfather to Aaron and Andrew Butikofer and McKenna Felton. He is also survived by his parents of Reinbeck, his brothers Philip (Janice) and Bradley all of Reinbeck; his father-in-law Tom VanGelder of Greybull, Wyoming, brother-in-laws Thomas (Karlyn) VanGelder of East Dubuque, Illinois, Douglas (Ruth) VanGelder of Cedar Falls, and David (Jeanne) VanGelder of Greybull, Wyoming. He is also survived by four nieces and nine nephews. He was preceded in death by his mother-in-law, Arlene VanGelder and a grandson, Ian Joseph Felton.


June Leona Rhoades 88, of Reinbeck, Iowa, died Friday, June 11, 2010, at Covenant Medical Center in Waterloo while under the care of Cedar Valley Hospice. Memorial services were held at 10:30 AM, Wednesday, June 16, 2010, at Union Congregational United Church of Christ in Reinbeck, with Pastor Joel Love officiating. Burial will be held privately at the Reinbeck Cemetery in Reinbeck. Memorial visitation was Tuesday, June 15, 2010, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at French Hand Funeral Home in Reinbeck. A memorial has been established. To view the complete obituary or to send messages of condolence, please visit www.abelsfuneralhomes.com.

June was born on June 18, 1921 in Geneseo Township, Tama County, Iowa, to her proud parents Lloyd and Laura Lapham. She attended country school up until the 7th grade. Her family remembers that she use to drive herself to school at the age of 12 years old. June graduated from Hudson High School with the Class of 1939.

June met her husband at a basketball game in Reinbeck. After a brief courtship, Don and June were united in marriage on October 7, 1939 at a Presbyterian Church in Waterloo, Iowa. They made their home in Reinbeck and welcomed five children to their family. June owned and operated her own business, the Rhoadeside Caf in Reinbeck from the years 1954 to 1958. She then worked at Plastronics for 18 years, retiring in the early 1970’s.

June loved to dance. Don and June would go dancing as much as they could during their marriage. They both passed on to their children and grandchildren their love of dance. June was known throughout her community for her delicious potato salad. She loved to cater local events. June was also known for providing the food for her friends and family while tailgating Iowa football games. While Don was serving his country overseas during World War II, June was holding down the home front while maintaining their home and caring for their two small children.

June was member of the American Legion Auxiliary, a member of the Oak Leaf Country Club and a devoted member of the Union Congregational United Church of Christ. June’s family remembers her as a strong, loving and wonderful mother. She will be missed and long remembered by her friends and family.

June is survived by her husband Don; her children Allan (Linda) Rhoades of Reinbeck, Donna (Allen) Korte of Reinbeck, Steve (Elaine) Rhoades of Oak Grove, Mo., Linda (Max) McCoy of Kalona, and Rick (Michelle) Rhoades of Cedar Rapids; 15 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her parents and step-father Edward J. Snider.