Ray Klinkenborg, age 97 of Rock Rapids, IA died Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Lyon Manor Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Rock Rapids, IA.
Funeral service will be 11:00 a.m. Thursday August 21st at the Congregational United Church of Christ in Rock Rapids, IA with Rev. Dean Shelly officiating. Burial will take place prior to the service on Thursday morning. Family and friends will gather at the funeral home in Rock Rapids at 9:00 a.m. before processing to Riverview Cemetery in Rock Rapids. Visitation will be Wednesday August 20th from 2 to 8 p.m. with family present from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Jurrens Funeral Home of Rock Rapids, IA.
In lieu of flowers family wishes memorials be made to Lyon County Hospice.
For a complete obituary and registration please visit www.jurrensfuneralhome.com
Ray was born January 26, 1917 to Enno and Grace (Kruse) Klinkenborg near George, Iowa, where he lived until he graduated from George High School in 1935. Ray attended Iowa Teacher’s College in Cedar Falls until 1939 and then joined the Army in 1940, prior to the United States entering WWII. Ray served as an officer in European campaigns, where he was awarded the Silver Star, our nation’s third highest military decoration for valor. He served, first in Italy, and then France, where he was captured by German forces. He was interned in OFLAG 64, a prisoner of war camp in Poland. When the Russians began their push through Poland, the German soldiers began a forced march of the OFLAG 64 prisoners, during which Ray escaped and made it back to Allied forces. Upon his return from overseas he married Eleanor Jammer on December 24, 1946. Eleanor passed away in 1975. After the war, Ray worked for a short time as the Lyon County Veterans Affairs officer and then in the ASCS office where he worked as director until he retired in 1979. On November 24, 1981 Ray was united in marriage to Nancy Broesder, becoming a step-father to Joshua Pilcher and later Ray and Nancy had a daughter, Abby. Ray enjoyed fishing, golfing, travel and gardening.
He is survived by his wife, Nancy; his daughter, Abby Kempema, her husband Cory Kempema, and their children, Logan and Raelyn of Sioux City, IA; son, Joshua Pilcher, his wife Amy Pilcher and their children, Aria and Carter of Ames, IA; nieces, nephews and other extended family members.
Ray was preceded in death by his parents, Enno and Grace; first wife, Eleanor; brother, Elmer Klinkenborg; and sisters, Selma Hilbrands and Anita Hamlin.