August 9, 2022 - 8:47 pm - Posted in Obituaries

Charlene DeGooyer, age 77, of Rock Rapids, Iowa died Tuesday, August 9, 2022, at Lyon Specialty Care in Rock Rapids, IA.

The funeral service will be 10:30 AM, Saturday, August 13th at the United Methodist Church of Rock Rapids, IA, with Pastor Travis Remme officiating. Burial will follow at Riverview Cemetery in Rock Rapids. Visitation will be Friday, August 12th from 5:00 to 7:00 PM, with the family present at Jurrens Funeral Home of Rock Rapids.

In Lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the United Methodist Church of Rock Rapids and/or Third Avenue Youth Program, 302 S Carroll St., Rock Rapids, IA 51246


Charlene Ruth Swalve was born on April 6, 1945, to Eugene and Cecille (Hill) Swalve in George, Iowa. She lived in George until she graduated in 1963. As a young girl, she loved roller-skating and was the Roller-skating Queen of Benson’s Roller-skating Rink in Rock Rapids in 1963. It was at Benson’s Roller Rink in Hull, Iowa that she met the love of her life, Jim DeGooyer. They started dating, fell in love and were married on April 16, 1965. They lived in Sioux Center, Little Rock, and George before settling down in Rock Rapids in 1973.

Her time as a waitress in the George café shaped Char’s desire for caring and giving. She loved to send cards to friends and family for birthdays, anniversaries, and other occasions. She was involved in various activities at the United Methodist Church, such as Stephen Ministries, Hospice, quilters, and various other church activities. She was also a Cub Scout Den Leader and a Confirmation Mentor. Her generosity also showed through in her work as receptionist for DeGooyer Hearing Aid Service for 37 years, as she received many compliments for her sincerity and kindness. Char was generous and always willing to help anyone in need with no expectations, and she was also known to be excellent tipper.

Char had a great sense of humor and enjoyed making people laugh. She loved to dress up as Mae West for local birthday parties and anniversaries. And she would dress up in other costumes upon request for various occasions. She enjoyed bowling as well as eating out, going to movies, or just socializing with friends such as the “Ha-Ha’s”, and the “Misfits”.

Char passed away on August 9, 2022, at Lyon Specialty Care in Rock Rapids after extended illnesses. She was survived by her husband of 57 years, Jim DeGooyer; two children: Todd (wife Angie and grandson Danny) of St Charles, MO, and Jodi of St. Peters, MO; sisters-in-law: Maureen DeGooyer of Schoolcraft, MI, Mae DeGooyer of Sioux Center, IA, Nelva DeGooyer of Maurice, IA, and Sandra Swalve of Sioux Falls; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Eugene & Cecille Swalve; brothers Terry Swalve and Gary Swalve; her beloved aunt Ruth Hill; inlaws Don & Geraldine DeGooyer; brothers-in-law Millard DeGooyer and Donald DeGooyer, Jr.; nephew Veryl DeGooyer; and grandson Nicholas Noah DeGooyer.

The family of Char DeGooyer would like to give a special thanks: to the staff of Lyon Specialty Care, to Sanford Hospice of Sheldon, to Brenda Vis and the staff of Sanford Medical Clinic of Rock Rapids, to the local Avera hospital, and to the Lyon County Ambulance Service.

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