Raymond F. Kruse, 89, of Ogden passed away Thursday, Dec. 24, 2020, at the MercyOne Medical Center in Des Moines, Iowa.
A funeral service for Ray will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 31 at the Zion Lutheran Church in Ogden, with the Rev. Lyle Hansen and the Rev. Stephen Ude officiating. Burial will follow at Glenwood Cemetery in Ogden. Graveside military rites will be accorded by the Boone Veterans Council.
A visitation will be held from 4-7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 30 at the Zion Lutheran Church in Ogden. Carson-Stapp Funeral Home in Ogden has been entrusted with arrangements.
Raymond Fred Kruse was born Jan. 3, 1931, in Turtleford, Saskatchewan, Canada, to Fred and Lillian (Lobe) Kruse.
He grew up on a homestead outside of Mervin with his two younger brothers, Gordon Paul and Ronald Alfred.
Ray attended Silver Lake Elementary school until his family moved to a farm south of Ogden in 1944. He graduated from Ogden High School in 1950.
Ray enlisted in the U.S. Navy Jan. 5, 1951. He served aboard the USS Bearss Destroyer DD 654 as a torpedoman’s mate TM2.
Ray met Dorothy Murken while home on leave in 1951, and they were married Oct. 19, 1952.
Ray was honorably discharged Nov. 6, 1954. He was awarded the Medal of Defense for his service during the Korean War.
In the spring of 1955, Ray and Dorothy moved north of Ogden and raised their children: Linda Arlene, Karla Jean and Steven Ray. Their first home was where Steve and Shelley currently live. Ray and Dorothy moved to their current homeplace in 1962.
Ray farmed with his dad for many years. In 1957 Ray and his dad, with the help of Ernie Behn and the Boone County Soil Conservation, built the largest farm pond in Boone County. Ray grew corn and soybeans, had a herd of over 200 head of cows, farrowed and had feeder pigs.
Ray delivered seed corn for Lowe-Berry’s. He did various custom farming jobs, such as spraying, combining and hay baling. He sold Crow’s Seed Corn and sold Archer Oil for over 30 years.
He was named Outstanding Soil Conservation District Commissioner in 1963 and was named Outstanding Boone County Conservationist in 1965. He won several awards for Crow’s Seed Corn Salesmanship.
Ray worked at Ag Serv and Seven Oaks for several years along with serving as a guard at the high bridge after 9/11.
Ray and Steve started raising Norwegian elkhounds in the 1980s, and they have continued for over 35 years.
Ray removed snow for many families, businesses and churches in Ogden.
He and Dorothy began selling funnel cakes in 1984 and continued up until his death.
Ray was also involved in community and church projects. He was a charter member of the Boone County Historical Society.
Ray and Dorothy were foster parents and also invited Eva Buettner, a foreign exchange student, into their home.
Ray served for many years on Zion Lutheran Church’s Board of Stewards. He and Dorothy served as youth counselors for LYC for 30 years.
Ray served on the Boone County Farm Bureau Board for 20 years. He and Dorothy were honored when asked to be Boone County Fair Parade Marshalls in 2016.
Ray loved talking with all of the fishermen and families that came out to the pond.
He spent many hours in his shop, tinkering, fixing and changing things. When a float needed to be built, Ray was on it. He built many Ogden Fun Days floats, homecoming floats, Republican floats and church floats.
Ray loved giving hayrides and hosting sledding parties. He loved his hay crews.
Ray enjoyed collecting antiques, watching the birds on his many bird feeders and spending time with his family and friends.
Survivors include his wife, Dorothy, of 68 years; children, Linda (Mike) Thomas of Abrams, Wisconsin, Karla (Rodger) Kahler of Ogden and Steve (Shelley) Kruse of Ogden; grandchildren, Tara (Jason) O’Leary, Ashley (Nick) Gasau, Chelsea (Doug) Dahms, Afton (Jens) Greff, Garrett Kahler and Reagan and Ryker Kruse; great-grandchildren, Klaire, Sophia and Gretchen O’Leary, Eli, Adeline and Silas Gasau and Jonah, Brynlee and Truman Dahms; two brothers, Gordon (Kathy) Kruse and Ronald (Lu) Kruse; brothers-in-law, Richard Murken and Wade Sheesley; along with many nieces and nephews and their families.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Lillian and Fred Kruse; mother-in-law and father-in-law, John and Alice Murken; brother-in-law, Norman Murken; and sister-in-law, Helen Jean Sheesley.
In lieu of flowers, memorials in honor of Ray may be sent to: Dorothy Kruse, 799 190th St., Ogden, IA 50212,