Tuesday, June 17, 2014 9:08 AM
LeRoy Franzen, 78, of Festina, died June 14, 2014. Mass of Christian Burial was at 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, June 18, at St. Luke’s Catholic Church in St. Lucas, with Rev. Nick March officiating. Organist was Jeanette Dietzenbach. St. Luke’s Choir sang “Amazing Grace,” “Softly and Tenderly,” “Precious Lord, Take my Hand,” “On Eagle’s Wing” and “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.” Lectors were Richard Nesbitt and Scott Steffen. Mass servers were Mark Steffen, Marlene Franzen and Eric Franzen. Offertory gift bearers were Emma Barton-O’Donnell, Isaac Franzen and Ivey Franzen. Eucharistic ministers were Timothy Franzen, Richard Nesbitt, Scott Steffen and Germaine Langreck. Casket bearers were Caleb Nesbitt, Nathan Grove, Megan Nesbitt, Thomas Steffen, Devin Franzen and Bradley Steffen. Interment was at St. Luke’s Catholic Cemetery in St. Lucas. Arrangements were handled by Schluter – Balik Funeral Home, Decorah.
LeRoy Edward Franzen was born April 11, 1936, the son of Joseph and Elizabeth (Bruening) Franzen on the family farm near St. Lucas. LeRoy graduated from St. Luke’s Catholic High School in 1954. While in high school he enjoyed playing basketball and baseball. He farmed with his father until he purchased the family farm. LeRoy was united in marriage to JoAnn Lutkenhaus June 29, 1960, at Our Lady of Seven Dolors Catholic Church in Festina. To this union 14 children were born: Deborah, Kathy, Marilyn, Timothy, Patrick, Keith, Jean, Daniel, Dean, Michael, Scott, Beth, Julie, and Gregory. Along with farming, LeRoy also worked at Bushman Farms, Brumwell Organic Foods and Beatrice Cheese. He retired and moved to Festina in 2008. LeRoy enjoyed fishing, hunting, dancing, mushroom hunting, playing cards and socializing with family and friends. He was very proud that the family farm became a Century Farm in 2013. LeRoy was a life-long member of St. Luke’s Catholic Church.
LeRoy is survived by his wife, JoAnn Franzen, Festina; 14 children: Deborah (James) Shults, Grand Junction, Colo.; Kathy (Scott) Steffen, Carroll; Marilyn (Richard) Nesbitt, Coal Valley, Ill.; Timothy (Connie) Franzen, Festina; Patrick (Kendra) Franzen, Luana; Keith (Robin) Franzen, Riceville; Jean (Michael) Everhart, Cedar Rapids; Daniel (Sarah) Franzen, Fort Atkinson; Dean (Nancy) Franzen, Fort Atkinson; Michael Franzen, Festina; Scott (Denise) Franzen, St. Lucas; Beth (Graeme) Sandlin, Port Townsend, Wash.; Julie (Joshua) Nolte, Waucoma; and Gregory Franzen, Festina. LeRoy also is survived by numerous grandchildren.
LeRoy’s surviving siblings and in-laws are: Carl Franzen, Ossian; Irvin Franzen, Hawkeye; Helen (Ronald) Palmersheim, Greeley; Marion Franzen, Decorah; Eleanora Franzen, Ossianand Janet Franzen, Ossian; Shirley (Edward) Morris, Cedar Rapids; Donna Mae (William) Davis, Cedar Rapids; John (LuAnn) Lutkenhaus, Cedar Rapids; Karen (Bernard) Busta, Waucoma; LaVonne “Bonnie” (Dean) Patrick, West Union; and Mary Jo Wharton, Denver, Colo.; along with many nieces, nephews and great-nieces and -nephews.
LeRoy was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph and Elizabeth Franzen; one grandson, in infancy, Matthew Nesbitt; siblings: Catherine (Roy) Tierney, Marie (Lawrence) Bruening, Leonard (Mary) Franzen, Raymond Franzen, Guido “Pete” Franzen, Theresa (Ray) Baumler, Theckla Franzen in infancy, Louis (Arlene) Franzen and Lawrence (Pat) Franzen; sister-in-law, Madeline Franzen; LeRoy’s father- and mother-in-law, Gregory and Marie (Ehler) Lutkenhaus.