Gerald J. Gansen
September 14, 1927 ~ October 25, 2022
Gerald J. Gansen, age 95, of Riceville, IA formerly of Elma, IA passed away on Tuesday, October 25, 2022 at Riceville Family Care and Therapy Center. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 AM on Saturday, October 29, 2022 at Immaculate Conception Church in Elma with Father Jerry Kopachek celebrating the mass. Burial will be held at Calvary Cemetery in Elma. Visitation will be from 4:00-7:00 PM on Friday, October 28, 2022 at Conway-Markham Funeral Home in Elma with a 3:30 Scriptural Wake Service. Visitation will continue at the church one hour prior to the funeral mass on Saturday. Online condolences may be left at www.conway-markhamfh.com. Memorials may be directed to the family. Gerald John Gansen was born on September 14, 1927, to Clarence and Geneva (Jacoby) Gansen in rural Elma, IA. He went to rural schools and then high school at Immaculate Conception Academy, where he was enamored with a cute girl named Marjorie Ann Shannon. They were married June 16, 1948, at Immaculate Conception Church in Elma, where they remained lifelong members. Gerald and Marge celebrated 74 years of marriage this year. In his early years after high school, Gerald worked at the Oliver Farm Equipment Company's Charles City plant. He spent the next 40 years working his land on a farm west of Elma, where he and Marge raised their eight children. Gerald epitomized self-sufficiency and hard work and had a talent for mechanical repair and design. He built from scratch many of the buildings and equipment used on the farm and passed along his sense of ambition, creativity and ability to make something out of nothing. He was industrious and loved a challenge; he could fix almost anything! After retirement, Gerald and Marge enjoyed traveling to Texas and out west, and they wintered in Florida for 25 years. Gerald loved all things farming, especially tractors. Affectionately known as Grandpa Airplane, Gerald also was an aviation enthusiast and volunteered at the Commemorative Air Force Base in Harlingen, TX. He built and flew an extensive collection of radio-controlled airplanes. Gerald and Marge enjoyed their large and boisterous family, celebrating annual July 4th get-togethers hosted by their son, Tony Gansen of Greene, IA. Gerald is survived by his wife, Marge, of Riceville; eight children, including Rebecca Dvorak and Ann (Andy) Penniston of Kansas City, MO; Tim (Kathy) Gansen, Mike (Joyce) Gansen and Tony Gansen of Greene, IA; Dean (Kari) Gansen, Dale (Rose) Gansen and Amy (Randy) Torney of Riceville, IA; 19 grandchildren and 27 great-grandchildren; two sisters, Norma (Ken) Kolbet and Jeannette (Brian) Glaser; and sister-in-law, Eleanore Gansen. He was preceded in death by his parents, Clarence and Geneva Gansen; an infant brother, John; and siblings Nick (Dolly) Gansen, Mary Finley, Katherine (Daniel) White and Joe Gansen.