Merle J. McGrane

merle mcgrane
Merle J. McGrane, age 70, of Elma, IA passed away Thursday, January 5, 2012 at St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester, MN surrounded by his family. Merle Joseph McGrane was born on August 14, 1941 to Edward and Evelyn (Quirk) McGrane in Elma, IA. Merle graduated from Immaculate Conception Academy in 1959. After graduating he worked for the Howard County Highway Department on highway maintenance, and the Howard County Secondary Road Crew. Merle was united in marriage to Gladys Meyer on October 26, 1968 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in New Hampton. The couple made their home in New Hampton and later moved to their present home in Elma. Merle worked for Hansen Furniture in New Hampton for six years and helped Ed Conway at the funeral home. He was employed at Kitchens of Sara Lee for 17 years until his retirement in 1989. Merle enjoyed fishing, turtle fishing, dancing, sports, classic cars, yard work, fish frys, eating out, his family, and visiting with friends. Merle had a great sense of humor and was the life of the party. He was a member of Immaculate Conception Church in Elma. Merle is survived by his loving wife, Gladys of Elma; his children, Jason McGrane of Plymouth, MN and Brenda McGrane of Urbandale, IA; his brothers, Jim and LaVern “Mac” McGrane, both of Elma. He was preceded in death by his parents and sister-in-law, Donna McGrane. Cemetery: Burial will be at Calvary Cemetery in Elma following the funeral mass. Memorials may be directed to Merle's family. at Conway-Markham Funeral Home in Elma with a 4:30pm rosary and a 6:00pm scriptural wake service and will continue at the funeral home one hour prior to the funeral mass on Tuesday. at Immaculate Conception Church in Elma, IA with Fr. Ray Atwood celebrating the mass.

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Memories Timeline


  1. By chance or design we only met a couple of years ago sharing a passion for cars. It was meant to be and the times we got together after that were enjoyable and a blessing. I wish the years could have been many more but you will always be with us in spirit. God Bless and Rest in Peace.

  2. Gladys & Family,
    Our thoughts and prayers go out to you at this difficult time. You have our deepest sympathy.
    Nikki & Al Rosonke & Family

  3. Gladys and family, you have our deepest sympathy with your loss. I recall all the fun times we had as were were growing up and Merle and his brothers came out to the farm.

  4. Jason, Gladys, and Brenda and family
    I have been thinking of you today since I heard. Sending thoughts to you as I have no words to heal the pain you have now, but know many people are praying for you.
    Amy & Tom

  5. Our deepest sympathies to your family on the loss of your father, husband, and brother. We know he lived a large life and leaves a legacy that is large as well.

    Marcia & Mark McAdoo

  6. Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire McGrane family. Brenda, your dad was a wonderful man and will be greatly missed.

  7. Our thoughts are with all of you at this traumatic time. We will remember your family in our prayers, and may God give you the strength to accept His will.

  8. Thoughts and Prayers go out to the McGrane family. Very sorry on the loss of Merle, he was a good neighbor to us the years my children and I lived right acrossed the street from you in Ionia.May God bless your family and start the healing.

  9. Thoughts and prayers to all. May his laughter be heard when he joins my dad, Tom. May the memories of all the great times carry you through into the future.

  10. Gladys, Jason, Brenda, Jim, and Mac, my sympathy and prayers to all of you. May your memories carry you through your loss and future days. I will always remember Merle and Tom visiting shortly before Tom’s passing. Now they can continue that in heaven. We are blessed to have had them enrich our lives.

  11. Gladys,Jason,Brenda,Jim and Mac,
    Will always remember the visits I had with Merle every morning when he came to work at Sara Lee, all the family reunions and family get togethers. Our prayers and thoughts are with you all in your time of sorry.
    Patrick & Cindy

  12. Thoughts and Prayers go out to the entitre McGrane Family at this difficult time. Brenda Parks & Gloria Parks

  13. To the McGrane family, thoughts and prayers are being sent your way. I don’t have too many memories of Merle just that we were neighbors when I was a little girl growing up in Elma until my mom and I moved out of the area. Hope all of you can find peace in the days ahead knowing your father, husband and brother is not suffering anymore. God bless.

  14. To The McGrane Family:
    You are in our thoughts and prayers. May God help you through the toughest of times.
    Darrell, Cindi & Logan Knecht

  15. To the McGrane family. I was saddened to receive the news of Merle’s passing. Please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers at this time.
    Phoenix, AZ

  16. Gladys and family-please accept our deepest sympathy. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this very sad time. Gary and Mary Lou Ries

  17. Gladys,
    So sorry to heat about Merle today. He always had a smile and a fighting attitude. I will miss seeing him. I am thinking of you, Jason, and Brenda with prayers and my sympathy. Take care,
    Barb and Dave Boeding

  18. Gladys, I am truly sorry for your loss, Wil passed away 5 years ago and it is still very hard. You have my deepest sympathy, you are in my prayers.

  19. Gladys, Brenda,and Jason our thoughts and prayers go out to all of you at this time. So sorry to hear of Merle’s passing.

  20. Gladys, I am so sorry for your loss. You are in my prayers and thoughts. I did not know your husband but but do know how hard it is to lose a loved one. Keep your memories close to your heart and he will always be with you. Kathy (Brummond) Roethler

  21. Sending our deepest sympathies to the immediate family. Merle was such a good guy, and had the drive to fight his ills so strongly for so many years. I am sure God has a special place in heaven for Merle, he deserves it.

    Mike and Bev Meirick

  22. Brenda and the McGrane family–
    My deepest sympathies to all of you in the passing of your father. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  23. Brenda,
    Sending our thoughts and prayers to you and your family. By how you have talked about your dad at work, I have a feeling he and God are telling stories, most of which include how proud he is of him family.

  24. Brenda, I’m extremely sorry to hear about your Dad’s passing. I know that he meant the world to you and your family. Just by the way you talked about him you could tell that you all are very close. I wish I could have met him. He will always be with you and cherish all the time and memories you have of him. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers.

  25. My thoughts and deepest sympathies are with Brenda and the McGrane family. May you find peace and strength to guide you through this difficult time.

  26. Our deepest sympathies go out to your family. Your Dad and husband was a very stong and very brave man.

  27. What I will ALWAYS remember about Merle is his sense of humor! He was a funny guy and loved to tell stories. Stories about turtle hunting and then cooking turtle stew. Stories about his traveling adventures to Arizona and California. And stories about daily life. He is a great story teller and I always enjoyed them! I know he loved his family and they will miss him very much, but he is now living the good life without pain with God above. He will now be watching over you, Gladys, Jason, and Brenda. May you all be comforted during this difficult time. My deepest sympathy to you all.


  28. I feel fortunate to have known Mr. McGrane briefly over the last year as I had the opportunity to care for him and visit with his family. I found him to be kind, thoughtful, stoic, and was blessed with a very supportive and caring family.

  29. So sad to hear of Merle’s passing. He was such a great part of our 1959 Graduation class at Immaculate Coneption Academy. He was someone you could always depend on – and was so very humble. My prayers and sorrow are extended to his wonderful family. I know they are wonderful if they were part of Merle’s world. Bless you all Judi Henderson


    1080 KELLY DR.
    NASHVILLE N.C. 27856

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