John J. Derr
HAZLETON - John J. Derr, 94, of Oelwein, Iowa and formerly of Hazleton and Arlington, died on Saturday, February 24, 2018 at Arlington Place Assisted Living in Oelwein with his family at his bedside.

Funeral service was at 10:30 AM, Thursday, March 1, at First Presbyterian Church in Hazleton with Pastor Duane Olsen officiating. Visitation was 4-8 PM on Wednesday at Jamison-Schmitz Funeral Home in Oelwein and for one hour before the service on Thursday at the church. Interment was at Floral Hills Memorial Gardens, rural Oelwein, Iowa. A memorial fund has been established in his name.

John Junior Derr, VI was born on August 28, 1923 in Edgewood, IA the son of John and Clara Belle (Moser) Derr, V. He received his education at the Mason City and Strawberry Point schools. He later completed his education by obtaining his GED in California. John was united in marriage to Evelyn June Amos on March 8, 1944 at the Emanuel Lutheran Church parsonage in Strawberry Point, IA. They were married for 66 years and farmed at Lamont, Arlington, and then in 1950 moved to the “big farm” where they farmed for 23 years, seven miles southwest of Arlington. John’s early farming career was with big draft horses which he loved, his favorites being Prince and Colonel. John was a diversified farmer with livestock and grain. In 1973 they retired to Downey, California, until they moved to Hazleton in 1983. John lived in Hazleton for 34 years before moving to Arlington Place in Oelwein in March of 2017.

John was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Hazleton, Joy Builders, Good Sam’s camping club, and card clubs. He enjoyed traveling in his retirement to visit his children and grandchildren to the four corners of the U.S.

John is survived by his four children, Judith (Vern) Wegner of Mansfield, Texas; John (Sharon) Derr of Dana Point, California, June (Mark) Birdnow of Jesup, Iowa and Janet (Frank) Belknap of Poway, California; eight grandchildren, Jeff (Debbie) Wegner, Julie (Koby) Olson, Jennifer (Gary) Weaver, Jamie (Scott) Johnson, Jeremy Birdnow (special friend Jenni), Justin (Meghan) Birdnow, Jenna Belknap, and James Belknap; 21 great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; and a special friend, Helen Hillman of Oelwein.

He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Evelyn on December 14, 2010, two brothers, Calvin and Don Derr, and a sister, Darlene Walker.
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