The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


January 9, 2013

Gary Clark Ketelsen

BETTENDORF — April 8, 1938 - Jan. 7, 2013

Gary Clark Ketelsen, 74, passed away January 7th, 2013, at the Genesis Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House in Bettendorf.

The Lemke South Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements. In accordance with Gary’s wishes, there was no public visitation. A gathering of close friends and relatives was held today, followed by a private family gravesite burial at the Clinton Lawn Cemetery with associate Pastor Joshua Martyn from Zion Lutheran Church officiating.

Gary was born April 8th, 1938 in Clinton, Iowa, to Marjorie Clark and Carl Ketelsen. His father, Carl, died 9 months later, January 11, 1939.

Gary was raised on his grandparents; Joseph (Vern) and Nellie Clarks farm, north of Clinton. When Gary was 7 years old, his mother married Elmer Ullrich and then they all lived on the farm with the grandparents and farmed.

Gary went to school, kindergarten thru ninth grade, in a one-room country school house, then he attended Lyons High School for 2 years and graduated from Clinton High School.

In 1954, his grandparents sold their farm to their daughter and son-in-law, and the grandparents moved to town. That summer, Gary lived and worked on the Art Marx farm and in the fall, he started working at the Eagle Market. After high school, he was employed at Ozark Airlines in Chicago and later at the Clinton Airport.

On January 12, 1958, Gary married Joyce Gertsen at Zion Lutheran Church in Clinton. Both Gary and Joyce graduated from Clinton High School in 1956.

Gary learned the upholstery and refinishing of furniture trade, from his father-in-law, William Gertsen; and for 40 years owned and operated, Gary’s Furniture and Carpet Installation Service, retiring in 2001.

In 1963, Gary became employed at a new factory in Clinton, called Hawkeye Chemical Company, renamed P.C.S. Arcadian Corporation. He was in both the production and maintenance departments; retiring after 38 years of service, when the plant closed in 2001.

Being they both were retired, Gary and Joyce moved to the Quad Cities to live closer to their family; and followed their grandchildren’s participation in school, sports and many other activities.

Gary was a lifetime member of the Zion Lutheran Church and was baptized in 1938 and confirmed in 1951. He served as a Sunday school teacher and on various committees.

He was a member of the International Chemical Worker’s Union, serving as Pres., V.P. and Chief Stewart, on the board of director’s. He was a member of the Jaycees; Moose Club; and Izaak Walton League, serving on the board of directors at Ikes.

Survivors include his wife of nearly 55 years, Joyce, two daughters; Kristine Kelly and her husband, Anthony Clarence; and Kimberly Ann and her husband, Paul James; 8 grandchildren; step-sister, Bethey Ullrich (Gary) McDaniel; nephews, nieces, and several cousins.

In addition to his parents, Carl and Marjorie Ketelsen Ullrich; he was preceded in death by Elmer Ullrich and several aunts, uncles, and cousins. Recently Gary’s Aunt, Henrietta Ketelsen Schmidt died, on December 22nd, 2012.

Honorary pallbearers were Gary’s first cousins; Larry, Richard, Kenneth, Marvin, Allan, Joel, David and Ronald Ketelsen; and Donald Schmidt, Darrell Kohrt,; Jeff Ullrich and Darrryl Gruhn.

Other honorary pallbearers included, Gary McDaniel; Jack Reed; Dick Miller; Harlan Marx; Richard Evers; DeLaus Zenk; Alan Murphy; Gene Olson; Ray Borrison; Larry Raymond; Thomas Mulholland; Don Manning.

It is suggested, memorials to be donated to the University of Iowa Liver Cancer Foundation or the Zion Lutheran Church, 428 3rd Avenue South, Clinton, Iowa, 52732 or a charity of your choice.

The family would like to thank the Genesis Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House for the excellent and compassionate care they provided Gary.

Death date: Jan. 7, 2013

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