Clifford Carl Wiebke, 91
Clifford Carl Wiebke, age 91 of Nashua, died Monday, Feb. 27, 2023, at the Bartels Lutheran Home in Waverly.
Funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 4, 2023, at St. John Lutheran Church in Nashua, with the Rev. Todd Burrichter presiding.
Interment will follow at Oak Hill Cemetery in Nashua with Alex Wiebke, Matthew Wiebke, Shay Trask, Loran Peil, Ted Koester and Dwight Kolthoff serving as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers will be Lisa Wiebke, Karla Wiebke, Jill Rowland, Cadi Trask, Rachel Bellrichard, Elizabeth Wiebke.
Friends may greet the family from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, March 3, 2023, at Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home & Crematory/Olson Chapel in Nashua. Visitation continues an hour prior to the service on Saturday at the church.
Online condolences for the Wiebke family may be left at www.hugebackfuneralhome.com.
Clifford’s long and productive life began on Jan. 19, 1932, when his parents, Charles and Bauwina Wiebke, welcomed the youngest of their six children into the world in Waverly. He grew up on a farm between Allison and Greene, attended country school and then Allison High School.
When his father was injured in a corn-picker accident, though, Clifford had to give up his schooling and go to work full-time on the farm, but during his Air Force days, he received his GED.
Clifford served his country from 1952 to 1956, working on the “flight line,” helping jets get started. As a single guy, he often got sent on top-secret assignments and had short tours in places like Midway, Greenland and England. He liked to joke that the best parts of serving on Midway, which was mostly a Navy installation, was that “we got good food and I learned to swim in the ocean.”
Before he entered the service, he was set up on a blind date with Verna Jakel, and it was meant to be. They stayed in touch throughout his Air Force years, and on July 15, 1956, the couple was married at St. John Lutheran Church in Nashua.
Clifford and Verna moved onto her parents’ farm just west of Nashua and welcomed four children — Dennis, Dean, Linda and David. The family worked long hours on their dairy farm, but Clifford loved taking fishing trips up to Faribault, Minnesota, or just day ones to the river. He and Verna enjoyed attending their children’s many school and community activities.
After farming for almost a quarter of a century, Clifford and Verna turned the farm over to their son and moved into Nashua, where for many years he worked as a funeral assistant for Chenoweth Funeral Home.
The couple also spent many winters in Phoenix, where they bonded so well with their new friends. When they started making their winter trips to Arizona, they were “the kids” in the group and usually left after Christmas and spent January down south. Then they started to leave after Thanksgiving and soon after, they were Arizona bound by Nov. 1, to beat the snow! In all seriousness, being snowbirds brought out a whole new side of Clifford.
So, too, did his nine grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. Like many grandpas, he was way more patient with them than he was with his own children! He loved to tell them stories about farm life, telling them, with a twinkle in his eye, all the time it was just “work, work, work.”
Clifford had many interests. In addition to fishing, he loved playing cards and only God knows how many “500” games he played in his life. He also enjoyed watching sports on television, especially Iowa Hawkeye football and basketball.
And he was community minded, too. Clifford was a longtime member of the Nashua VFW post, served on the Oak Hill Cemetery Board and was a member of the St. John Church Council for many years. He also spent countless hours volunteering at the Big 4 Fair, where he was on the board of directors.
He lived a good life, and all of us who knew him will miss this kind, good-natured and hard-working man.
Clifford is survived by two sons, Dennis (Tracy) Wiebke of Nashua, and David (Polly) Wiebke of Northfield, Minnesota; one daughter, Linda (Steve) Johnson of Cedar Falls; one daughter-in-law, Anita Wiebke of Cedar Falls; nine grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and one sister, Edith Kolthoff of New Hampton.
He was preceded in death by his parents; one son, Dean Wiebke; one brother Willard Wiebke; and three sisters, Edna Peil, Wilma Lumley, and Lois Koester.