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CLAASSEN, Diedrich 1875-1939


Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 9/7/2012 at 18:25:02

Pay A Final Tribute To Mr. D. Claassen

A Great Number Of Friends Gathered Saturday Afternoon To Pay Their Last Respects

Was Prominent Figure

Mr. Claassen Was A Leader In Our Public Life Over The Span Of More Than A Generation

Funeral services were held Saturday afternoon, January 21, for D. Claassen, one of the best known of Wellsburg men, who passed away Wednesday evening after an illness of about a week. His death, coming suddenly, was a distinct shock to all Wellsburg people since it was not generally known that his illness was serious. A huge concourse of friends and relatives were gathered to pay their final respects to the departed whosse place in the community will be hard to fill.

The services were conducted by the Rev. Wm. Bode and the Rev. Wm. Landsiedel, both old friends of the deceased, both of whom spoke of the services Mr. Claassen had rendered to the community in which he had made his home over the span of forty six years.

Music was furnished by Mrs. Clarence Beecroft and Mrs. Martin Boeke who sang two of Mr. Claassen's favorite hymns, "I Hear in the Air" and "Good Night and Good Morning" with Mrs. B. C. Koolman at the piano. Casket bearers were: W. H. Meyer, H. C. Neessen, J. L. Fischer, H. J. Vahlsing, C. A. Tellier and Don Faris, men with whom he was in close association as secretary of the School Board, which post he had occupied for many years capably and conscientiously.

Diedrich Claassen was born October 24, 1875, in Emden, Eastfriesland, Germany. After the sacrament of baptism had been administered to him in early infancy and when he had become of school age, he attended the Evangelical Reformed Elementary School from which he was graduated March 18, 1889, receiving a certificate of honor. During the same period he went to school he received his religious training under the Rev. O. Zillessen, minister of the Reformed church in Emden, and was confirmed in that church on April 10, 1892, receiving for his confirmation scripture Ps. 119, verse 9: "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to thy word." For three years he was employed in the Government telegraph office as an assistant telegrapher. At the age of 17 years he contemplated following his brother to America which plan materialized in August 1883[sic] and thus he came to make his home in Wellsburg, Iowa. For five years he was engaged in various positions when on August 28, 1898 he was employed by Mr. John Tjaden in the Wellsburg Savings Bank, where after 34 years of able service he finished his work in October 1932.

He was joined in holy wedlock with Lula Akkerman March 18, 1903, and with her made his permanent home in Wellsburg. The Lord blessed their union with four children, one daughter and three sons. The deceased with his beloved companion affiliated himself as an active member with the Second Christian Reformed Church of Wellsburg in 1919 which he faithfully served for 12 years in the capacity of Sunday School Secretary.

Many were the experiences and hardships during the past decade which had a great influence upon his health until the load became so heavy that his heart had to suffer for it; nevertheless, it caused him to take refuge to an all forgiving and merciful God in Christ upon whose saving grace and merits he relied when the treacherous announcement of death made itself known unto him for the first time about a week ago from which he seemed to rally. But where man proposes, God disposes. The day before his passing he was very concerned about the futile past of his life and seemed to find comfort in that special scripture of Paul, "Where sin aboundeth, the grace of God aboundeth much more," and "let my grace be sufficient in thee, for my strength is perfect in weakness," and "the blood of Jesus Christ the Son of God, cleanseth us from all sin." I am thankful, he said, "that the Lord extended to me a time of grace through my illness." It was on Wednesday evening that the Lord spared him from the unmerciful and cruel judgement of men, and took him silently and unexpectedly through a sudden heart attack, and as we sincerely hope, unto his merciful and peaceful presence. Thus, his earthly pilgrimage came to a sudden termination Wednesday, January 18, at 7:30 p.m. permitting him to reach the age of 63 years, 2 months, and 25 days.

Our heart goes out in sympathy to the bereaved family, to his sorely afflicted companion with her sorrowing children, in the loss of their beloved husband and father. Following are the names of the children who mourn the loss of their father, Ella, Mrs. Glenn Hamilton, of Iowa Falls, Richard and Mrs. Claassen, Virgil and Thomas of Wellsburg. Also four grandchildren, and three sisters and one brother: Mrs. H. Kiekeebn, Mrs. Fred Sauwasch, Mrs. Jacob Janssen, all of Emden Germany, John Claassen of Grundy Center, mourn his departure. One brother Albert Claassen of Baltimore, Maryland, preceded him in death. Many other relatives and a host of friends from both sides of the mourning family feel his sudden loss. May the God of all comfort according to his promise console and assuage all sorrowing hearts and substitute every loss.

Who knows, how near my end may be?
Time speeds away and death comes on,
How swiftly, O how suddenly may death be here and Life be gone,
My God, for Jesus sake I pray: Thy peace may bless my dying day.

Relatives and friends who attended the funeral from a distance are as follows: Mr. Mike Akkerman, Mr. Jake Akkerman, Mr. John Akkerman, and Ed Akkerman, Rock Rapids, Iowa; Oltman Reemts, and Thos. Reemts, of Rock Rapids, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. John Kaiser, Louis Kaiser, and Clara Wright of Rockford, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. J. Kaiser, Jr., of George, Iowa; Dick Buss, Luverne, Minnesota; Mr. and Mrs. H. Flessner, Parkersburg; Mr. and Mrs. Mike Akkerman and Mr. and Mrs. Lube Lubbens, Buffalo Center, Iowa; Mr. Frank Schultz, Livermore, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Art Remus, Luverne, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Bryan Oglesby, Mason City, Iowa; Guy Lansing and Beverly Lansing, Bode, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Fred Claassen, Mr. and Mrs. Herman Claassen, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Bauer, Mr. and Mrs. Rube Schultz, Mr. and Mrs. Louis Schultz, Mr. and Mrs. Chas. Schultz, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Schultz, Louise Williams, and Mr. August Carsten and daughter Wilma and Mr. and Mrs. Tom Tripp, Ackley, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Lee Wagner, Mrs. R. T. Hamilton, Mrs. Dave Hamilton, Mr. and Mrs. J. C. Hamilton, Mr. and Mrs. L. O. Warman, and Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Staley, Iowa Falls; Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Getting, Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Brown, and Mrs. Florance Meyer, Marshalltown, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Renken and family, Aplington, Iowa; Mrs. Coert Evans, Leon, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. John Fischer, Toledo, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Ben Geerdes, Wellsburg, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Eldrege Meyer, and Mr. and Mrs. Kruger, Grundy; Mr. and Mrs. H. Rust, Holland, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Glen Smith, Mrs. M. Caughey, and Mrs. D. Mahaffy, Grinnell, Iowa; Robert Secord, Randolph, Nebraska; Miss Arlene Laemle, Eldora, Iowa; Mrs. Frank Hamilton, and Raymond, Sheffield, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Lou Johnson, Mr. and Mrs. Ubbe Peters, Steamboat Rock, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. J. J. Chukker, Greene, Iowa; and Mrs. Jay Hileman, Waterloo, Iowa.

--Wellsburg Herald (Wellsburg, Iowa), 25 January 1939


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