Erlin, then stationed at Camp Pendleton in CA, was able to visit him during boot camp at San Diego in 1953. Don and Darlene had a son Bruce born in Miami, FL. They came back to Decorah to live with Don’s parents for about a year before moving to CA in 1955. Don bought a retired school bus, removed the seats, and used it as a moving van. Don and Darlene later adopted 2 girls: Melissa Kay and Stephanie Lorraine. Don and Darlene were divorced.

On 30 Sep 1972 Don and Madeline May (Pirie) O'Boyle (b. 31 Mar 1940) were married in Sacramento, CA. Madeline has 2 daughters from a previous marriage: Karen Marie O’Boyle and Tara Louise O’Boyle.

While living in Sacramento Don was employed as a Vector Control Specialist for the California Department of Health. He has now retired from that position but continues to work with disposal of low-level radioactive waste for a group of states. He and Madeline live about 50 miles north of Sacramento in Sutter Creek.

Womeldorf, Erlin and Lilly (Hamre)

(Lilly Womeldorf)

Erlin Charles Womeldorf was born 6 Nov 1923 on the family farm south of Decorah, IA to Albert and Johanna (Johnson) Womeldorf, the third of 4 sons. His 3 brothers are Walter, Roger and Donald. Erlin attended Blount School near Decorah through 8th grade and graduated from Decorah High School in 1941. He attended one winter quarter at Iowa State College, Ames, where he took the herdsman course. He farmed at home with his father and worked during the winter months in Cedar Rapids for Collins Radio, Wilsons, and Turner Mortuary (microphone division).

The summer of 1939 Don and Erlin accompanied their parents to Washington State where they stayed with Johanna’s cousin Bennie Johnson. A canvas stack cover was thrown over the car when they camped along the way, usually in farm yards. Another memorable time was in the early 1940’s before brother Roger went overseas in the service. He offered Erlin his 1930 Chevy coupe if he would come to get it. Erlin and Walter took the train which was crowded with troops to New River, NC. They spent some time with Roger before he was sent to fight the Japanese in the South Pacific.

In Mar of 1946 Erlin and his good friend Robert Lensch joined the U.S. Marine Corps for a two-year enlistment. Erlin was stationed at El Toro, CA in the 1st Marine Air Wing. Following discharge from the service he enlisted in the reserves and was called to active duty in Dec of 1950. After attending an Army school (Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare) in Maryland, he trained recruits for the Korean War as a member of the ‘Aggressor Forces" at Camp Pendleton, CA. He was released from active duty with the rank of sergeant in 1953.

Erlin enrolled at Upper Iowa University, Fayette, IA under the Gl Bill and graduated in May of 1956. While he was a student at UIU he married Lilly Hamre on 2 Apr 1954. They took a trip to CA that Aug camping along the way in a pup tent. While attending school at UIU son Roger was born in West Union, IA. After graduation Erlin taught a year at Calamus, IA after attending summer school at Iowa University, but decided to move back to Decorah to farm. They lived on the Johnson-Womeldorf farm by Siewer’s Spring before buying the “Glise” farm (also known as the “Nefstad" farm from earlier days) from Bob Lensch in 1958. Erlin dairy farmed until the fall of 1962 and worked for Langs Dairy Equipment for a short time until accepting a teaching position at South Winneshiek Schools at Calmar for the fall of 1963. In 1966 a neighboring farm to the south was bought, from which 113 acres were added to the original farm. By attending summer school at Drake University in Des Moines and taking night classes at the University of Northern Iowa, Erlin graduated from UNI in 1969 with a master's degree in Guidance and Counseling. He was a counselor at South Winneshiek through the 1980-81 school year. Son Roger was very much interested in farming and began a dairy herd his senior year in high school (1974) and continued farming the home place after graduation until 1987. After Roger's move from the farm Eriing retired from active farming but he and his wife continue to live on the farm.

Bio Photo

Lilly and Erlin Womeldorf April 2, 1954

Erlin is an avid reader and is known for his quick wit. In retirement he continues the upkeep of the farm and harvests enough wood to burn in two wood-burning stoves.

Erlin and Lilly’s children are: Roger Paul; Joan Marie; and Beth Ellen. (See their family histories.)

Womeldorf, Fred and Freda (Josvanger)

(Frances M. Jeffers)

Frederick Womeldorf, born 25 Jan 1892, was the second son of L. Nelson and Aasine (Anderson) Womeldorf. Frederick "Fred" was baptized 10 Jun 1892 in Big Canoe Lutheran Church. The Womeldorf family moved to Colo


Partial OCR transcription, some sensitive personal information such as birth dates of people that maybe living is not included.

See the associated scan to compare with the published information.

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this page was last updated on Tuesday, 30 March 2021