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Fisch Funeral Home & Monuments
Sunday October 22nd, 2017
5:00pm - 5:00pm

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John Vander Molen

John R. “Wimp” Vander Molen, 88, of Remsen, Iowa, passed away Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017 at Plymouth Manor Care Center in Le Mars, Iowa.

Funeral Service will be 10:30 a.m. Monday, Oct. 23, 2017 at Fisch Funeral Home & Monument in Remsen, IA with hospice chaplain Marie Lykken officiating. Burial will follow at St. Mary's Cemetery in Remsen, IA. Graveside military honors will be conducted by American Legion Post 220 and V.F.W. Post 3328 of Remsen. Visitation with family present will be from 5-7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017 at Fisch Funeral Home & Monument in Remsen. Condolences can be sent online to www.fischfh.com

John was born August 9, 1929, to Louis and Agnes (De Vries) Vander Molen, and raised on farms in the Craig, Maurice and Struble areas. His Uncle Dan nicknamed him “Wimp” because, like Wimpy from “Popeye,” he loved burgers.

He served in the Korean War 1952-1953, 8th Army, 2nd Infantry Division “Second to None,” 131st Trans. Trk. Co. He instilled a strong sense of duty, service, and pride of country in his children and grandchildren.

He met Mary E. Schilmoeller at Archie's Waeside, and they were married a year later on January 31, 1955. They lived on farms in the Struble & Maurice areas before moving to a farm near Remsen in 1970. Together they raised seven children.

John drove truck for Phil Groetken and Sioux City Motor Express, and would recount his trucking days to anyone who'd listen. He hauled everything from ammunition in Korea to rodeo stock with Ozzie Arens.

John farmed most of his life, and ran “Wimp's Shelling Service” for a number of years. “You pick 'em, we peel 'em.” He enjoyed driving around in his Ford pick-up admiring crops and livestock in the area. He loved his sweet corn. Any raccoon or varmint that stepped foot on his land received swift justice.

John was an honest man, a good story-teller, and a great listener.

He is survived by 5 children: Ken and his wife Starla of Rapid City, SD, Douglas of Sioux Falls, SD, Mark and his wife Mary of Remsen, IA, Todd of Sioux City, IA, and Jodi and her husband Yogesh Chawla of Madison, WI; a sister, Leona Schat of Rapid City, SD, and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his wife Mary; two sons, Terry and Bradley; two brothers, Lloyd and Allen (who died in infancy); and a sister, Gertie.

Casket bearers will be grandsons Benji Vander Molen and Cory Vander Molen, nephew Mike Vander Molen, and friends Kory Kroeger, Steve Niehus, and Arlie Pick.

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of John Molen, please visit our flower store.


I will miss you, grandpa. Sorry I couldn't make it to your funeral due to my health problems. You will be remembered tonight at our church memorial service along with grandma. Proud farmer, proud veteran, proud grandpa. Rest in peace. Love you grandpa.

Andrew Goulette Nov 30 -0001 12:00 AM

Our deepest sympathies. Al has fond Memories growing up and spending time on the VanderMolen farm. Al & Missy Harnack

Melissa Harnack Nov 30 -0001 12:00 AM

Years ago I was driving water trucks out to the teragators at the Remsen Roller Mill, John was having a cup of coffee and we started talking about all the hogs that were being delivered to Storm Lake from Canada, where they could use certain drugs that we couldn't use in ...

Joseph L Harpenau Nov 30 -0001 12:00 AM

john and the gang were good neighbors. lots of memories with that crew. our sympathies.

dave wiebke Nov 30 -0001 12:00 AM