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Lafe Wirtz

By Ellis Codjoe, July 09, 2018

Lafe Marvin Wirtz, 83, of Ottumwa died July 4, 2018 at Mercy Medical Center in Des Moines.

He was born June 20, 1935 in Pilot Mound, IA to Lafe and Hazel Wirtz.    He married Catherine Harvey on May 29, 1969 and she preceded him in death on May 29, 2017.

Lafe served in the U.S. Air Force.  A resident of Ottumwa since 1999, he worked road construction, at Excel, as a security guard and trash collector.

Lafe enjoyed fishing, crafts, watching birds and squirrels as well as westerns.   He also liked telling jokes and taking care of his cats and dogs.  He loved spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Surviving are his children, Tim “Cage” McGowen Wirtz of Casper, WY, Kelly Wirtz of St. Paul, MN, Lafe “Dean” (Judy) Wirtz Jr. of Lake City, IA, Bobby Joe (Stacy) Wirtz of Altoona, IA, Kandi Harvey (Don Schermerhorn), Kim (Ron) Ross and Sharjane (Bob) Large all of Ottumwa; a step-daughter Kristina (Larry) Peterson of Forrest City, IA;  19 grandchildren including: Randi, Ethan, Brittany, Breanna, Cassie, Sonja, Donald Jr, Travis, Michael, Jenelle, Crystal, Elizabeth, Brittany Price whom he helped raise,  Breeanna, Dustin, Raven, Rosemary, Larry Jr. and Amy; 23 great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents, a son, Tom McGowen Wirtz, a daughter, Susan McGowen Wirtz, a brother Mike Wirtz and a grandson, Jared Daniel Schermerhorn.

Funeral services will be 1 p.m. Monday at Reece Funeral Home.  Military services will be conducted by Walter B. Schafer Post #775 Veterans of Foreign Wars and O.B. Nelson Post #3 American Legion.

Visitation will begin at 9 a.m. Monday with the family present one hour prior to the service.

Memorials may be made to Walter B. Schafer Post #775 Veterans of Foreign Wars.

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