John Bixler, 84, of Oskaloosa, died Friday, November 25, 2022, at Mercy One Medical Center in Des Moines. He was born December 24, 1937, in a converted chicken house in Aromas, California. He attended school in California and grew up helping his family on the farm. On July 11, 1958, he was united in marriage to Donna Day, in Reno, Nevada. Early on John worked as a semi driver. He spent many years in the semi and had been to all 48 continental states in his truck. He later worked as a diesel mechanic, heavy equipment operator, and did construction. His last position was construction superintendent overseeing the construction of hospitals and jails. He retired for good in 2010. He was a member of the First Christian Church in Oskaloosa. John’s family was the center of his world, he always looked forward to going to his children and grandchildren’s events. He loved to “fill in” for Santa during the holidays and watch his grandchildren’s eyes light up when he found their gift in his bag. Not only did he enjoy filling in for Santa, but he truly enjoyed being the elf and making the gifts. He was a talented woodworker and enjoyed helping family with projects. He had a kind and gentle spirit and was looked at as a father figure by many.
His family includes his wife of over 64 years, Donna Bixler of Oskaloosa; three children and their spouses, Jim and Angela Bixler of Rose Hill, Laurie and Stuart Valster of Knoxville, and John and Lesa Bixler of Oskaloosa; eleven grandchildren, Ryan Bixler, Andrew Bixler, Jessica Bixler, Kyle Bixler, Tara Netten, Joshua Valster, Christopher Valster, Alexandria Valster, Courtney Bettis, Cora Bixler, and Benjamin Bixler; sixteen great grandchildren; a sister-in-law, Helen Bixler; and many nieces and nephews.
John was preceded by his parents; and a brother, Allen Wayne Bixler.
A memorial service will be held Friday, December 2, 2022, at 10:30 a.m. in the Bates Funeral Chapel in Oskaloosa with Reverend Robert Goodrich officiating. As was John’s wish his body has been cremated. The Bates Funeral Chapel is in charge of the arrangements.
Visitation will begin Thursday after 11 a.m. in the Bates Funeral Chapel and the family will be at the funeral chapel from 5-7 Thursday evening to greet friends and relatives. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the family.