Gerald Houk


Gerald Robert Houk, 73, of Ottumwa, died at 6:25 a.m. February 5, 2022 surrounded by his family at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City.

He was born October 3, 1948 in Ottumwa to Vern S. and Ruby N. Richards Houk. He married the love of his life, Sheila Lynn Hannam March 13, 1971.

Growing up on the family farm in Davis County, Bob graduated from Cardinal Community High School in 1966. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1966 to 1970, during the Vietnam War. He worked as a machinist for John Deere Ottumwa Works, retiring in 1994.

He was a member of St. Patrick Catholic Church, UAW Local #74 and O.B. Nelson Post #3 American Legion. Bob loved being outdoors. He enjoyed fishing and hunting with his dogs; taking all of his grandkids hunting through the years. Bob had a green thumb, raising beautiful vegetable gardens. He especially loved being with his family.

Surviving is his wife of 50 years, Sheila; three daughters, Amy (Jeff) Houk-Clark, Dee Reese and Sara Houk all of Ottumwa; eight grandchildren, Morgan (Clayton) Moyer, Taylor Clark (fiancé, Chance Dickenson), Joey Clark, Will Reese (fiancé, Michelle Van Fleet), Jacob Reese, Makenzie “Kenzie” Houk, Madelyn “Mady” Houk and Mylee Houk-Batterson; four great grandchildren; Ruby Anita Moyer, Ryker Lane Clark, Covah Elizabeth Dickenson and Cadence Elizabeth Shields; two sisters, Evelyn (Jerry) Fisk of Kansas City, MO and Joyce (Rex) Foster of rural Bloomfield; brother-in-law and sisters-in-law, Bill (Carolyn) Hannam of Kirksville, MO and Casenda Puffinbarger of Liberty, IA.

He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother and sister-in-law, Gilbert and Betty Houk; an infant sister, Doris Houk; an infant brother, Joseph Houk; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Bill and Marcella Hannam; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Mike Hannam, Junior Howk, Kay Reed and Helene Skinner.

Private funeral services will be held at Reece Funeral Home with Fr. Patrick Hilgendorf and Chaplain Doug McAntire officiating. Military services will be conducted by O.B. Nelson Post #3 American Legion and Walter B. Schafer Post #775 Veterans of Foreign Wars. Cremation will follow the service. Private inurnment will be in Calvary Cemetery.

For those unable to attend the service, you may view the service after 11 a.m. Thursday, February 9th on the Reece Funeral Home Facebook page. Online condolences may be left for the family at

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Iowa Heart Association or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

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