Bernard Van Aartsen
Bernard “Bernie” Van Aartsen, 90, Rock Rapids, Iowa, died Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, at Prairie Ridge Care Center in Orange City, Iowa.
A funeral was Tuesday, Oct. 4, at First Reformed Church in Rock Rapids. Burial followed at Riverview Cemetery in Rock Rapids.
Bernard Van Aartsen was born April 7, 1926, to Henry and Jenny (Roelofs) Van Aartsen at Hawarden, Iowa. When he was a boy, his family lived on farms in Iowa near Lebanon, Sioux Center, Middleburg, Matlock and Hull, before moving to a farm south of Rock Rapids in 1942. Bernie attended country school in Matlock and Hull.
Bernard married Tillie Beyenhof on Dec. 12, 1947, at First Reformed Church in Rock Rapids. Bernie and Tillie moved to Luverne in 1951 and to Hardwick in 1958, having farmed near both communities. Along with farming, Bernie began transporting eggs for M & J.R. Hakes in 1960 and later for Safeway Food Stores throughout the region. In 1963 the family moved to a farm southwest of Rock Rapids. He also worked as a crop insurance adjuster for 20-plus years. In 1973 Bernie purchased an apartment complex and managed that for several years. Bernie and Tillie retired from farming in 1994 and moved to a home in Rock Rapids next to the apartment building. In August of 2012 Bernie’s wife Tillie died. Bernie remained living in their home in Rock Rapids until 2015 when he entered Prairie Ridge Care Center in Orange City.
Bernie was a member of the First Reformed Church in Rock Rapids He was an elder, taught catechism, and sang with the church choir. He also sang with the Sheldon Chordmasters Barbershop Chorus for a few years. He enjoyed fishing and classic cars. Most of all, he enjoyed his family.
He is survived by three children, Douglas (Sharon) Van Aartsen, Ireton, Iowa, Sandra (Lee) Van Veldhuizen, Sioux Center, Iowa, and Scott (Allison) Van Aartsen, Rock Rapids; nine grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; two brothers, John (Ruth) Van Aartsen, Rock Rapids, and Henry (Marlys) Van Aartsen, Orange City, Iowa; a sister, Jane Albers, Rock Rapids; a sister-in-law, Mary Ann Van Aartsen, Luverne; and many nieces, nephews and other friends and relatives.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Tillie Van Aartsen; an infant brother; a sister, Hermina Boote; a brother, Gerrit Van Aartsen; and three brothers-in-law: John Boote, Leonard Lens, and Marvin Albers.
Arrangements were by Jurrens Funeral Home of Rock Rapids, www.jurrensfuneralhome.com.