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Elvin L. Ketelsen

September 23, 1928 ~ February 23, 2022 (age 93)

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Elvin L. Ketelsen, 93, of Onawa, Iowa, formerly of Turin, Iowa, passed away Wednesday, February 23, 2022 at Elmwood Care Centre, Onawa, Iowa.

A memorial service will be 11:00 A.M. Tuesday, March 1, 2022 at the Goslar Funeral Home Chapel, Onawa, Iowa with Pastor Paul Coen, officiating. A live stream of the service will be posted on the Goslar Funeral Home website with Elvin’s obituary. Burial will follow in the Belvidere Cemetery, rural Turin, Iowa. Arrangements are under the direction of Goslar Funeral Home and Monuments, Onawa, Iowa.

Elvin LeRoy Ketelsen was born on September 23, 1928 in Mondamin, Iowa to Ella Dierks Ketelsen and H. Peter Ketelsen. Elvin went to a small rural school in Dow City, Iowa. His family moved to a farm near Charter Oak, Iowa and he attended a Lutheran school in Charter Oak through the eighth grade. He then left school to work on the family farm. Elvin was confirmed at St. John's Lutheran church March 29, 1942.

He met the love of his life LaJeanne Rohde of Castana, Iowa and they married on July 4, 1949 in Charter Oak, Iowa. They took residency in a home outside of Mapleton, Iowa and he went to work on a government watershed project for two years. Elvin then worked driving a truck for Suiter and Company. He later accepted a position farming the land for Thayer Brown in 1953 at which time he moved his family to a farm outside of Turin, Iowa. Elvin spent most of his lifetime farming and providing for his family. Education was of importance to him and he received his high school diploma on June 20, 1969. He semi-retired in1988 and moved to Onawa, Iowa. He helped Thayer Brown II for several years during the planting and harvesting seasons until he fully retired.

Elvin enjoyed a simple life and cherished his family above all else. Often family gatherings were planned on the weekends involving card playing and home cooked meals. He liked to travel taking his family on a trip every year to a new destination usually in the great American west. When time allowed Elvin would spend his time tinkering in his shop on projects, repairing something or building bird houses. He had a green thumb and could often be found gardening, growing black diamond watermelons, cantaloupes, sweetcorn and other vegetables for the family dinner table. His greatest love was for his flowers, especially his roses. He will be in all of our hearts forever.

He is survived by his wife of 72 years, LaJeanne; six children, Lynn Ketelsen and wife Sheri, Kevin Ketelsen and wife Barbara, Kim Ketelsen and wife Peg, Marva Ketelsen, Mark Ketelsen and wife Holly, and Brenda Yarnell; twelve grandchildren; fifteen great-grandchildren; 2 great-great-grandchildren; and one sister-in-law, Sherry Ketelsen.

Elvin is preceded in death by his parents; one sister, Rosemary Anderson; four brothers, Elmer, DeLaine, Henry and his wife Colleen, and Darrell; and son in law, Randy Yarnell.

Condolences may be left online for the family at


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Memorial Service
March 1, 2022

11:00 AM
Goslar Funeral Home Chapel
1629 10th Street
Onawa, IA 51040

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