Dick Barkema Jr., 95, Goodell, died July 25, 2021 at the Iowa Specialty Hospital - Belmond. Services will be Friday, July 30 at 10 a.m. at the Goodell United Methodist Church. Burial will take place at Amsterdam Cemetery, Goodell. Visitation will be Thursday from 5-7 p.m. at Ewing Funeral Home in Belmond.
Dick was born March 8, 1926 on the family farm, the ninth child of Dick and Minnie (Pals) Barkema. He was baptized in Immanuel Reformed Church. He received his education at Pleasant Township District #2 school where he attended through the 8th grade. He still had a certificate from 1937 that he received for 150 perfect spelling lessons. He worked on the family farm until he was 18. He also worked for his brother Lambert on his farm.
Dick enlisted in the United States Army in 1946 and served in Japan with the 2nd Squadron, 5th Cavalry Regiment. He was honorably discharged in 1948. His discharge papers described his civilian occupation as “Farmer: Cultivated the ground, planted seeds and harvested crops.” He then worked on his brother Ben’s farm where he met his future wife. He did custom hay baling and worked for a time at the Rath packing plant in Waterloo. He enjoyed softball and played on a team while in the Army and for Elliot’s Hardware in Belmond. He liked to talk about one game when he hit two home runs and his team won the game.
Dick married Catherine Halfpop on September 26, 1953 at the EUB Church in Goodell. They moved to a farm west of Goodell where he made his living for 65 years as a crop and livestock farmer. In 1960 he was named Iowa Master Swine Producer. Dick volunteered many years on the Goodell Fire Department and served as a member of the Belmond Community School Board.
After retirement, Dick and Catherine enjoyed summers in Walker, MN and winters in Apache Junction, AZ. His hobby in later years was going to farm auctions and coming home with a load of “miscellaneous.” In 2018 he moved to The Meadows Assisted Living in Clarion. It was a big adjustment for him, but he made many friends and was well cared for.
While in hospice care last week at Iowa Specialty Hospital, the hospice chaplain and Dick’s children surrounded him to say the Lord’s Prayer. Although Dick had spoken very little during this time, he recited the prayer with his family word for word. Dick’s faith was strong; his love for his family even stronger. “And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13
Dick was preceded in death by his wife Catherine; granddaughters Megan Ann and Marissa Sue Barkema; his parents; and nine brothers and sisters.
He is survived by his children Barbara Schaefer (Tina), Keith (Sharon) Barkema, Mark (Nancy) Barkema, and Dick A. (Sarah) Barkema; grandchildren Lisa (Kyle) Barkema, Tim (Trisha) Tegland, Mindy (Pete) Dahlstrom, Marcus (Josie) Barkema, Michelle (Dylan) Braly, Amanda, Casandra and Taylor Barkema, and Matt, Nick and Emily Martinson; great-grandchildren Tate, Tess, Thad, Maile, Jacob, Joey, Weston, Joslyn, Riley, Kaelynn and Lily; and brothers-in-law Bernard Halfpop and Herman Suntken.