Cover photo for Austin Owen Fernow's Obituary
Austin Owen Fernow Profile Photo

Austin Owen Fernow

April 4, 1933 — September 22, 2023

Grundy Center

Austin Owen Fernow


On September 22, 2023, Austin “Woody” Fernow made his final transfer after battling Parkinson’s disease for several months. He was a resident at Creekside, Inc. in Grundy Center.

No funeral services are scheduled at this time, but a celebration of life and memorial event will be planned at a future date.

Austin “Woody” Owen Fernow was born April 4, 1933, in Marion, Iowa, to Wilson Clark Fernow and Marguerite Austin Fernow. He grew up in Cedar Rapids, graduating from Franklin High School in 1951, and then Coe College in 1955 with a sociology degree and series of family moves during a 22-year Air Force career. Military duties featured computer programming and radar intercept control. Austin attained the rank of Lt. Colonel, earning the Bronze Star and other service awards.

In 1976, Austin retired from military service, assuming the role of equipment manager for Evans Farms.

Throughout his life, Austin had been involved with Boy Scouts of America, as a Scout himself (achieving the rank of Eagle Scout), then as a volunteer in many leadership positions, with many councils, at many levels, earning many awards, including the Silver Beaver.

Austin was preceded in death by his parents, sisters Louise (Dale) Morgan and Dorothy (Glenn) Rapp, stepfather Harold Henning, and stepbrother Gene Henning.

Survivors are his wife, Judith; daughter Jean (Don) Garaventa of rural Reinbeck; son Nathan (Deb) of Birmingham, Alabama; son Douglas (Ruth) of Corinth, Texas; 5 grandchildren; and 3 great-grandchildren.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Austin Owen Fernow, please visit our flower store.


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