Harold Dean Aukes, 80 of Wellsburg, Iowa passed away on Wednesday, November 30, 2022, at his home.
Funeral services for Harold will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, December 7, 2022, at Cornerstone Presbyterian Church located at 10164 D Ave., Ackley, IA 50601. Pastor Elton Labree will officiate the service. Public visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, December 6 at Abels Funeral Home, 304 N. Adams St., Wellsburg, IA 50680. Following the funeral, Harold will be laid to rest at the Pleasant Valley United Methodist Church Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be directed in Harold’s name to his family which will be designated elsewhere at a later date. For further information or to leave a condolence please visit www.abelsfuneralhomes.com.
Harold Dean Aukes was born on November 9, 1942, in Aplington, Iowa, the son of Harm and Lena (Rewerts) Aukes. He attended country school in Buck Grove and graduated from Wellsburg High School with the class of 1961. On June 19, 1964, he was united in marriage to his high school sweetheart and love of his life, Roberta Renken in Aplington, Iowa. From this union the couple were blessed with three children: Bradley, Brent, and Anita.
Harold was a hardworking man, having worked for 12 years at Potgieter Elevator in Wellsburg and then for 30 years at John Deere Engine Works, where he made many long-lasting friends. He had a quick wit and was always ready for a good laugh. Harold had a strong faith in God and rarely missed worship at Pleasant Valley United Methodist Church until it recently closed. He served on the board, participated in Bible study and taught Sunday School. Harold was a Boy Scout and served as a Boy Scout leader. When the time came to raise funds for a new library in Wellsburg, Harold was happy to be an essential member of the team to raise money for the new facility. Harold was a cancer survivor and was active in Relay for Life.
Harold had a boyish curiosity to learn how to do things, and taught himself many skills such as chair caning, glass cutting, and how to play both the guitar and violin. He learned these crafts long before YouTube and you’d never catch him on the “dot com”. He passed on this love of knowledge to his children, always encouraging them to pursue their interests and try anything once, within reason! Harold loved music and passed it on to his children with songs every night before prayers.
Harold loved IPTV, the Smithsonian Channel, Readers Digest quizzes, word finds, crossword puzzles, and brain teasers. He usually had a jigsaw puzzle tipped out on the table and would also spend hours at the library, trying to complete their puzzle too. Harold was an accomplished gardener, with gardens both in town and at his son’s acreage. He loved to share and deliver produce to his neighbors. He planted many trees. He loved hunting, fishing, woodworking, live music, bonfires at Whiskee Junxshun, and looked forward to attending Antique Acres every year. Harold enjoyed visits to his out-of-state children in Illinois and Alabama. Harold’s favorite things were simple: riding his bike, Doritos, ice cream sandwiches, dry roasted peanuts, and buffets – especially Pizza Ranch. He was a lifetime fan of Taylor’s Maid Rites. Harold never said no to helping someone, and he was always eager for a visit on his yard, where he loved to sit in his lawn chair and do crossword puzzles. He loved to speak the old German, especially to his kids and grandkids, who didn’t understand a word. He found it hilarious. Harold was so friendly; he never knew a stranger.
Harold loved God. He instilled in his children to always be helpful, kind, and polite. He was a dedicated husband and visited Roberta almost every day in the nursing home. During the Covid 19 pandemic, he’d send gifts inside and stand by her window so he could see her while they spoke on the phone. Harold always had a smile, no matter what adversity he faced.
Left to cherish his memory are his children: Bradley (Samantha) Aukes, Brent (Kristy) Aukes and Anita (Danton) Burkett; grandchildren: Lexy (Adam) Brown, Austin Aukes (Taylor Ingram), Katelynn Aukes, Robert Aukes (Ari Nottrott), Ryley Aukes, Reese Aukes, Taylor Aukes (Kevin Edgar), Danton (Zoey) Burkett, Connor Burkett and Cameron Burkett; two great-grandchildren: Ellie Kaye and Payton Brown; and he was excitedly awaiting a third great-grandchild: Eric Dean Edgar; two sisters: Cathy (Mike) Groen and Karen Shelton; one brother-in-law: Robert (Marcia) Renken: two sisters-in-law: Rosalita (Ronald) Brass and Rosemary (Douglas) Neymeyer as well as several nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by: his parents, his wife: Roberta Aukes, two brothers: Roger Aukes and Clarence Aukes, one sister: Linda Bachman, three nieces: Denise Aukes, Leisha Aukes and Jodi Bachman, one nephew: Bobby Bachman, and one brother-in-law: Gene Shelton.