Raymond F. Kuethe

            Raymond Frederick Kuethe, son of Carl and Emma (Niemann) Kuethe, was born August 30, 1913, in Waverly, Iowa. He was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Waverly.  Raymond graduated from the Waverly High School. 

            On November 28, 1935, he was united in marriage to Margaret Matthias at the St. Mary Parsonage in Waverly.  Raymond farmed all of his life and owned and operated Kuethe Turkey Farms.  He especially enjoyed combining corn and mowing the grass on the farm.  He was a past board member for REC, Fredericka Fire, Sumner Hospital and Iowa Turkey Federation.  Raymond currently served on the board for the American Savings Bank in Tripoli.  He enjoyed playing cards, fishing, watching sports on TV and traveling.

            Raymond Kuethe was a prominent, innovative Bremer County farmer.  Beginning his labors during the depression, he rented farms near Bremer, Shell Rock, and Buck Creek, before moving his family onto a 150-acre farm that he purchased in 1943 on Pinhook Road midway between Sumner, Fredericksburg and Tripoli.  He cleared its timber, dynamiting the stumps, and he tiled its sloughs, digging the trenches by hand.  Going into turkeys in the mid 1950s, he was among the first to embrace the idea of specialization.  He remained a turkey farmer until his retirement many years later.

            He took a hand in community leadership and modernization.  He led a group of local farmers who manually dug the post holes for the light lines to bring electricity to Pinhook Road, and was leader in securing telephone service for Leroy Township.  He served on numerous boards, including those of the REA, the American Savings Bank of Tripoli, the Sumner Community Hospital, and St. John’s Lutheran Church, and he helped establish the Frederika Fire Department.  When St. Bridget’s Mission at Pinhook was still active, he regularly ploughed the snow from the ditches to facilitate parking for Sunday Mass.  

            When his sons Ronald and Michael began to assume more and more responsibility for the turkey business, Ray and  his wife, Margaret, became world travelers, at first venturing out to visit son Allan and family in Colombia and, later, in Spain.  Frequent excursions to Europe, Asia, and the South Pacific followed.  Closer to home, he loved taking fishing trips with neighbors to northern Minnesota and southern Canada.   

             Raymond’s death occurred Saturday evening, March 31, 2012 at Community Memorial Hospital in Sumner, Iowa.  He was 98 years old.  He was a member of St. John Lutheran Church in Sumner where he was a past church board member.

            He is survived by his wife of 76 ½ years, Margaret Kuethe of Sumner, Iowa; six children, Ron (Terri) Kuethe of Sumner, Iowa, Allan (Lourdes) Kuethe of Lubbock, Texas, Kathy Baruth of Stewartville, Minnesota, Jan (Steve) Mullenix of Parker, Colorado, Mike (Lynn) Kuethe of Fredericksburg, Iowa and Deb (Charlie) Weber of Cedar Rapids, Iowa; 24 grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; and one sister, LaVera Schneider of Waverly, Iowa.

            Raymond was preceded in death by his parents; four sisters, Lenora Lynes, Luella Collins, Ruth Podlewski and Esther Arns; and a son-in-law, Carroll Baruth.

            Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, April 4, 2012, at St. John Lutheran Church in Sumner with Rev. William Runaas, Jr. and Rev. Jim Brokman officiating. Interment will follow at Mt. Olivet Cemetery (Pinhook), rural Sumner.  Friends may call from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, April 3, 2012, at Becker-Milnes Funeral Home in Sumner and for one hour preceding services at the church on Wednesday. Memorial donations may be made in his name to St. John Lutheran Church or Community Memorial Hospital both in Sumner.           


Loren and Pat Buls on April 6, 2012 at 11:22 PM said:

Again our love and prayers are with you all. Margaret you and Ray are such pillars of the community and the neighborhood--our lives were so enriched by knowing you and your family!!
It is so appropriate that you picked Pinhook for his final resting place-- he is truly home with you!

God Bless and love you all!
loren and pat
M. Johnson on April 6, 2012 at 1:05 PM said:

May the love of those around you help you through the days ahead. Hold tight to cherished memories, lean on friends and relatives for support. Most importantly, cling to God by praying and reading the bible daily.(Psalm 34:18; Psalm 55:22; John 5:28,29)
Barbara Primus Shaw on April 6, 2012 at 9:53 AM said:

Sorry to hear of Ray's passing..glad he will be buried at Pinhook so he can stay "in the neighborhood". So many of the old Pinhook people going to their forever homes lately. My sympathy to the whole family..Barb Primus Shaw
Laura Topor on April 5, 2012 at 9:36 AM said:

Jan, Steve and family,

I was sorry to hear of this news. Please know that you are in my thoughts.

Laura and Duane Smith on April 5, 2012 at 6:31 AM said:

Our thoughts and prayers are with you Deb and your entire family. I met your dad only a handful of times, but feel like I knew him through your stories and your love for him and your mom...a life we all hope to have. Much love to you and your family, Laura and Duane
Kevin, Christine and Emily Schwab on April 4, 2012 at 1:05 PM said:

We are very sorry for your loss. Imagine Ray and Carroll's reunion in heaven - gone fishin'! (from Carroll Baruth's cousin)
Linda Tietjens Locklin on April 4, 2012 at 8:26 AM said:

Condolences to Margaret and all of the Kuethes. What a long and wonderful life Ray had!
Mark & Cindy Irvin on April 3, 2012 at 9:56 PM said:

Thoughts and prayers to the whole Kuethe Clan
Denise Haupt on April 3, 2012 at 4:16 PM said:

My thoughts and prayers are with you all with the passing of Ray. He will surely be missed by all. I also recall him saying when asked how he was saying "I'm still percolating"
Darrell and Sharon Steege on April 3, 2012 at 3:27 PM said:

Our sympathy to Ray's family. Ray was a hard working farmer who rested when the work was done at the end of the day. Now his earthly work is done and he is at eternal rest in the Lord. God's peace be with you.
Department of History - Texas Tech University on April 3, 2012 at 6:48 AM said:

Our thoughts and prayers are with the Kuethe Family at this time. Please accept our sincerest sympathy for your loss.
Ronny and Wanda Heidemann on April 2, 2012 at 6:16 PM said:

Margaret and Family: Our prayers and deepest sympathy are with you at this difficult time. Ray will be greatly missed. I can still hear him say "I'm still percolating." May you find comfort in your memories abd the words of Jesus found in John 14:2-4 My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.You know the way to the place where I am going.”
Mike & Linda (Herrmann) McDaniel on April 2, 2012 at 4:27 PM said:

Margaret and to all of the Kuethe family: Lean on your family and friends for strength and always remember how much you are cared about. Also as you comprehend the loss of your husband, father and grandfather, let yourself cry knowing that each tear is a note of your love of Ray is rising to the heavens with him. Like a bird singing in the rain, let your memories of him survive in time of sorrow. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
John and Diane {Meyer} Dockendorf on April 2, 2012 at 12:29 PM said:

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Kuethe family at your loss.
Lorna - Goeke's office on April 2, 2012 at 10:35 AM said:

Ray will be missed. My sympathy to your family. Thinking about you.

Becker-Milnes Funeral Home

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