Celebrating the life of Elwin Beers Woodward
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Elwin Beers Woodward was born November 23, 1932, on the family farm near Ticonic, Iowa. He was one of 9 children born to Russell D. and Blanche (Beers) Woodward. His education began in the Ticonic Country School, and transferred to Mapleton in the 6th grade, where he graduated with the class of 1951. On November 14, 1951, Beers joined the United States Air Force.
He was united in marriage to Darlene James at Bryan, Texas, on August 5, 1952. Beers served his country for 20 years in the Air Force as an aircraft mechanic, achieving the rank of Senior Master Sergeant. He received several medals during this time, including the Bronze Star for his service in the Vietnam War, from 1967-68. During his years in the service, he got his private pilot license ‘on the side’, and began what would become his future employment, and passion. He eventually earned every license for both flying, and mechanics. After his retirement from the service in 1971, he worked in various capacities for both the Mapleton airport, and Airways Services in Sioux City, including as a flight instructor. He concluded his aviation career as a corporate pilot for VT Industries of Holstein, for almost 15 years. A very special honor was earned in 2003, when he was presented the Charles Taylor “Master Mechanic” Award for 50 years in the aviation mechanics profession. During his flying career he acquired the nickname of “Woody” – and it stuck.
Throughout the 63 years of marriage shared with Darlene, they walked through every season of life hand in hand. Leaving behind an example of love and perseverance to their family and all who knew them and fostering a close relationship with their grandchildren. Together they enjoyed traveling, the outdoors, playing games, and he never failed to encourage Darlene’s love of moving and restoring homes and properties, sometimes for themselves, and also as a side business. In the past few years, they thoroughly enjoyed the old-time country music on TV from their easy chairs.
Woody loved to play baseball, and golf, and enjoyed working in the yard. As a young boy, he taught himself to play the guitar, and continued playing and singing country music for the rest of his life, to the great delight of his wife, family and anyone else fortunate enough to hear him. He truly enjoyed having fun with his kids and grandkids, making so many lasting memories.
Family members left to cherish those memories are Darlene, his wife of 63 years; five children, Terry (Linda) Woodward, of Belton MO; Teresa (Bob) Paulsrud, of Danbury IA; Russell (Deb) Woodward, of Castana IA; Diane (Frank) Welte, of Danbury IA; Kathleen (Mike) Meyer, of Estherville IA; 18 grandchildren; 30 great-grandchildren; three brothers, Joe (June) Woodward, of Sioux City IA, Jerry (Jean) Woodward, of Wichita KS, and Don (Sue) Woodward, of Ticonic IA, along with many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; an infant daughter; four brothers, Mel, Everett, Lyle and Roland, and one sister, Marilyn.
Rural Rodney, IA