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Obituary for Eugene "Gene" Sawin
Anthon, Iowa - Eugene K. Sawin, 87, of Anthon, Iowa passed away, Monday, February 24, 2014, at his residence near Anthon. The Funeral Mass will be Friday, February 28, 2014, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Anthon with Rev. Dan Greving officiating. Burial will be in Mt. St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery at Anthon. Visitation will be at the church Thursday, February 27 after 4:00 p.m. with the Vigil Wake at 7:00 p.m. followed by the Knights of Columbus Rosary. Visitation will resume Friday at the church one hour prior to the Mass. The family is receiving condolences on line at www.armstrongfuneral.com. Eugene K. Sawin was born November 27, 1926, on a farm near Oto, Iowa, the son of Kenneth and Agnes (King) Sawin. He graduated from Anthon High School in 1944, and was an active participant in football, basketball and baseball. He was crowned Anthon's Homecoming King in 1943 and was a member of his high school's State Baseball Team in 1942. In 1947, while Gene played on the Anthon Merchant town baseball team he pitched a no hit game in his first time attempt as pitcher. Gene was a lifelong grain and livestock farmer in Woodbury County, truly committed to the industry of agriculture. In January, 2011, he sold the remainder of the cow herd he had started 62 years earlier. He began farming with his father following high school and later with his son, Mark, for the remainder of his life. Gene served as Chairman of the Wolf Creek Watershed Project in the early 1960's. He was a lifetime member of St. Joseph's Catholic Church, serving as one of the Directors of the Church Council and as one of the original Eucharistic Ministers, and a sixty year member of the Knights of Columbus. On October 19, 1950, gene married Frances Chausse at St. Joseph's. Together they raised seven children on the family farm near Anthon. Gene was a kind humble man who led by the examples of hard work, faith in God and dedication to family. Gene is survived by his wife of 63 years, Frances; two sons, Mark (Jo Ann) of Sioux City, IA and David (Clair) of Tigard, OR; five daughters, Janet (Ken) Madsen of Overland Park, KS, Suzanne (Marcel) Van Zwol of Playa del Ray, CA, Nancy Kirkholm of Homer, NE, Lisa (Jake) Peters of Council Bluffs, IA, and Beth (Mike) Balzer of Grimes, IA; twelve grandchildren, Erin (Ryan) Christensen, Katie and Nick Sawin, Celine Van Zwol, Tyler and Tess Kirkholm, Nathan and Abby Peters, Max and Elyse Balzer, and Lexie and Eric Sawin; and a great-grandson, Gage Christensen. Gene was preceded in death by his parents; a sister and her husband, Mary Agnes and Richard Theobald; and a son-in-law, Dennis Kirkholm. Memorials may be directed to St. Joseph Catholic Church in Anthon.