Van Dean Parker was born in Alta, on Sept. 20, 1926. He was the son of Raymond and Hazel (Van Buskirk) Parker. Van grew up on a farm outside of Alta. He attended Alta Public Schools until 8th grade when he jumped out of the 2nd story window and never went back. At this point, he graduated from school.
Van served his country with the 185th Infantry from 1944 to 1946 in the Asiatic --Pacific Theater. On June 1, 1947, he married Ellen Virginia Kjolhede. This union was blessed with 5 children, Rick, Tom, Kathy, Susan and Kris. Van drove truck for 3 years, farmed the Parker Family Farm for 19 years and worked at Wilson's meats for 24 years. He retired in October of 1988. Van enjoyed working in his yard and garden. In his later years, he enjoyed spending time with his children, grandchildren and especially his dog, PeeWee. He will be missed for his sense of humor, dry wit and twinkle in his eye.
He is survived by his wife, Ellen, their children, Rick (Luann) Parker of Slayton Minn., Tom (Marilyn) Parker of Fairfield Bay AR, Kathy Wilbur of Storm Lake, Susan Gaes (Jeff Megrath) of Aurelia, and Kris (Tami) Parker of Persia. Van and Ellen have 14 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren. Van was preceded in death by his parents, Ray and Hazel, infant sister Marjorie, brother Robert, sister Doris, and his beloved dog and friend, PeeWee.