Funeral services took place on Thursday, July 29, 2010 at the Zion Lutheran Church in rural Storm Lake. Burial was in the Zion Lutheran Church Cemetery. The Fratzke & Jensen Funeral Home in Storm Lake was in charge of the arrangements.
Kenneth E. Hartje was born Aug. 17, 1923, the adopted son of Ernest and Emma (Schramm) Hartje. He spent his entire life on the farm where he was raised. During that time, Kenneth even plowed virgin prairie grass. He was baptized on Nov. 25, 1923 and later confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church, remaining a faithful and life-long member. Growing up, Kenneth attended the Zion Parochial School and later graduated from Truesdale High School in 1941.
On Dec. 7, 1947, Kenneth was united in marriage to Barbara L. Kern at the Zion Lutheran Church in rural Storm Lake. Together they were blessed with three children: Suzanne, Patricia and Robert.
Kenneth loved being outside and farming, retiring in 1991. He was an active church member, serving as a Trustee and Trustee helper, Cemetery Board member, Finance Board member and on the committee for School Memorial. In addition, Kenneth was a Civil Air Patrol member and square dance caller. He loved to golf and make things in his workshop. He also loved his fruit orchard and sharing his bountiful harvest with his many friends and neighbors. More than anything, Kenneth loved and cherished his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. His children were his pride and joy and he loved spending time with them. Kenneth will be forever remembered as a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather.
Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Barbara of Storm Lake; his children: Suzanne (Gerald) Gast of Howard Lake, Minn.; Patricia (Arlen) Ciechanowski of Polk City; Robert (Ronda) Hartje of Storm Lake; grandchildren: Chad (Nicole) Hartje; Valarie (Ben) Lauzer; Brenda Gast; Erica (Darrin) Fischer; Justin (Megan) Mack; Alicia Johnson; great grandchildren: Ashlyn, Taya, and Malia Hartje; Andrew and Jacob Lauzer; Devon and Coleton Gast; Madison Fischer; extended family and friends.
Kenneth was preceded in death by his parents, Ernest and Emma Hartje; sister, Dorothy (George) McShane.