Curtis Raasch

Monday, January 10, 2011

Curtis Allan Raasch, age 67, of Odebolt, died Thursday, Jan. 6, 2011 at Horn Memorial Hospital in Ida Grove after a 4-year battle with cancer.

From day one, Curt was a farmer. It started with toy tractors on the floor and continued until his final days, as he provided input from his hospital bed.

Curt was born Nov. 1, 1943 during a terrible snow storm on the family farm north of Odebolt, the son of Raymond and Betty (Margaret Shirk) Raasch. His grandmother served as midwife. Curt attended school in Odebolt and graduated from Odebolt-Arthur Community School in 1961. He continued his education at Iowa State University, where he earned a degree in farm operations and agricultural education in 1966.

Curt met Carol Skelton at a college dance in 1964, and on July 24, 1966, they were married in Sioux Rapids. They stayed near Ames for five years, while Curt taught ag classes at United Community near Boone. In 1971, they moved back to Odebolt, where they farmed for the next 41 years. Curt and Carol raised four sons on the farm: Mark, Greg, Scott and Jeff.

Curt's life was devoted to his faith, his family and agriculture. He was a firm believer that it was the right way to live. Farming alongside his brother, nephew and sons enriched his life. He knew the value of taking time to build strong relationships with neighbors and friends. Grandchildren, livestock auctions, ice cream and long conversations were a few of his favorite things.

Curt helped advance international relationships with the Iowa Soybean Promotion Board, and later served as director and then chairman for the United Soybean Board. He was named Master Farmer in 1999 by Wallaces Farmer and was a lifetime member of Iowa State Education Association. He was a member and held leadership positions in several organizations, including Sac County Farm Bureau, Odebolt-Arthur School Board, Sac County Cattlemen, O-A Showmen 4-H Club and Sac County Republicans. With the Odebolt Rotary Club, he was instrumental in the shipment of soy meal to Africa.

He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Odebolt. He served as an elder, trustee and member of many committees during his lifetime with the church. He was a member of the choir and also sang with a group of friends who called themselves the "Straight Six."

Survivors include his wife, Carol, of 44 years; his children: Mark (Cyndi) Raasch, Greg (Melissa) Raasch, Scott (Stacy) Raasch all of Odebolt, and Jeff (Cassie Huisman) Raasch of Cedar Rapids; grandchildren: Isabella, Tyler, Gracie, Ways and Saige Raasch of Odebolt; brother: Bruce (Polly) Raasch of Odebolt; many nieces and nephews, and extended family members, including Juan and Mariela Alvarez and their daughter Hilda of Madison, Wisc.

Curt was preceded in death by his parents, Raymond and Betty Raasch; his father-in-law, Nathan Skelton; and niece, Michelle Raasch.

Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m., Monday, Jan. 10th at First Presbyterian Church in Odebolt with Rev. Mark Volkers officiating. Inurnment will be at 3 p.m., Monday, at the Odebolt Cemetery under the direction of the Farber & Otteman Funeral Home. Visitation is from 4-8 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 9th at the Farber & Otteman Funeral Home in Odebolt.