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Memorial Service

West & Dunn Funeral Home, Newton Grove
Saturday December 20th, 2014

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Walter Ranschau

Inwood, IA: Walter Ranschau, 90, of Inwood, Iowa, died peacefully Sunday, February 19, 2017, at his home near Inwood. Funeral services will be Saturday, February 25, at 2:00 PM at Bethlehem Lutheran Church of Inwood with Rev. John Wolf officiating. Burial will be at Larchwood Cemetery in Larchwood, Iowa. Visitation will be held prior to the funeral service from 12:30-2:00 PM at the church. Memorials may be given to Bethlehem Lutheran Church Remodeling Fund.

Walter Claus Henry Ranschau was born June 15, 1926, in rural Rock Valley, Iowa, to Christian H. and E.C. Wanda (Wenck) Ranschau. He worked on his dad’s farm and attended country school until 8th grade. He was confirmed at Peace Lutheran Church. Walter was hired by Oscar and Emma Miller to help out on their farm for 3 years. Just after he turned 18, he joined the army and left on a train from Alton, Iowa. During World War II, he served from 1944–1946. He spent much of his time on the island of Leyte in the Philippines. Shortly after he returned home, Walter met his sister’s pen pal from Washington State. It was love at first sight. He married Mary Louise Wilder on January 2, 1949. Together, they farmed and raised 10 children. Walter found time to teach Sunday School, help with the youth in church, drove school bus for West Lyon Community School for many years, and got his GED from Northwest Iowa Community College. Mary and Walter were the 1983 “Parents of the Year” at Northwestern College.

In October of 2010, he had the privilege to go on the Honor Flight to Washington, DC. He was a long time member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Inwood. Walter loved spending time with his family, attending sporting events, eating out, playing UNO, going to church, singing hymns, dancing, sharing his thoughts and his hearty laugh. Walter’s favorite hobbies were tending his cow/calf herd and learning the all he could about farming.

Walter will be deeply missed by his family! He is survived by his children David (Becky) Ranschau of Ellsworth, Minnesota, Karen (Willard) Hulstein of Rock Valley, Iowa, Eileen (Stan) Forcier, of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Ruth (Kevin) Hoogeveen, Orange City, Iowa, Alice (Doug) Zonnefeld, of Sanborn, Iowa, Lois (Jerry) Vreeman, Sheldon, Iowa, Lori (Kevin) Kerns, Rolfe, Iowa, and Mark (Amy) Ranschau, Merrill, Iowa, multiple grandchildren and great-grandchildren, sister-in-law, Ella Campeau.

Walter was preceded in death by his wife, Mary; two sons: Norman and Paul Ranschau; four grandchildren: Anne, John, Mary, and Christopher Ranschau; son-in-law David Bartscher; two brothers: Cuno and Herbert Ranschau; and sister, Leny Nerland.


12:30 PM - 2:00 PM ,Saturday, February 25, 2017
Bethlehem Lutheran Church
302 North Oak Street Inwood, Iowa, Lyon 51240

Funeral Service

2:00 PM ,Saturday, February 25, 2017
Bethlehem Lutheran Church
302 North Oak Street Inwood, Iowa, Lyon 51240

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Walter Ranschau, please visit our flower store.


Dear Ruth, Kevin & families,
Please accept our deepest sympathies in the loss of your dad. May God bring you peace through the fond memories you shared.

Rod and Sandie Henery Feb 26 2017 12:00 AM

As the family members of Morris Van Peursem, we would like to extend our sincere sympathy in the earthly loss of your father, Walter Ranschau. He and our father were army buddies, and longtime friends. We remember with fond memories seeing your father at the funeral of our father, after we had unsuccessfully tried to inform Walter of the passing of our father. We left him a message on his phone. He returned from a trip the night before our fathers funeral, and the next day Walter was at Dad's funeral. Our hearts were warmed by his presence at the funeral to say his good-byes, and to again share some of his stories with us about his friendship with our father. What joy to know that they walk together again in the presence of our Lord. May God grant your family the peace of our Lord and Savior during the days that lie ahead! Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you!

Judy Van Peursem, Connie Aberson, Vern Van Peursem, and Shirley Boeve

Connie Aberson, Judy Van Peursem, Vern Van Peursem, and Shirley Boeve Feb 25 2017 12:00 AM

Our deepest sympathy. You had an amazing Dad who touched the lives of so many. I fondly remember his devotion and love for your Mom, seeing him faithfully spending time with her at Fellowship Village during her last season of life. He and our Dad were good friends and support for one another as they tenderly loved their beautiful wives through sickness and in health. May God provide comfort as you grieve and also great joy as you celebrate a life well lived. He will be missed!

Martha Moen Frohwein Feb 24 2017 12:00 AM

May your hearts soon be filled with wonderful memories of joyful times together as you celebrate a life well lived.
With Heartfelt Condolences

Peace,Prayers & Blessings,


Lisa Purdy Ciesielski Feb 22 2017 12:00 AM

Lois, Lori, and the rest of the Ranschau family
I am saddened to hear of the loss of your father, but I can see the rejoicing at his re with your mother Mary. His strong faith was a testimony to many. Prayers of peace to you and your families. May you treasure his memory.

Michele Kruse Myroniuk

Michele Myroniuk Feb 22 2017 12:00 AM

What a dad you had!! When I think of your dad, I think, Gloria, Gloria, Alleluia!!! Blessed be the memory of Walt Ranschau!

Kristi Kahl Edwards Feb 22 2017 12:00 AM