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Cornelius "Cornie" Edward Brands

March 29, 1934 ~ October 1, 2020 (age 86)

Obituary Image


ROCK VALLEY, IOWA – Cornelius “Cornie” Edward Brands, 86, of Rock Valley, died on Thursday, October 1, 2020 at Friendly Horizons in Sioux Center, Iowa.

   Funeral Service will be 10:00 a.m. Monday, October 5, 2020 at the First Reformed Church in Rock Valley with Rev. Dr. Verlyn Boone officiating. Burial, with military rites, will follow at the Valley View Cemetery. Public viewing, without the family present, will be from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Sunday at  Porter Funeral Home in Rock Valley. Please follow social distancing at all times.

   He was born in Rock Valley, Iowa, on March 29, 1934, to Gerrit and Bertha Brands. His siblings, Rena, Gerrit, Bertha, and Johanna all grew up in Rock Valley as well.  He attended school at Rock Valley Christian and graduated from Rock Valley High School.  After returning from serving his country, he finished a 2-year graduate from Sioux Empire College.

    He married Barbara Burggraaf on February 4, 1959, in Inwood, Iowa.  They raised their four children, Curtis, Brian, Mark, and Lorinda in the same house where he lived for most of their married life. He worked for Sioux County Highway Department, Rock Valley Cement Block and Tile, and later, after retirement, at A & I.

   His proudest accomplishment was the time he served in the Honor Guard, in Washington, D.C., while in the Army from 1956-1958. While in the Honor Guard, he participated in special ceremonial functions such as marching in President Eisenhower’s 2nd inauguration parade, serving for funerals at Arlington Cemetery, as well as welcoming dignitaries such as Queen Elizabeth.  He also known for posing with the M-14 automatic rifle, which appeared in The World Book Encyclopedia and Army Digest.

   When remembering Cornie, most people recall his inability to sit.  He was always busy whether it was bringing his sons fishing and hunting, and later, his grandchildren fishing.  He often helped at church bringing people to the hospital, serving as elder and deacon and finding ways to serve others.  He loved puttering around in his garden and traveling to the West Coast to visit family.  Most nights were filled with reading the paper, watching sports on TV, or sitting outside with Barb.  

   He is survived by his wife, Barbara of Rock Valley; children, Curtis (Doreen) Brands, Mitchell, SD, Brian (Cathy) Brands, Foster, OR, Mark Brands, Tea, SD, and Lorinda (Brad) Van Roekel, Boyden, IA;  grandchildren, Drake (Sylvia), Creyton, and Regan Brands, Kiana (Rachel) Brands, Kaitlyn (Jared) Reinitz, Jacob Brands, Maddee, Kate, Torree, and Bill Hawken, Hayley and Soren Brands, Davis, Drew, and Trey Van Roekel; and great-grandchild, Keaton Reinitz. 

   Cornie is also survived by his sisters, Bertha Statema and Johanna Westra; in-laws, Grace Brands, Geneva Burggraaf, Jim (Joyce) Burggraaf, Clazina Burggraaf, Jo Born, and Arlene (Bob) Vanden Top.

   He was preceded in death by his parents, Gerrit and Bertha Brands; a brother, Gerrit Brands Jr.; a sister, Rena Brands; parents-in-law, Peter and Ada Burggraaf; four brothers-in-law, Peter Burggraaf, Don Westra, Pete Statema, and William Burggraaf; three nephews, Dennis Burggraaf, Rodney Burggraaf, and Gary Brands; and four nieces, Dawn Burggraaf, Karen Burggraaf, Tonya Luesink, and Brenda Van Engen.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Cornelius "Cornie" Edward Brands, please visit our floral store.

 Service Program


October 4, 2020

2:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Porter Funeral Home
1704 15th Street
Rock Valley, IA 51247

Funeral Service
October 5, 2020

10:00 AM
First Reformed Church of Rock Valley
1501 16th Street
Rock Valley, Iowa 51247

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