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Larry's Story

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Larry Duane DeJong, age 68 of Knoxville, passed away Wednesday evening, June 7, 2017 at the Hospice Comfort House of Pella, Iowa.
Funeral services for Larry will be held 10:00 A.M., Thursday, June 15, 2017 at the Celebrate Community Church of Knoxville with Pastor Andrew Schmidt officiating. Burial with military honors for Larry will take place at Graceland Cemetery immediately following the service.
Visitation for Larry will be held from 4:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. Wednesday, June 14, 2017, also at the Celebrate Community Church. Larry's family will be present from 5:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M., on Wednesday evening.
Larry was born March 09, 1949 in Oskaloosa, Iowa the son of Nicholas and Donna (Gosselink) DeJong. Larry graduated from Sigourney High School, Class of 1967.
In 1968, Larry was drafted into the United States Army and served as a Sargent during the Vietnam War. After his service, Larry came back to Knoxville and worked for the phone company until 1973. He was united in marriage to Jolene Brooks in 1971. To this union four children were born; Paula, Mike, Doug, and Chad.
Larry was a Reserve Officer for the Sherriff's Department, worked on a dairy farm, then drove a semi for Ben Shinn Trucking, before becoming a school bus driver. He drove a school bus for 20 years when his health forced him to retire in 2016.
Larry remarried in 2003, to Mardell Rankin and was blessed with two stepsons, Scott and Eric Karr. They continued to raise their family in Knoxville. Larry enjoyed following their children's sporting events, spending time with his family, Sunday dinners at his home, being an active part of his community, playing 17 point Pitch, and fishing with friends and family.
Larry is survived by his loving wife, Mardell DeJong; one daughter, Paula Schippers (Eric) of Pella, Iowa; three sons, Mike DeJong of Knoxville, Doug DeJong (Angie) of Melcher, Chad DeJong (Jyl) of Knoxville; and two step sons, Scott Karr (Bobbi) and Eric Karr (Becca) both of Knoxville; 18 grandchildren; two sisters, Shirley DeJong of Knoxville and Nancy Kelderman of Tracy; and one brother, Terry DeJong of Knoxville, Iowa. Larry is preceded in death by his parents: Nick and Donna DeJong, and his grandparents.
A memorial in Larry's memory has been established to the Hospice Comfort House of Pella. Condolences may be sent to www.winfieldfh.com. Winfield Funeral Home of Knoxville is assisting Larry's family with arrangements.
Published on June 12, 2017
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