Richard George Nieman departed this mortal realm October 7, 2018 feeling he had done his bit by ignoring all sports except Nascar! He burst into the world on the Fourth of July in 1945, much to the relief of his mother, Vivian (Cook), and the joy of his dad, Ralph George Nieman, the first child having been a disappointing GIRL, Lynda Eastman (Don). His parents divorced when he was quite young and his father married Pat Hall, and they added Leanna Nieman Franco and Theodore Nieman to the mix! His mother remarried and created a yours, mine and ours family. His step-father, Ed Gerstenkorn, added a son, Robert Gerstenkorn, while his mother added her first two and two more. Larry Gerstenkorn and Jeannie Heins (Harry). His father's second marriage having suffered the same fate as the first, as did the third, Hazel. No progeny were produced in that marriage, but briefly, there was another brother, Chuck. He married one last time, finally getting it right, creating his own version of yours, mine and ours! He brought his first 4, and Norma Jean Rambo, brought 4 more, Steven Rambo (Tammy), Sandy Holms (Rich), Tom Rambo, and Debbie Young (Steve). They then proceeded to add 5 more Billie Jo Puhl (Jamie), Nancy Spooner (Jeff), Ralph Nieman Jr., Brenda Nieman (Gary), and Timothy Nieman (Chris). Rich married Carolyn Woore and had two sons, Richard Nieman (Carey) and Michael Nieman (Melanie) That marriage ended in divorce. Luckily, he found the love of this life, Marlys Kraft, while working at a Martin gas station. He helped her raise her three children, Shelda Sawyer (Tim), Robert Nieman and Peggy Lewis (Brad), and then their oldest grandchild, Natasha Nieman. His greatest joy was his family, which included his other grandchildren, Corey, Taylor, Megan, and Robert and his great-grandchildren, Nevaeh, Calieyah, and CaDanian. Rich realized as a young child that doing nothing and being poor wasn't as good as working and having some spending money! He started out with 2 paper routes, went on to farm work (sometimes volunteer, much to his chagrin), changing the marquee at the Paramount theater and numerous other jobs before finally settling in at the John Deere Maintenance Department where he spent the next 40 years. After retirement, so as not to get bored, he taught welding at Deere and at Hawkeye. He, also, enjoyed building race cars, racing on dirt tracks, watching Nascar, country music and acquiring everything new in computer electronics as soon as it was available. He and Marlys enjoyed the company of their best friends Merlin (Mouse) Schmidt and his wife Janice and after she passed, his wife, Shirley, and Dick and Lou McCalley. They did a lot of traveling on Union business but it always sounded like the business took second place to the fun! It's safe to say that, now that he's gone. He had regrets, but just a few, and felt his life had been full and satisfying. The loss of his wife, Marlys, in 2011 left a huge hole in his heart and he is surely enjoying her company once again. He was also preceded in death by his parents (all of them), his brother, Larry, and three sisters, Leanna, Billie Jo, and Brenda, and two brothers-in-law, Don and Harry. He will be loved and missed by all of these plus numerous nieces and nephews and the many daycare children whom he and Marlys helped raise. Services will be 10:30 a.m. Thursday, October 11 at Hagarty-Waychoff-Grarup Funeral Service on West Ridgeway, Waterloo, with burial in Washington Chapel Cemetery, Cedar Falls. Public visitation will be from 4-6 p.m. Wednesday, October 10 at the funeral home and for an hour before services. Memorials can be directed to Cedar Valley Hospice or Ovarian Cancer Research.
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