CRESTON, Iowa — Larry Owens, 72, of Creston, passed away surrounded by his family at Greater Regional Hospice House on Thursday April 5, 2018. Celebration of Life Services will be Tuesday, April 10, 2018 at 10 a.m. at Pearson Family Funeral Service and Cremation Center, 809 W Montgomery, Creston. Rev. Mary O’Riley will officiate. Open visitation was today. Interment will be at the Iowa Veterans Cemetery in Adel, Iowa with Military Honors provided by the Iowa National Guard & VFW Post No. 1797 of Creston. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Theodore J. Martens V.F.W. Post No. 1797, CancerSupportMinistry.org at Crest Baptist Church or Greater Regional Hospice House. Online condolences may be left at www.pearsonfuneralhomes.com
Larry was born March 27, 1946, in Trenton, Neb., to Francis and Della Owens. He was the fifth child in a family of seven. Their family moved with the Burlington Northern Railroad, as his father was a road master, maintaining track. Larry graduated from McCook High School in McCook, Neb., in 1964. He attended McCook Junior College until he enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1966. Larry served in Germany and then also had a tour in Vietnam from June of 1967 to June of 1968. He served in the United States Army Republic of Vietnam (USARV), which was a corps-level support command center in Long Binh and participated in staving off the Tet Offensive. When he was discharged from the U.S. Army in 1969, he went to work for the Colorado and Southern Railroad in the engineering department in Denver, Colo.
He met and then married Janis Anderson in Denver on Nov. 27, 1970. Larry went to night school and obtained his electronics technician certification, while working in the railroad engineering office. They continued the railroad tradition of moving and moved 11 times in 14 years which included Superior, Wis.; McCook; Crawford, Neb.; Alliance, Neb.; Fort Worth, Texas; Springfield, Mo., (twice); Memphis, Tenn.; and then landed in Creston in 1989. Larry worked for the signal division, installing and then maintaining signals for traffic control. He then changed to operations and served as trainmaster in Creston until his retirement in 2001.
Larry is survived by his wife, Janis of 47 years; sons, Ethan (wife, Dana, children, Evelyn and Jeanie) Owens of Waukee, Iowa, and Eric (wife, Kylie, children, Katelyn and Thomas) Owens of Leawood, Kan.; daughter, Leanne (husband, Russ, children, Addie, Eva, and Graham) Smith of Norwalk, Iowa; brothers, Doug (wife, Lana) Owens of Austin, Minn., and Don (wife, Roxann) Owens of Indianola, Neb.; sister, Karen (husband, Ben) Mortimore of Scottsbluff, Neb.; sister-in-law, Joanne Owens of Bullhead City, Ariz.; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Marlys (Anderson) Steve Kerton of Monument, Colo.; along with many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Larry loved watching his children play sports and logged lots of miles and bleacher time between baseball, softball, basketball, high school and college football and golf.
After Larry retired he stayed busy with woodworking, yard work, gardening, golfing and traveling. He loved watching college football, college basketball, professional golf and listening to old time country music.
He enjoyed woodworking and made lots of things for the grandkids, including wooden animals for clocks, banks, stepstools, bookends, and large benches with horse head and legs. He was a family man, but also loved to socialize with friends and family.
Larry was a longtime member of Crestmoor Golf Club, Elks Club and VFW.
Preceding him in death were his parents; two brothers: Dale and Verl Owens; sister, Neva (Owens) Townsley and brother-in-law, Ray Townsley.
Pearson Family Funeral Service is in charge of arrangements.