Joseph Mathias Spielbauer, 90, of Cedar Falls, formerly of Volga and Prairie Du Chien, WI, died Wednesday, November 22, 2017, at New Aldaya Lifescapes Assisted Living, Cedar Falls. He was born on January 24, 1927, in Guttenberg, to George and Frances (Rohner) Spielbauer. Joseph attend St. Mary’s Catholic School through 12th grade. He then enlisted in the US Navy and was stationed in the Pacific during WWII. He worked at Flexsteel in Dubuque for several years before becoming a dairy farmer in Volga.
He met Delores Wilker at a dance in Lakeside Ballroom in Guttenberg on Halloween night in 1946, and they were united in marriage on May 8, 1950, at Sacred Heart Church in Volga. Four children were born to this union.
Joseph was an active member of the American Legion, and held offices with the Farm Bureau and the Farm Service. He was awarded the Clayton County Outstanding Young Farmer Award and taught religious education for Sacred Heart Church in Volga.
Joe and Delores rented their first farm in North Buena Vista in 1955, and moved to the farm in rural Volga in 1956. They raised dairy cattle, pigs, chickens, horses, and their four children. They farmed for 35 years before moving to Prairie Du Chien, Wisconsin, where they lived for 22 years before moving to a retirement center in Cedar Falls.
Always ready to share experiences from WWII, Joe related his tales to local school children in his later years. His children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews always loved to hear about the old days growing up in Guttenberg as the second oldest of 14 children in the little house next to the railroad tracks and his adventures in the Pacific.
Survivors include his children, Steve (Kathy) Spielbauer, Lakeview, Michigan, Ann (Danny) Allen, Roswell, New Mexico, Lloyd (Becky) Spielbauer, Volga, Marie Lemka, Cedar Falls, Iowa; grandchildren, Paul (Emily) Spielbauer, Emily (Russel) Ankenbrant, Katie Spielbauer, Stephanie (Jake) Kaufman, Christina Spielbauer, Elizabeth Spielbauer, Robert Spielbauer, Cassandra Spielbauer, William Spielbauer, Ben Allen, Zack (Rachel) Lemka, and MacKenzie (Jake) Goodman; great grandchildren; Elowen and Ember Lemka and Theodore Spielbauer; several brothers and sisters and numerous nieces and nephews.
Joseph was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Delores on July 4, 2012; his son-in-law, Keith Lemka; his sisters; Kathleen Eilers, Rose Schultz and Helen Bolsinger, and his brothers; Larry and John Spielbauer.
Visitation will be Sunday, November 26, 2017 from 2-5 pm at Leonard-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Service and one hour before Mass at the church on Monday.
Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:00 am on Monday, November 27, 2017 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Volga, Iowa.
Burial will follow at Sacred Heart Catholic Church Cemetery, Volga, Iowa with Military Rites.
Leonard-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Service, Elkader, Iowa is helping the family with the arrangements.