Cletus Elsbernd

Monday, October 3, 2016 5:20 pm

Cletus Elsbernd, 94, of Calmar, died peacefully Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2016, at the Ossian Senior Hospice, Ossian. Mass of Christian Burial was at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 17, at St. Aloysius Catholic Church in Calmar, with Rev. Robert Gross officiating. Lector was Mark Elsbernd. Organist was Jeanette Dietzenbach. The St. Aloysius Choir sang “Be Not Afraid,” “Prayer of St. Francis,” “On Eagle’s Wings” and “How Great Thou Art.” Kyle Elsbernd provided special music. Eucharistic ministers were Phyllis Elsbernd and Tracy Elsbernd. Offertory gift bearers were Robert and Rick Elsbernd. Casket bearers were all of Cletus’ grandchildren: Brandon Elsbernd, Justin Elsbernd, Kyle Elsbernd, Ryan Elsbernd, Matt Elsbernd, Theresa Otte, Brad Elsbernd, Alicia Elsbernd, Brian Cook, Chrissy Langreck, Katie Elsbernd, Kylie Elsbernd. Interment was at St. Aloysius Catholic Cemetery in Calmar. Arrangements were handled by Schluter – Balik Funeral Home, Calmar.

Cletus Joseph Elsbernd was born Nov. 4, 1921, the son of Frank and Ida (Heying) Elsbernd on the family farm near Calmar. Cletus attended St. Mary’s Catholic School in Festina and farmed with his family. Cletus met Georgina Humpal at a dance in Fort Atkinson and they were married Tuesday, Feb. 15, 1944, at St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church in Spillville, by Rev. J.P. Chihak. He and Georgina farmed south of Calmar until they bought their farm north of Calmar in 1950. Cletus farmed until he retired and moved into a home they built in 1988. Cletus enjoyed riding his bicycle around Calmar and on the Prairie Farmer Trail. He rode his bicycle to Cresco when he was in his early 90s. He enjoyed golfing in his younger days, having coffee at the Train Station, driving around looking at crops and driving his restored 1941 Chevrolet car.  Cletus enjoyed spending time with his family and the traditional Sunday night get-together at the house. He entered the Ossian Senior Hospice Jan. 6, 2016. Cletus was a member of St. Aloysius Catholic Church and the South Winneshiek Golf Course.

Cletus is survived by his four sons: Robert (Michele) Elsbernd, Calmar; William Elsbernd, Decorah; Ron (Phyllis) Elsbernd, Calmar; and Rick Elsbernd, Calmar; one daughter, Diane (Jerry) Langreck, Calmar; one daughter-in-law, Nancy Elsbernd Decorah; 12 grandchildren: Brandon (Denise) Elsbernd, Justin (Sue) Elsbernd, Kyle (Kristin) Elsbernd, Ryan (Cindy) Elsbernd, Matt (Melanie) Elsbernd, Theresa (Ryan) Otte, Brad (Kelly) Elsbernd, Alicia Elsbernd, Brian (Kelly) Cook, Chrissy (Chad Bakken) Langreck, Katie Elsbernd and Kylie Elsbernd; 20 great-grandchildren: Dylan, Hailey and Alexis Elsbernd, Olivia and Lauren Elsbernd, Lila and Jax  Elsbernd, Sam and Lars Elsbernd, Nora and Aiden Elsbernd, William Otte, Peyton and Lane Elsbernd, Jacob and Brody Cook, Mathias, Zecheriah,  Georgina and Kaia  Bakken.  

Cletus was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Ida (Heying) Elsbernd; his wife, Georgina, June 30, 2013; two sons, Daniel in 1956 and Kenneth in 1993; Georgina’s birth parents, Charles and Anna Humpal and her foster parents, John and Mary Korbel; three brothers: Myron Elsbernd, Linus (Ruth) Elsbernd and Romuald (Dorothy and Florine) Elsbernd; one sister, Virginia (Virgil) Humpal; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law: George (Marge) Humpal, Leonard Humpal, Louis Humpal, William (Tillie) Korbel, Joseph Korbel, Mary (Ed) Praska, Bill (Regina) Riha and Joe (Mae) Tuma.

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