Joseph Spalla

Friday, December 22, 2023 2:34 pm

Joseph Spalla, age 79, of Spillville, died on Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2023, at Accura Healthcare in Cresco.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 15, 2024,at the St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church in Spillville. Burial will be in the church cemetery, with Father Henry Huber presiding. Visitation will be from 9:30 a.m. until the time of the service at the church Monday morning. Helms Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

In lieu of flowers please consider donations to Accura Healthcare, Howard County Hospice, Winneshiek County Soil & Water Conservation, and St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church.

Joe was born on May 22, 1944, to Joseph and Lydia (Novak) Spalla in Decorah, Iowa. He grew up on a farm near Ridgeway. He attended St. Wenceslaus School and bordered there. He graduated from Rudolphinum High School in Protivin in 1963. Following graduation, he continued working on the family farm, as a dedicated farmer, dairyman, and hog producer.

He loved hunting, fishing, and was a steward of the land, practicing conservation, building ponds, waterways, terraces, and wind breaks. He experimented with unusual crops for the area, such as buckwheat, sorghum, and sunflowers. Joe designed and built his own header for harvesting sunflowers. His accomplishments were recognized on the front page of the Des Moines Register.

Church was in the forefront of his life. He was a lifelong member of St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church where he was a member of the choir and the Catholic Workmen. He was very proud of the playground his committee built for the school and the restoration of the convent through the St. Wenceslaus Heritage Society.

Thank you to the Alan Hauber family, John Spalla, and Father Bob Gross for their numerous acts of kindness towards Joe. The family would also like to thank Accura Healthcare and Howard County Hospice for their compassionate care.

Joe is survived by his siblings: Gary (Linda) Spalla, Mason City, IA; Tom (Nan) Spalla, Dubuque, IA; Julie Spalla; Karen (Tracy) Gustafson, Blue Earth, MN. Nieces: Jennifer (Todd) Alexander, Sarah Spalla, and Carolyn (Chad) Miller. Nephews: Mike (DeAnne) Spalla and Colby Gustafson.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph and Lydia (Novak) Spalla. Brother: Wayne Spalla.

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