IOWA CITY (AP) — Investigators on Wednesday asked for the public’s help in solving the killing of a retired grocery store owner who was found dead in his burglarized northeastern Iowa home five months ago.
The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation said investigators want to speak with anyone who may know something about the killing of Carl “Kenny” Gallmeyer, 70. Gallmeyer had owned Poppe’s Grocery and Lunch in Clarksville from 1973 to 2005, when he sold the business, married for a second time and moved about 20 miles away to Nashua.
Investigators with the Chickasaw County Sheriff’s Office found Gallmeyer’s body at his home in Nashua on Oct. 4 after receiving a request to check on his welfare. Friends had not heard from Gallmeyer for at least several days.
Officers learned that Gallmeyer’s residence had been burglarized, with several items stolen. The State Medical Examiner’s Office ruled that his death was a homicide, but investigators are withholding the cause of death to avoid releasing details that only the killer may know.
Investigators said anyone who may have unknowingly purchased or received stolen property belonging to Gallmeyer should contact them. The identities of anyone who tried to sell electronic items, tools or firearms in late September or early October should also be reported, police said.
Investigators said they were “solely concerned with the murder investigation” and promised that anyone who provides information would not be prosecuted for receiving or purchasing stolen property. Tips can be reported to the Chickasaw County Sheriff’s Office at (641) 394-3121, North Central Iowa Crime Stoppers at (800) 383-0088 and Cedar Valley Crime Stoppers at (855) 300-TIPS.
Gallmeyer had long been a fixture in Clarksville, a town of 1,400 about 100 miles northeast of Des Moines, where he graduated from high school. Gallmeyer served in the Army Security Agency in Ethiopia in the 1960s before returning to Clarksville and going to work at Poppe’s, which he eventually bought and operated from its location on Main Street for decades.
Gallmeyer also served as post commander of the local AMVETS post and often participated in parades and funerals. He also led a business group, the Clarksville Commercial Club. In his obituary, family members described Gallmeyer as a lover of birds, dogs and cats who was quick to laugh and had an interest in genealogy and local history.
Gallmeyer was survived by six siblings and three children he had with his first wife. His brother, Lee Gallmeyer of Hazleton, said Wednesday that family members were unaware of the latest development in the investigation and reluctant to comment.
“No one has told us anything,” he said.