Wilbur Bert Hugen, son of Peter Hugen and Jennie Vander Wilt, was born Feb. 25, 1920, on his grandparents’ farm east of Prairie City. On June 11, 1941, Wilbur was united in marriage with Berneice Lorraine Niemantsverdriet on her family farm in rural Otley.
Wilbur attended Warren Grove School in rural Jasper County, Monroe High School, Capital City Commercial College and Drake University.
Wilbur retired from Maytag after 33+ years, having also been employed as a farmer, Jasper County 4-H Extension youth assistant, at Jasper County Assessor’s office and as owner and operator of the Hugen Accounting Service.
Wilbur enjoyed serving his community in many ways. He served on Capital Prairie and Newton Christian School Boards; taught Sunday school at Newton Christian Reformed Church and Newton Community Reformed Church; and was an elder in the Newton Community Reformed Church. He served those with special needs at Progress Industries and volunteered at First Step helping individuals with their financial planning. He was a Kiwanis International member and 60+ year member of Farm Bureau. He founded Lake View Heights Association and, with his wife of 67 years, enjoyed their lake home and neighbors at Rock Creek for 50 years.
Wilbur and Bea were charter residents of Park Centre Health Care Center in Newton and were actively involved in expanding the offerings Park Centre has for its residents. He enjoyed playing pool and checkers and was always looking for ways to help people.
Wilbur died on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, at Park Centre. He was 93 years old. Wilbur was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Berneice, his sister Viola Van Der Weele, his brothers-in-law, John Vande Noord and Virgil Klein, and his nephew, Bob Kula.
Those left to honor Wilbur’s memory include his son and daughter-in-law, Wayne and Ruth Hugen of Des Moines; his grandsons, Scott and Robin Hugen of Rochester Hills, MI, Matthew and Jill Hugen of Ankeny, and Todd and Peggy Hugen of Carlisle; his six great-grandchildren, Greta, Murphy, Alissa, Rebecca, Timothy and Abigail; his brother-in-law, Steve Van Der Weele of Grand Rapids, MI, and his sisters-in-law Viola Vande Noord and Leola Klein of Pella; along with nieces and nephews.
Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Nov. 15, at The Way (Newton Community Reformed Church). Visitation will be Thursday, Nov. 14, after 2 p.m. with family present from 6 to 8 p.m. at Pence-Reese Funeral Home in Newton.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Newton Church of the Way, Park Centre Good Samaritan Fund or Wesley Life Hospice.