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Henry R. Bader
Henry R. Bader, Jr., 92, of Le Mars, Iowa passed away on Tuesday, May 31, 2022, at UnityPoint Health in Sioux City, Iowa. Funeral services will be at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 11, 2022, at Grace Lutheran Church in Le Mars. Rev. Timothy Geitz will officiate. Military Honors will be provided by Wasmer Post 241 of the American Legion following the funeral. Visitation will begin at 2 p.m. on Friday, June 10, 2022, at the Mauer-Johnson Funeral Home in Le Mars with the family present from 5-7 p.m. There will be one hour of visitation at the church on Saturday before the service. An additional funeral service will take place at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 18, 2022, at Zion Lutheran Church in Worms, Nebraska. Visitation will be one hour before service time at the church in Worms. Rev. Craig K. Niemeier will officiate. Burial will follow at Zion Lutheran Cemetery in Worms.
Peters Funeral Home of St. Paul is assisting the family locally.
Henry R. Bader, Jr., was born at home on the family farm with his twin brother, Harry, on August 6, 1929, near St. Libory, Nebraska to Helen (Bruns) and Henry Bader. Henry was the oldest of 10 siblings. He was baptized and confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church Missouri Synod in Worms, Nebraska.
As a child, he helped on the farm, tilling the land with mules and horses throughout the Great Depression years, cut and sold ice from their pond, trapped skunks for bounties, and raised catfish in a stock pond to sell. Henry attended St. Libory District #26 and Zion Lutheran Schools in Worms with his brothers and sisters, getting to and from school by horse and cart. Henry and Harry were mechanically inclined tinkerers and built all sorts of contraptions, such as a homemade motorcycle and a prop-powered snowmobile. As a young man, Henry became a motorcycle stuntman on the Great Plains carnival circuit. He would jump over cars, crash through “walls of flame” and perform other stunts. Henry eventually found work stringing some of the first electric power lines across the Sand Hills.
Henry was drafted in 1952 to fight in the Korean War and attended Infantry Basic Training in Hawaii. Following basic training he was selected to attend Signal Officer Candidate School at Fort Monmouth, NJ, and attended Army flight training to become a spotter pilot with the L-19 Bird Dog aircraft. Upon graduation, Second Lieutenant Bader served nine months with the Third US Army near Wonju, Republic of Korea where he was an advisor to the First ROK Field Army. Henry was awarded the Bronze Star Medal, the fourth highest award for meritorious or heroic deeds performed during combat action. Eventually, after completing both active and reserve duty, Henry left the Service with the rank of Captain. He later became a lifelong and active member with the American Legion and the Korean War “Last Man’s Club.”
Attending the University of Nebraska on the GI Bill, Henry met his wife, Florence, who was a professor at the University. He earned his degree in soil sciences and Henry and Florence married in 1957. They made a home in Syracuse, Nebraska and their family grew with the birth of their sons John in 1958 and Harry in 1962, while Henry worked for the United States Soil Conservation Service.
The family moved to Le Mars, Iowa when Henry accepted a job as a right-of-way engineer with the Northwest Iowa Power Cooperative where he worked for the next 26 years until his retirement in 1991. Henry, with the help of his brother Ted, built the family a new home in rural Le Mars, not far from the community airport which served as the social hub for Henry. Henry Bader was a member of the Experimental Aircraft Association local Siouxland chapter and the Three Rivers Flying Club. He built and flew numerous airplanes and actively encouraged youth to become a part of the aviation community.
Henry Bader is the grandpa of Fitzpatrick and Kiernan (born 2011) and Maura (born 2013) Bader who are the children of his son Harry, and his wife, Patsy Bader. Henry delighted in giving his grandchildren gifts that their parents forbade, to ensure that adventure and excitement would be ever present in their young lives.
Henry is survived by his sons, John of Los Angeles, CA and Harry of Takoma Park, MD; his daughter-in-law, Patsy; his siblings, Joan (Vetter) of Rio Linda, CA, Betty (Rasch) of Denton, TX, Carol (Tom) Stephan of River Falls, WI and Bill (Andrea) of St. Libory, NE, sister-in-law, Marilyn Bader of St.Paul, NE and brother-in-law, Wilbur Tewes of Lincoln.
Henry is preceded in death by his wife, Florence (Morris) and his siblings Harry, Ted, David, June (Tewes), and Lois (Watt) and brothers-in-law, Eugene Vetter, Walter Rasch, and Everett Watt.
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