John A. Mulder, 75, of Sioux City, passed away Monday, Dec. 3, 2018, with his daughter Melissa by his side, at Holy Spirit Retirement Home.
Services will be 7 p.m. Friday at Sunnybrook Community Church. Burial will be in Valley View Cemetery, Rock Valley, Iowa. Visitation for family and friends will be 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at the church. Arrangements are under the direction of Meyer Brothers Morningside Chapel. Online condolences may be given at www.meyerbroschapels.com.
John was born on April 26, 1943, in Rock Valley, the son of John and Jessie (Stegenga) Mulder. He graduated from Rock Valley High School in 1960 and received his bachelor’s degree from Northwestern College in 1964. John started his teaching career at Hopkins Elementary School before being drafted into the U.S. Army in 1969. He was stationed in Honolulu, Hawaii at the Armed Forces Examining and Entrance Station. He was honorably discharged as a specialist four in 1971 and then resumed his teaching career at Longfellow Elementary, where he taught until retiring in 1998. John received his master's degree from the University of South Dakota in 1975. John also worked for Farm Bureau Insurance Company as a crop adjuster during his summers off from teaching.
He married Linda Vugteveen on Oct. 17, 1970 in Rock Valley. To this union their daughter, Melissa, was born.
John was an avid sports enthusiast and played baseball in his high school years. If he was not watching sports on TV, he was talking to someone about it, or at a game. He was a huge Minnesota Twins fan and treasured his special friendship with Rod Carew, who played for them during much of his baseball career. He attended many games throughout the years and he even created a special tradition with Melissa's family where he treated them to a Twins weekend with papa every summer for the last 14 years. Many special memories were created during these trips.
John enjoyed listening to music, especially oldies and Christian songs and loved singing to them.
He had a gift for striking up a conversation with anyone…no matter where he went and could always find mutual things in common to talk about with people he met. He touched lives wherever he went with his kind and gentle heart, content nature, sense of humor, strong faith, and most of all….positive attitude even through difficulties he faced daily the last year and a half of his life.
John's greatest love was spending time with his grandsons, Josh and Kaleb, especially watching them play sports. Anytime they had a game, you always knew papa would be there cheering them on, beaming with pride. He talked about them all the time with people he encountered and always shared how proud he was of them. His grandchildren, daughter, Melissa, and her husband, Ron, held a special place in his heart, and he was not only a role model to them, but to many others he came in contact with. He was a wonderful dad and papa and will be deeply missed by his family.
He was an active member of Sunnybrook Community Church and you could always count on him being in his same seat every Sunday. He loved to worship, listen to the sermons, and most of all visit with everyone while he was there. He never missed a Sunday unless he was sick, or the weather was bad. His faith was unwavering and he loved the Lord.
Survivors include his daughter, Melissa and her husband, Ron Nutt of Sioux City; two very special grandsons, Joshua Nutt and Kaleb Nutt of Sioux City; a sister-in-law, Jonna Mulder; one nieces; and three nephews.
John was preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, Bennie Mulder.
Memorials may be given in John's memory to Hospice of Siouxland or Holy Spirit Retirement Home.