Joseph Henry Kellen, 80, of Alton, passed away Monday, May 14, 2018, at a Sioux City hospital.
Services will be 10:30 a.m. Friday at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Alton, with the Rev. Dan Greving officiating. Burial will be in St. Mary's Cemetery, with military rites conducted by the American Legion Floyd Post 200 of Alton. Visitation with the family will be 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, with a K of C rosary, K of C Fourth degree chalice presentation and vigil prayer service, all at 5 p.m., at the church. Arrangements are under the direction of Fisch Funeral Home & Monument in Remsen, Iowa. Condolences can be sent online to www.fischfh.com.
Joe was born on March 15, 1938, to Aloysius W. and Elizabeth C. (Stoll) Kellen, in Alton. He graduated from St. Mary's Academy and then attended the University of St. Thomas. Joe was enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, but his true passion was farming, which he enjoyed for more than 60 years.
On June 12, 1962, Joe was united in Catholic matrimony to Elizabeth Ann Neitzel. Together they raised nine spirited children on the family farm, where Joe was born and raised. In 2008, Joe and Liz moved into Alton, where he continued to be active in the community and his children's lives.
Joe was a lifelong member of St. Mary's Catholic Church, where he was the first lay lector and continued that role for 50 years. He was proud to be a Grand Knight for the Knights of Columbus, president of Spalding Catholic School Board and president of St. Mary's Parish Board. He was a member of the American Legion Post 200, Spalding School Bus Association, Annual Bishop's Dinner committee, and the Farmers Co-op Oil Board. Throughout the years, Joe also enjoyed bowling, attending his children's and grandchildren's activities, taking photographs, supporting Briar Cliff University, making stove top popcorn and good conversation.
Left to cherish Joe's memory are his wife of 55 years, Liz; nine children, Anne (Dean) Torgerson, Mary Hunt, Judy Kellen, Joni Kellen (Keith Lamfers), Neal (Tammy) Kellen, Karl (Missy) Kellen, Tony (Gina) Kellen, Cari Kellen, and Rick (Gwen) Kellen; 28 grandchildren; one great-grandchild; four brothers, Lou (Jean) Kellen, Red (Ann) Kellen, Jerry (Perry) Kellen, and Arnie (Peggy) Kellen; in-laws, Melvin Ruba, Sandy Kellen, Leonard Neitzel and Eva Neitzel; and many other family members and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his mother and father-in-law, Raymond and Catherine Neitzel; siblings, Dolores and Sylvester Hansen, Agnes Ruba, Lawrence and Doris Kellen, and Daniel Kellen; sister-in-law, Joan Neitzel; granddaughter, Gabrielle Kellen; and son-in-law, JD Hunt.
Pallbearers will be Justin Hunt, Zach Kellen, Jozef Lamfers, Lucas Hunt, Colton Gerloff and Lucas Nelson.
In lieu of flowers, please make memorials to Briar Cliff University or Alton St. Mary's Catholic Church.