Cletus Rooney

Cletus G. Rooney, 87, of Waukon died Thursday, July 30, 2015 at Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon. Funeral services were held Monday, August 3 at 11 a.m. at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Waukon, with Rev. Msgr. Cletus Hawes, Fr. Donald Hawes, Rev. Msgr. Ed Lechtenberg and Deacon Mike Ward officiating. Burial was at St. Mary’s Lycurgus Cemetery, Waukon.
Cletus Gregory Rooney was born May 3, 1928 on the Waukon area farm of his parents, James J. and Margaret A. (McGeough) Rooney. He attended Jefferson Township #1 rural school and Waukon High School. January 15, 1949 he married Jeanne Frances Welch at St. Mary’s Lycurgus Catholic Church.
Cletus began farming by working for neighbors. After his marriage he worked with his father-in-law on his Makee Township farm. In 1958 he purchased the farm and operated it on his own until he and Jeanne moved to Waukon in 1978. During his farming years, Cletus also worked for the State of Iowa Liquor Commission. He started at the Lansing store in 1963 and moved to the Waukon store from 1972 until 1990, the last couple of years being for Double D Liquor Store.
Everything he did Cletus did with enthusiasm. A man of strong faith, he was a devout member of St. Mary’s Lycurgus Catholic Church while living in the country and later St. Patrick Catholic Church and Knights of Columbus St. Matthew’s Council 1570 in Waukon. He was a long-time faithful member and area contact person for AA. For 25 years Cletus served as President of the Board of Directors for TASC and was personally involved in all aspects of its expansion. He also volunteered in various ways for the St. Patrick’s Day and Threshing Days events in Waukon, and he and Jeanne were regular attendees at many community benefit and social gatherings.
Cletus liked playing cards, stock car races, golf and music. He loved dancing and frequently sang his way through daily tasks. An expressively loving father and friend, Cletus was proud of his Irish heritage and was always armed with a new joke or story which he followed with his well-known, hearty laugh.
Survivors include his children: Sheryl (Jerry) Hammel of Denver, Tim (Rachael Lorenz) Rooney of Portland, OR, Tom (Susan) Rooney of Woodbury, MN, Diane (Paul Remington) Rooney of Swisher and K.C. Rooney of Temecula, CA; four grandchildren: Jennifer Miller, Sarah Bartling, Christopher Rooney and Megan Berger; five great-grandchildren: Lindsey and Nathan Miller, Tyler Rooney, and Mary and Luke Bartling; a brother-in-law, Donald Welch; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Jeanne, who died in 2007; a daughter, Mary Lyn Rooney, who died in 1978; three sisters: Marie Bruns, Catherine Grady and Theresa Rooney; and two brothers, Francis and George Rooney.
Casket bearers were Jerry Donahue, Mike Farley, Jim Gallagher, Terry Grady, Mick Rooney and Todd Meyer. Online condolences may be left at


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