Joseph Jenkins

Joseph M. Jenkins, 73, of Waukon died Monday, April 9, 2018 at his home in rural Waukon. Memorial services were held Friday, April 13 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Waukon with Pastor Bill Odermann officiating. Inurnment with military honors was at Oakland Cemetery, Waukon.

Joseph M. Jenkins was born August 30, 1944 in Waukon, the son of Herbert Milton and Verna Lucille (Monserud) Jenkins. He graduated from Waukon High School and at the age of 17, enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving from 1962-1965. Joe was assigned to the USS Hector and toured Japan, Korea and the Philippines. After his discharge, Joe returned home and attended NIACC in Mason City for business.

June 28, 1969, he married Mary Lynn Snitker at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Waukon. He worked for a finance company in Iowa City for a couple years. In 1971, Joe and Mary returned to Waukon at the request of his father to help with one of the farms; this then became their home for 47 years. They raised crops and dairy and beef cattle.

Joe loved raising calves, bottle feeding and naming each one; he’d ride out in his Ranger every day to check on them and in the evenings sometimes, he’d ride out to the woods with Mary and have a beer. They also always had a dog around and he loved them, too. Joe served on the IAS/Equity Co-op board and did soil testing for the Allamakee County ISU Extension office.

Since he liked being busy, for the past 23 years Joe also drove school bus. He would grow quite close with the kids each year; enough so that when they grew up, Joe would get invitations to their graduation parties and weddings. He had a tradition on the last day of school of supplying the kids with pop and holding belching contests. Many times one of the girls would win, much to Joe’s delight.

As a diehard Iowa Hawkeye fan, he followed basketball and wrestling and was a 20-year football season ticket holder; Joe also followed Waukon High School sports. He enjoyed nature and liked boating and fishing on the Mississippi as well as taking motorcycle trips with his brother, John. Though a quiet and soft-spoken man, he was a great father and a loyal, loving friend.

Joe is survived by Mary, his wife of almost 49 years, of Waukon; his two daughters: Holly (Brian) Ashton of Rochester, MN and Valerie (Aaron) Kreag of North Richland Hills, TX; and three brothers: Richard Jenkins of Ankeny, Robert (Sherry) Jenkins of Waukon and Larry (Sonja) Jenkins of Fort Collins, CO. He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, John, in 2004.

Honorary casketbearers were Alex and Jackson Freiberg, Dani Bahr, Ron Herman, Pat Ryan and Earl Schulte. Online condolences may be left at

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