Dean Kerns, 77, of Reinbeck, Iowa, died Monday, May 30, 2011, at his daughter and son-in-law's home. Following cremation, Mass was held at 10:30 AM, Friday, June 3, 2011, at St. Gabriel Catholic Church in Reinbeck, with Father David Kucera officiating. Visitation was held Thursday, June 2, 2011, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM, at French Hand Funeral Home in Reinbeck. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to St. Gabriel's Catholic Church Memorial Garden 21275 U Ave. Reinbeck, IA 50669. To view the complete obituary or to send messages of condolence, please visit www.abelsfuneralhomes.com.
Dean Kerns was born on August 9, 1933, in Mason City, Iowa, the son of Loraine and Silva (Menuey) Kerns. Dean grew up and attended school in Fayette County. Dean enlisted in the Army serving with 82nd Airborne at Fort Bragg, N.C. from September 18, 1951 to September 17, 1954. On June 6, 1954, he was united in marriage to Cynthia Joan Barrier in Charlotte, N.C. In September of that same year, the couple moved to Oelwein, Iowa for a short time before they made their home in Cedar Falls. Dean worked for John Deere in Waterloo where he retired in 1985 after 30 years. In 1998, they moved to Reinbeck to make their home.
Dean was a member of Saint Gabriel Catholic Church, American Legion Action Post #242, Oak Leaf Country Club all of Reinbeck and The Catholic Order of Foresters. He was past member of Elks Club in Waterloo, past member and past president of the Waterloo Jaycees and past board member of John Deere Credit Union. He enjoyed the outdoors especially working his garden every summer. Dean's family was the center of his life.
Dean is survived by daughter, Cynthia Cain and her husband Mike of Selmer, Tenn.; daughter, Denise Schares and her husband Wayne of La Porte City, Iowa; son, Joseph Kerns and his wife Karen of Ames, Iowa; daughter, Susan Petersen and her husband Bart of Reinbeck, Iowa; son-in-law, Bryce Seegers of Denver, Iowa, thirteen grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; sister, Deloris (Chuck) Sernett of Bella Vista, Alaska; brother, John (Sherry) Kerns of Oelwein, Iowa; and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Cynthia "Jo" in 2008; his parents; one daughter Debra Seegers; sister, Ardith; three brothers, Grant, Lynn and Wayne.