Earle Hanselman, Sr.

Aug. 31, 1920 — July 30, 2017


Earle Aaron Hanselman Sr. was born Aug. 31, 1920, to (German) George and (Swiss) Anna Steussy Hanselman on the family farm southeast of Lu Verne. Growing up during the Great Depression he learned early the value of hard work and discipline. 

At age 14 with horse-drawn equipment he planted 20 acres of a ‘new’ type of seed: hybrid. He saved for college by selling 4-H calves and loading bales for $1 a day. At age 16 he graduated from Lu Verne Public School and entered ISC, Ames.

He fulfilled ROTC requirements and double majored in Economics and in Dairy Industry. He worked part-time at the college dairy lab making cheese and butter. In summers he worked at the Humboldt and Algona Creameries and Taylor Ice Cream Co.

Upon graduation Earle married his college sweetheart Alice Nelson on July 26, 1941 and began employment with Kraft Foods Co. His duties included daily production of 50,000 pounds of cheddar cheese bound for Russia during World War II under the U.S. Lend-Lease Act. Earle enlisted in the U.S. Navy, was trained at the Harvard School of Business and at Decoding School. He became the Chief Supply Officer of the U.S.S. Cybele, part of Admiral Halsey’s Fleet. In Tokyo Bay Earle observed the signing of the Peace Treaty.

After the war he returned to his family farm. Ambitious and self-confident, he realized with the help of his mother, his wife and his four children many accomplishments in grain and livestock production. Earle served as President of the Lu Verne School Board and of the Humboldt County Cattlemen. His favorite activities were fishing or working to improve the land. Upon retirement he built a home in Lu Verne, enjoyed gardening, planting trees, tiling, operating his backhoe and securing grants for the improvement of Lu Verne. He was blessed in his long life with a loving family, opportunities, skilled hands, a creative mind, and robust health.

In 2016, Earle moved to Prairie Creek Assisted Living, West Bend. He will be remembered for his quick wit and self- determined spirit. He passed away July 30, 2017 at the West Bend Health and Rehabilitation Center. 

He was a life-time member of Zion Lutheran Church, Lu Verne. 

He is survived by children George (Diane), Jane (Larry) Johannesen. David (Deb); four grandchildren; Megan, Ryan, Renee, Jesse; six great-grandchildren, eight nieces and nephews and special friend, Patricia Hardcopf.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 71 years, Alice (2012), parents,  (U.S. Navy Pilot) son Earle Jr. (1965), infant grandson Aaron Hanselman, brother LeRoy (Aleda), sister Elva (Harley) Christensen. 

Online condolences may be left at www.oakcrestfuneralservices.com. 


Kossuth County Advance

14 E. Nebraska St.

Algona, IA 50511  

Phone: (515) 295-3535

Fax: (515) 295-7217






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