Junior Hanen, a longtime resident of Jefferson, died Nov. 26 at the age of 96 while living at The Views of Marion in Marion.
Junior, known to many as JF, started farming north of Jefferson in 1945. He had a dream to come home and start farming using money he had saved while serving in the Navy during World War II. He worked hard and accomplished his dream.
He was never far from farming, whether on the tractor, feeding cattle or managing multiple operations.
Junior Francis Hanen was born in Dawson on Feb. 17, 1924, to Arch and Hannah Hanen. He went to school in Cooper, where he met Eleanor Crews. They married in 1943 and raised two daughters together. They later divorced.
In these early years, Junior farmed multiple farms, raised large herds of Black Angus cattle and enjoyed buying cattle in Montana and Wyoming for himself and area farmers.
It wasn’t always work with no play as he took time for family road trips each summer, fishing trips in Canada, square dancing at Midwinter Club, card groups, family get-togethers, activities at the Elks Lodge and as a Shriner.
Junior and his wife, Barb, have enjoyed 37 years together farming, traveling, taking cruises and spending winters in Florida making many good friends. Junior met many of his friends while on the golf course. By March of every year, he was itching to get back to Iowa, to start the next farming season.
Family was important to Junior. He especially enjoyed the little kids.
He is survived by his wife, Barb; daughters Lana Sorenson, of Lake City; Lynne Pederson (Charlie) Nerstrand, of Minnesota; stepdaughter Jackie Heim (John), of Marion; grandchildren Kelly Bruggeman (Brett), Kasey Stern, Tedd Pederson (Molly), Jeff Heim (Erin), Jodee Reed (Blake); 14 great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents; seven siblings; son-in-law Jim Sorenson; stepdaughter Janie Davis.
Junior was a self-made man. He was smart, determined, driven, had a winning smile and made the right decisions to succeed. He leaves a lasting impression on the lives of the people he met and surrounded himself with — family, friends and neighbors.
As a husband, father, grandpa, uncle and friend, Junior was loved, and is greatly missed by those left behind who are grateful to have been a part of his life.
A celebration of life and graveside service will be held in Jefferson later in the coming year.
The Slininger-Schroeder Funeral Home is assisting the family.