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Wayne Gitch

wayne gitch
Wayne Arthur Gitch, 75, of Fredericksburg, Iowa went to be with his Lord, after a courageous struggle with cancer on Saturday, May 7 at his home. Just like he dealt with all experiences in life, Wayne managed his illness with strength and grace, and wanted to spend as much time with loved ones as possible. Funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, May 11, 2022 at United Methodist Church in Fredericksburg, IA with Rev. Roberta Robbins presiding. Interment will follow at Rose Hill Cemetery in Fredericksburg, IA. Celebration of life will follow his interment at the Fredericksburg Community Center. Friends may greet the family from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 10, 2022 at Hugeback-Johnson Funeral Home & Crematory in Fredericksburg. Visitation continues an hour prior to the service on Wednesday at the church. The family has requested to wear Hawkeye attire to honor Wayne. Wayne was born on June 25, 1946, in New Hampton, Iowa to Arthur and Mabel Gitch. He was the youngest of the couple’s four children and was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Fredericksburg. Wayne grew up on a farm in Fredericksburg, where he began his education attending country school. His family briefly moved to Sumner before returning to Fredericksburg, and Wayne was a 1964 graduate of Fredericksburg High School. Wayne developed a tremendous work ethic early in life. As a young boy, he helped his parents with chores on the farm, and in middle school, Wayne worked for farmers and managed his own milk route. He later worked at a gas station and a meat locker. At the age of 19, Wayne began employment with John Deere in Waterloo, where he would work for 46 ½ years as an assembler of cabs and later a test-machine operator until his retirement in 2011. He took pride in being a Deere employee and would take any chance that came his way to work overtime. In 1965, Wayne joined UAW Local 838, and was a very proud member of the union. Wayne always honored his work commitments, and one story from the mid-1960s shows just what kind of employee he was. In his early days at John Deere, he was laid off for a short time and took a job at Oliver Tractor in Charles City. Almost immediately, he was recalled to Deere, but he honored his commitment to Oliver and worked at both plants for two weeks so he could give Oliver proper notice. At age 21, Wayne was briefly married to Janice Fenneman and they welcomed their first child, Kimberlee, before they later divorced. He found his true love - his "Missy" if you will - one night when he and a buddy stopped up at Holly's Bar and Grill in Lawler for a steak. The owners' daughter, Mary Kathleen Hollis, was working for her parents that night, and Wayne and Mary struck up a conversation. A day later, on Feb. 3, 1974, they went on a date to Prairie du Chien, and their love for each other blossomed quickly as the two exchanged vows on Dec. 14, 1974, at the Little Brown Church in Nashua. Their family grew to include four children - Mischa, Karolyn, Natasha and McClain - who had the best father, one who not only worked hard to provide for them but also taught them the important things in life. Wayne was devoted to his children. He was always calm, approachable, and offered the Gitch kids the best advice. He set a great example to them with his work ethic, but he also taught them to enjoy life and often flashed his great sense of humor with his children. Wayne's No. 1 priority, however, was always his family. As they grew up, Wayne taught them how to drive, both automatics and stick shifts because he wanted them to be comfortable behind the wheel of any vehicle. When he went "asparagus hunting," he walked the ditches and his children drove the car alongside him, giving them the chance to learn how to travel gravel! Wayne and Mary also owned and operated Holly’s Bar & Grill in Lawler for 10 years between 1982 and 1992. The couple did it all - cooking, tending bar, bussing tables, cleaning - at the establishment where they began their incredible love story. Wayne appreciated spending time with family and friends and was always ready for a good card game. He loved Euchre, Texas Hold’em and Cribbage. He enjoyed gardening, canning and making jelly. Wayne loved to fish and hunt, and he always had an eye for a classic car, never turning down a chance to go on a car cruise. You could always find Wayne cheering for the beloved Hawkeyes, Cubbies and Los Angeles Rams. He was a longtime member of the United Methodist Church and the Fredericksburg Sportsman Club. This remarkable man will be deeply missed by his family and friends but the memories he helped create and the advice he offered will last a lifetime. Wayne is survived by his loving wife of 47 years, Mary. Their four children: Mischa (Jon) Odell, of West Des Moines, Karolyn (Mick) Kane, of Fairbank and Kennedy and Adalynn; Natasha (Glenn) Smith of Nashville, TN and McClain (Kristen) Gitch of Madison, Wisconsin. Son-in-law, Daryl Hartson of Fredericksburg and granddaughter Morgan Price of Waterloo. Two Sisters; Mary Schroyer of West Union and Joan (Reid) Craft of Waterloo as well as nieces and nephews. Wayne was preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Betty Gitch; daughter, Kimberlee Hartson; brother-in-law, Richard Schroyer; parents-in-law, Keith and Charlotte Hollis; and Mary's aunt and uncle, Everett and Bernice Ambrose, who were so special to both Wayne and his wife.

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  1. Our deepest sympathy to the family🙏❤️. You are in our thoughts and prayers 🙏🙏

  2. Saddened to hear of the loss of Wayne. Sending prayers & our deepest sympathy. 🙏😥🙏

  3. Condolences to Mary and families! Wayne was a great guy and will be remembered and missed by many! 🙏

  4. Sincere condolences to Mary and the Gitch Family. Wayne gave it a good fight! May he rest in peace now. Thoughts and prayers to all

  5. So sorry to hear of Wayne’s passing. You and your whole family are in our prayers.

  6. Mary and families, my deepest condolences to each of you in the loss of your husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle. He and Kim will share stories and play cards! Jan and Lance

  7. Mary so sorry to hear of Wayne’s passing. We had a lot of good memories over the years. He will be greatly missed. You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. Tom and Marla Green

  8. Mary and families, Our deepest sympathies to all of you. You will all be in our thoughts and prayers.

  9. You are all in our thoughts and prayers at this difficult time. Dena and Zac Palmer and Dean Speicher

  10. Sorry to hear this Mary. He fought a hard battle. Will keep you and your family in our Prayers.

  11. Wayne Mary Gitch I am so sorry to hear this. So many wonderful memories with your family. Hugs to all of you.

  12. Oh no. So deeply sorry to hear this. My deepest condolences Mary, Misha, Carolyn, Natasha and Maclaine.

  13. My deepest condolences Mary and to all ur family. Sending prayers and hugs to all.

  14. I did not have the pleasure of meeting Wayne, but know what amazing daughters he raised. There is no doubt that he was a wonderful man. My heart aches as you grieve the passing of your father. Sending love and prayers to the family during this time.

  15. Thinking of you in your time of loss. May the lessons your father gave you last a lifetime, and may you always feel his spirit nearby.

  16. So very sorry for your loss, keeping your family in our hearts and thoughts. Jessica & Bob Doubek family & Mary Streeby

  17. Comfort and peace will come with all the special memories of Wayne 😇 Prayers to you all now and in hard days to come . Dawn”ie”

  18. Thoughts and prayers to all of you during this time of loss.

  19. Mischa and Jon Odell and Gitch family. We are thinking of you all during this time.

  20. So very sorry to hear this. Sounds like he was a great guy. Sorry I didn’t get to know him

  21. Wishing you peace to bring comfort, courage to face the days ahead and loving memories to forever hold in your hearts.

  22. Our Sympathies to Mary and family… Many high school memories of Wayne… Special menory – Wayne drove zig zag down the road – said he was dodging ants!!!

  23. Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss… Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.

  24. My childhood memories of Uncle Wayne include his big grin and eagerness to laugh and have fun. I always thought of him as the cool uncle. Prayers for all of you.

  25. I worked with Gitch (that’s what we called him at Deere) for many years. He could fix anything, and was always there to help with anything. Great guy. To the family you have my sympathy. Cam Kastli


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