Charles W. Rayburn

Charles W Rayburn, 95, of Clear Lake, passed away Thursday, March 7, 2019, at Oakwood Care Center, Clear Lake.

Funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, March 15, at Clear Lake United Methodist Church, 508 2nd Avenue North, Clear Lake, with the Rev. David Peterson officiating.  Burial will be held at a later date.  Military honors will be conducted by the Clear Lake VFW.

Visitation will be held from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday, March 14, at Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, 101 North 4th Street, Clear Lake.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Clear Lake United Methodist Church or One Vision of Clear Lake.

Charles was born Jan. 12, 1924, at Bloomfield, Iowa, the son of Doy and Eulala (Williamson) Rayburn.  He graduated from Bloomfield High School in 1942 and went to work at the Rock Island Arsenal until inducted into the Navy Seabees in 1944.  Charles served in the South Pacific during the Okinawa invasion and was honorably discharged in February 1946.

Charles was united in marriage to Ruth Jean Sullivan on Jan. 31, 1947, at the Christian Church parsonage, in Bloomfield. He was happily married to his loving wife for 66 years.

Charles started work in the lumber business under the GI Bill with Eclipse Lumber Company, in Bloomfield, and managed lumberyards in Prescott, Aurelia and Marcus, Iowa and Blue Earth, Minn.  He was a manager at Woodford Wheeler Lumber Company, in Clear Lake, from January 1965 until his retirement in 1989.

Charles was a member of Clear Lake United Methodist Church, a lifetime member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and a former Rotarian.  He enjoyed being with his family and was especially thankful for the many years family members gathered at home for Thanksgiving and Christmas.  In addition, Charles enjoyed traveling, reading, listening to good music and riding his bicycle.  Charles was known for his dry wit, patience and humble demeanor.  Gentle and reserved by nature, Charles could calm crying babies and misbehaving dogs.

Charles is survived by four children, Jack (Beth Christensen) Rayburn, Mankato, Minn., Gene (Judy) Rayburn, St. Paul, Minn., Russell Rayburn, Clear Lake, and Ann (Dennis) Wall, Des Moines; two grandchildren, Elizabeth (Caleb) Barron, and Brian Charles (Jillanne) Wall; two great-grandchildren, Staale Barron and Whittaker Wall.

Charles was preceded in death by his wife, Ruth Rayburn; parents, Doy and Eulala; stepmother, Florence; brother, James and his wife, Mary; stepbrother, Karl Knupp and his wife, Wanda.

Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, Clear Lake, was in charge of arrangements.

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