Vergil D. Eness, 82, 8 Fairway Dr., Clear Lake, died Sunday, April 29, 2012 at the Muse-Norris Hospice Inpatient Unit, Mason City, Iowa. A memorial service will be held Monday, May 7, at Zion Lutheran Church, Clear Lake, with the Rev. Dean Hess officiating. According to his wishes, his body has been cremated. Memorials may be given to Zion Lutheran Church, Clear Lake Central Gardens, Clear Lake Arts Center, Friends of Clear Lake Library or a charity of your choice.
Vergil was born on Oct. 14, 1929, in Hancock County, Iowa, to Thomas O. and Bertha M. (Chentland) Eness, the fifth of six children. He was confirmed at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Garner in 1944. Vergil graduated from Garner High School. In his youth he enjoyed roller skating and water skiing. He taught Sunday School and Bible classes for about 15 years and served as assistant and as Sunday School Superintendent for a year each.
The Boy Scout program was very important to him. He attended Camp Roosevelt, Ventura, four times and also went on a 10-day canoe trip to an explorer scout camp near Ely, Minn. He served as a den chief for a cub scout patrol for a several years. When working for Troop 19, Garner, as an assistant scout master for five years he led the troop on their week at Camp Roosevelt twice and also on a number of overnight campouts around north Iowa.
Vergil married Joan K. Valentine on June 21, 1969 at the First Presbyterian Church, Mason City, and moved to Clear Lake. His life work was in the printing trade. He spent over 18 years as a letterpress printer and linotype operator at the weekly Garner Leader newspaper and completed his working years in the litho-prepress and color separation department of Kayenay Graphics, Mason City.
As a member of the Clear Lake Noon Lions, Vergil enjoyed helping at the Annual Chicken Bar-B-Que and other service projects. He received the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award in 2011 for dedicated humanitarian services from the Lions Club International Foundation. He was also a member North Iowa Nature Club, Clear Lake Arts Center, Friends of the Library, Central Garden, Sons of Norway and Trees Forever.
Vergil and Joan took many trips, which included visiting with relatives in England, Norway and France and bank tours. He loved bird watching and genealogy. He also enjoyed playing cards, visiting his relatives in different parts of the country, cross country skiing and dancing at the Surf Ballroom. He was a member of Zion Lutheran Church where he participated in Elderberries, and was active in choir and Bible study classes.
Vergil is survived by his wife, Joan Eness; sister, Bernice Eness, Garner, Iowa; brother, Arlyn Eness and his wife, Carolyn, Iowa Falls, Iowa; sister-in-law, Karen Eness, Park Ridge, Ill.; nieces and nephews, Debra (Ross) Jendro, Minneapolis, Minn., Sarah (Keith) Gunderson, Iowa City, Iowa, Brian (Rebecca) Eness, Waverly, Iowa, and Jane (Brad) Snodgrass, Colo, Iowa, and many other nieces, nephews and cousins.
Vergil was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Judith McKinney; and two brothers, John and Orville Eness.
Ward-Van Slyke Colonial Chapel, was in charge of arrangements.