Gene S. Best (1928 - 2009)

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Funeral services for Gene S. Best, 81, were conducted by Pastor Don Seeger and Pastor Steven Frock on Monday, Aug. 3, 2009 at 10:30 a. m. at First United Presbyterian Church in Atlantic. Interment was in the Arlington Heights Cemetery in Audubon at 1:30 p.m. Honorary casket bearers were Cynthia Jo Best, Alexander Best, Emmagene Best, Anna Collette Langel, and Austin Gene Rasmussen. Casket bearers were Jeremy Best, Jennifer White, McKenzee Fisher, Trent Fisher, Heidi Sickerson; Jodi Noble, Abby Rasmussen, Sara Best, Jodi Best, Wendi Langel, Lindsay Henke, Whitney Henke, Cody Huedepohl, Tyler Huedepohl, and Lindsey Huedepohl. Kessler Funeral Home in Exira was in charge of the arrangements.
Gene Sherman Best, the son of Russell and Lois Duling Best, was born March 24, 1928, at his parents' home near Manning, and died July 31, 2009, at Mercy Hospital Medical Center in Des Moines at the age of 81 years, 2 months, and 7 days.
Gene was baptized and confirmed at the Gray Methodist Church in Gray. He attended Gray Consolidated Schools, graduating with the High School Class of 1945. He then helped operate the family farm.
On June 22, 1949, he was united in marriage to Naomi Peterson at her parents' home north of Atlantic. They farmed north of Audubon, then farmed in the Atlantic area, then farmed in the Elk Horn/Marne area until 1966, when they purchased a farm west of Exira. He retired from farming in 1989 and moved to their home in Brayton in November. While farming Gene also was a salesman for Archer Oil, Tox-0-Wik livestock products, Henke Roller Mills, and most recently Best Trailer Sales. In January of 2008 he moved to the Atlantic Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.
Gene was a member of the First United Presbyterian Church in Atlantic and served as Deacon. He was active in the Elk Horn Saddle Club and recently the Audubon Saddle Club. He was a 4-H leader in Shelby County. He was President of the Elk Horn PTO. He was a member of the Brayton Community Club and had served as President. He enjoyed going to all his children's and grandchildren's activities. One of Gene's passions in life was working with horses and he thoroughly enjoyed going to horse shows and horse sales. He attended the Iowa State Fair for many years where he would sell his trailers, but really enjoyed socializing with people more than selling.
Preceding him in death were his daughter, Cynthia Kay Best Fisher; his daughter-in-law, Linda Rae Best; his parents; his sister, Ruth and husband Glenn Thompson; and an infant brother; his brothers-in-law: Irvin and wife Darlene Peterson and Wayne Peterson.
Survivors include his wife, Naomi Best of Atlantic; his children: David Gene Best and Steven Russell and Lynda Best, all of Brayton; Cheryl and Dave Huedepohl of Parnell; his son-in-law, John Fisher of Des Moines; his grandchildren: Jeremy Best of Pella; Jennifer and Craig White of Chicago, Ill.; McKenzee Fisher; Trent Fisher; Heidi and Darren Sickerson; Jodi and Steven Noble, all of Des Moines; Abby and Joe Rasmussen of Lincoln, Neb.; Sara Best and Jodi Best, both of Brayton; Wendi and Tyler Langel and Lindsay Henke, all of Omaha, Neb.; Whitney Henke of Des Moines; Cody Huedepohl; Tyler Huedepohl; Lindsey Huedepohl, all of Parnell; his great-grandchildren: Cynthia Jo Best; Alexander Best; Emmagene Best, Anna Langel, Austin Gene Rasmussen, Morgan Sickerson, Drew Sickerson, and Madison Sickerson; his sister-in-law, Donna Peterson of Alta; his daughter-in-law: Patricia Best of Pella; many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Published in AUDUBON COUNTY ADVOCATE JOURNAL from Aug. 3 to Aug. 4, 2009