John R. Donnelly (1920 - 2016)

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INDEPENDENCE – John R. Donnelly, 95 years old, of Independence, Iowa, died on Tuesday, May 31, 2016, at Lexington Estates in Independence.
He was born on November 17, 1920, in Westburg Township of Buchanan County, Iowa, the son of Andrew Bernard and Johanna (McGrath) Donnelly. He graduated from high school in Independence with the Class of 1938 and then graduated from the Independence Junior College in 1940. During World War II, Mr. Donnelly served with the Army Air Corps. He attained the rank of Sergeant and was awarded a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star. On May 9, 1949, he and the former Ruth Marie Gapinski were married at St. John's Catholic Church in Independence. She preceded him in death in 2012. Mr. Donnelly was an oil jobber with two service stations. He also worked as a car salesman and operated a soft water company.
He was a member of St. John's Catholic Church in Independence, the Bechter-Boies V.F.W. Post 2440, the Sheehan-Tidball American Legion Post 40, the Wapsipinicon Golf Course, and the Catholic Order of Foresters. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and dancing with his wife, Ruth, in his free time.
Mr. Donnelly is survived by one daughter, Kathy (Mark) Mossman of Vinton, Iowa; and four sons: Mike (Deb) Donnelly, Andy (Penny) Donnelly, and Richard Donnelly, all of Independence, and Tom (Jackie) Donnelly of Dysart. He is also survived by eight grandchildren: John (Shelley) Mossman, Ben (Katie) Donnelly, Jared (Kelsi) Donnelly, Brian Miller, Brian Hunter, Chris Donnelly, Brittney (Jared) Cunningham, and Katie Donnelly; 10 great grandchildren: Chloe Mossman, Sophie Mossman, Lily Mossman, Kale Wieland, Kayden Donnelly, Brecken Donnelly, Landon Donnelly, Brooks Donnelly, Easton Miller, and E.J. Miller; one brother, Leo (Therese) Donnelly of Independence; and one sister-in-law, Helen Donnelly, of Independence.
In addition to his wife, he was preceded in death by his parents; a grandson, Burns Mossman; and four brothers: Raymond Donnelly, Leonard Donnelly, James Donnelly, and Rabbit Donnelly.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, June 3, 2016, at St. John's Catholic Church in Independence. Rev. Donald Plamondon will be the Celebrant. Burial will be in the church cemetery. Friends may call for visitation from 4 until 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 2, at the White Funeral Home in Independence where a Military Service begins at 6:30 p.m. A Memorial Fund has been established. On line condolences may be left at
Funeral Home
White Funeral Home
400 First Street West
Independence, IA 50644
(319) 334-2595
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Published in Independence Bulletin-Journal from June 2 to June 8, 2016
bullet Bronze Star bullet Purple Heart bullet U.S. Army bullet World War II