Edward J. Byrnes
Polk City - Edward Joseph Byrnes passed peacefully from this earth to be with our Lord on February 22, 2021.
Mass of Christian burial will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, February 26, 2021 at Assumption Catholic Church (1906 Sycamore St, Granger). A visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. with Rosary at 7:00 PM, on Thursday, February 25, 2021 also at the church.
Ed was born to John & Marguerite Byrnes in Des Moines, IA on July 9, 1931. He was the second of 12 children. He graduated from Dowling High School, Des Moines, IA in 1949. Ed served in Korea as a member of the Marine Corps for two years, 1951 and 1952.
Ed met Phyllis Eileen Yost at St. Gabriel's Monastery of Passionate Monks during Lent. They were united in marriage on September 10, 1955 at St. Peters Catholic Church, Des Moines, IA.
They started a home in Des Moines, moved to Urbandale in 1958, before eventually settling in Polk City in 1970. Together, they had 12 children.
Ed worked for Flynn Dairy, Borden's Dairy and finally AE Dairy until 1982. Ed and Phyllis began an upholstery business at their home where Ed worked until his death. His passion to make things new again was passed down to two sons who now own their own upholstery businesses.
Ed's first and foremost priority was love of family. He never knew a stranger. If you were lucky enough to meet him, you were his friend for life. He loved all people and commonly said that you love people for their differences, that's what makes them unique. Once you joined his family, you were always family. Ed was the most selfless person, always willing to help others in need. If you asked Ed how he was, his response was almost always "Fantastic" or "Awesome". He considered himself the richest man on earth because of the love people had for him. Together, Mom and Dad made room for countless people, family or not, in their home.
Among many of the things he enjoyed were playing golf, fishing, hockey and driving around Des Moines to visit with people. He spent many years playing golf and being a golf ranger at Jester Park Golf Course. He enjoyed many hours casting a line at Big Creek or Saylorville Lake fishing for crappie. Ed and Phyllis were season ticket holders at the Des Moines Buccaneers for over 20 years. Prior to that, he even played in a hockey rec league in the 1960's with his father John. He enjoyed acting at the Bittersweet Theatre outside of Granger, IA in the 1980's. Ed had a beautiful singing voice and sang in church for many years with his daughters.
He loved having coffee and breakfast at a local café with a group of friends along with a favorite restaurant in Grimes, IA that he visited several times a week. Both places considered him family as he did them.
Ed was loved by all and will be missed dearly. He is lovingly remembered by his children, James Edward Byrnes (Shelly), Patricia Marie Thomas (David), Peggy Suzanne McCombs (David), Joseph Patrick O'Byrnes (Kathleen), Daniel Thomas Byrnes (Julie), Edward Francis Byrnes (Juli), Anne Elizabeth Leopold (Johnny), Mary (Molly) Cecilia Byrnes, Richard Dennis Byrnes (Betsy) and Matthew John Byrnes (Jamie); daughter-in-law, Mary Beth Evans; 27 grandchildren; 33 great grandchildren; one great-great grandchild; siblings, Tom Byrnes (Jean), Mary Hilt, Helen Jacobson, Gertrude Stuempfig, Caroline Hurst, Francis Jahani, Angela Gomez (Lee), Paul Byrnes (Betty) and William Byrnes (Kathie); and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife of 63 years, Phyllis; his sons, Stephen Michael Byrnes and Dennis Michael Byrnes; his parents; and his brothers, Jack Byrnes and James Byrnes.
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