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Harlan S. Place 1920-2013

April 16, 2013
Emmetsburg News

Funeral service for Harlan S. Place of Emmetsburg will be held Tuesday, April 16, at 2 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church in Emmetsburg. The Rev. Louis Q. Gallo will officiate.

Interment will be in Evergreen Cemetery, Emmetsburg. The Martin-Mattice Funeral Home in Emmetsburg is in charge of arrangements.

Harlan S. Place was born on April 11, 1920 in Emmetsburg to Leman F. Place and Margaret Louise (Roux) Place, and he died three days after his 93rd birthday. He attended Freedom #4 one-room country school and graduated from Emmetsburg High School in 1938. He helped on the family farm until enlisting in the Army Air Forces in 1942. After graduating from Air Forces Navigation School, he was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant and was assigned to a crew on a B-24 Bomber of the 450th Bomb Group (H). They flew 50 missions with the 15th Air Force across central and southern Europe. After he returned to the States, he and Dorothy Jean Sprout were married on July 19, 1944. He went on to complete Pilot Training and was awarded his silver pilot's wings as a 1st Lieutenant.

He and Dorothy returned to take over the family farm for 35 years where they raised their family of five.

As a life-long member of the First United Methodist Church, he served on several committees and was Chairman of the Administrative Council for six years. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge since 1942 where he served as Master, as well as Abu Bekr Shrine, Kossuth Shrine Club, and Eastern Star.

Other memberships were on the board of the Cylinder Co-op Elevator, Flying Farmers of Iowa, Palo Alto Pork Producers, and Palo Alto County Selective Service Board, and he served as Freedom Township Clerk.

As a member of the Palo Alto Gun Club since WWII, he was an avid trap shooter for 35 years, often breaking 25 straight even into his 90s.

After he and Dorothy retired from the farm to their home in Emmetsburg, he joined Rotary and served as President. They enjoyed attending several Air Forces Reunions all across the United States with men of their Air Force Group.

One of his joys was helping people, and he assisted Clarence Miller for several years during Clarence's declining years, and Edith Dickison after moving into town.

Harlan was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy; his parents; his brothers Gilbert, Clifford, Clarence, Robert, and Melvin; and his sister Margaret.

He is survived by his five children in five states: Martha (Gary) Hays, Phoenix, AZ; Virginia Place, Emmetsburg; Lois Place, San Antonio, TX; Dale (Marcia) Place, Lake City, MN; and JoAnn (Garry) Bird, St. Joseph, MO; eight grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; and sisters Charlotte (Richard) Frink, Carmichael, CA, and Louise (Eugene) Petty, Signal Mountain, TN.

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