Cover photo for Don   Esslinger's Obituary
Don   Esslinger Profile Photo
1939 Don 2016

Don Esslinger

June 12, 1939 — April 4, 2016

    Don J, son of John and Audrey (Loupee) Esslinger was born June 12, 1939 in Carroll, Iowa.  He grew up on a farm in the Bayard area and graduated from Bayard High School in 1957.  After graduation Don began to farm.

    On May 27, 1961 Don was united in marriage with Karen Clipperton in Panora.  From this union four children were born.   Don and Karen moved to Perry for a short time where he worked as a hired man on a farm.  They came back to Bayard and Don took over the family farm. 

    He was a hardworking man and a loving husband and father.  In 2000, Don retired from farming and they moved into town.  He was a member of the Church of Christ in Bayard and Pheasants Forever.  Don was a hog supervisor at the Guthrie County Fair and served many years with the Guthrie County Pork Producers. 

    Don enjoyed fishing and camping; he was a camp host at Springbrook State Park.  He was an avid Iowa Hawkeyes fan and was involved in showing cattle.  Of all these things, Don loved to watch every sport his grandchildren participated in. 

    In February of 2016 Don was diagnosed with cancer; he then moved into hospice care.  He died on April 4, 2016 at Hawkeye Care Center in Carroll at the age of 76 years, 9 months and 23 days.

    Preceding him in death are his parents John and Audrey Esslinger; granddaughter Brianna Esslinger; sister Ardelle Knopp; sister-in-law Jeri Fitzsimmons and brother-in-law Dick Andersen.

    Don is survived by his loving wife Karen Esslinger of 54 years; children Khristi (Brian) Woody of Monroe, Kathy (Mike) Keuning of Monroe, Doug Esslinger of Bayard and Dennis (fiancé, Nicole) Esslinger of Bayard; grandchildren Kaylee Woody of Monroe, Jacob Woody
of Monroe, Colton Keuning of Monroe, Chase Keuning of Monroe, Jacey Esslinger of Ames, Jorrie Esslinger of Coon Rapids, Bryce Esslinger of Coon Rapids, Oliva Esslinger of Coon Rapids, Bailey Esslinger of Bayard, Kaitlyn Esslinger of Bayard, Cooper Esslinger of Bayard, Peyton Betts of Bayard and Mason Betts of Bayard, step sister Ellen (Roger) Fischer of Thorp, WA; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Recorded Music

“Grandpa Told Me So”     Kenny Chesney

“Stroll All Over Heaven With You”    Alan Jackson

Alice Drake, Pianist for Instrumental Music


Casket Bearers

Gary Fell       Donnie Schwartz       Mark McCool

Mike Sorensen       Scott McClellan       Mike McClellan


Honorary Casket Bearers

Gary Kopaska     Elmer Kopaska 

Darrell Hayes     Sid Cox     Don Cavner


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