Cover photo for Merlyn Irlbeck's Obituary
Merlyn Irlbeck Profile Photo
1936 Merlyn 2023

Merlyn Irlbeck

February 26, 1936 — September 21, 2023



   Merlyn Engelbert Irlbeck, son of Anselm Theodore and Wilhelmina “Minnie” (Steffes) Irlbeck, was born February 26, 1936, one mile east and a ¼ mile north of Manning on the family farm. He was baptized the next day. Merlyn grew up on the family farm and attended Struve School House through the eighth grade.

   Merlyn first worked for Weed Hacker in Templeton in 1955 until he was inducted into the U.S. Army in January of 1956. He trained at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri and Fort Hood, Texas, before being stationed at Johnson Air Force Base, in Tokyo, Japan, and Oppama Naval Base in Yokohama, Japan. Merlyn served as an Anti-aircraft Artillery Gun Crewman and Truck Driver. Merlyn attained the rank of Private First Class and received the Good Conduct Medal before being discharged on October 20, 1957. He then went to work for Kuker Oil and Peter’s Oil Company.

   On November 7, 1959, Merlyn was united in marriage with Beverly F.  Dalgety at Sacred Heart Church in Manning. Three children were born to this couple. In 1964, he purchased the service station, Irlbeck Oil. They lived in south Manning until 1974 when they moved to the Irlbeck family farm south of Manning. In 1982, Merlyn went to work with Agri Industries, then Ag Processing, until retiring in 1991. During retirement he enjoyed driving school bus for IKM-Manning.

   Merlyn was very active in the Manning community. He was a member of Sacred Heart Church where he served as Eucharistic Minister, Usher, on the Parish Council and catechism teacher. For 55 years, Merlyn served with the Manning Fire Department, being Fire Chief for 7 years. He also was on the ambulance crew for a number of years. He held memberships with the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, where he served on the Honor Guard. He was once Jaycee of the year, President of the Manning Chamber of Commerce and was crowned King at the 2006 Manning Quasquicentennial. Merlyn’s passion centered around his farm. He really enjoyed collecting antiques, signs, license plates, and toy tractors and showing them off in his Forgotten Corner Museum. He loved tinkering on all his tractors and going on tractor drives with the Old Iron Club. For many years, Merlyn had the best Christmas lights display in the area.

   On Thursday, September 21, 2023, Merlyn passed away at Accura Healthcare of Manning.  He was 87 years, 6 months and 26 days of age.

   Merlyn is survived by his wife Beverly Irlbeck of Manning; three children: Brian (Theresa) Irlbeck of Manning; Brett Irlbeck (Rhonda Szabo) of Granger; and Brenda (Terry) Sterk of Manning; 9 grandchildren: Jamie (Jeff) Blum; Bryce Irlbeck; Melissa (Travis) Riesberg; Michelle (Alex) Johnston; MaKayla Irlbeck (Lucas); Jeremia (Elaine) Macumber; TJ (Megan) Sterk; Tim (Alys) Sterk and Tracey (Jeremy) Bahl; 16 great-grandchildren: Annabelle, Evelyn, Josephine, Tucker, Justin, Blake, Landyn, Kyler, Theo, Lane, Ashton, Adrian, Eliana, Claire, Emmett and Logan; sisters Elaine Dammann of Minnesota and Joyce Nelson of Arizona; a brother-in-law Ken Loats of Tennessee; three sisters-in-law Diane Genzen and Kay (Duane) Otto, all of Manning, and Carol Irlbeck of Omaha, Nebraska; his good friend Ralph Dobler and his dog Bugsy. 

   He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers Ron (Catherine) Irlbeck and Floyd Irlbeck; sister Patricia Loats; Bev’s parents David and Selma (Vetter) Dalgety; and a brother-in-law Daryl Genzen.

Mass of Christian Burial on Saturday, September 30, 2023 at 10:30 AM at Sacred Heart Church, Manning, Iowa with Rev. Michael Cronin, Celebrant.

Mass Servers ~ Bill Muhlbauer & Katie Kerkhoff.

Lector ~ Cathy Pfannkuch.

Gift Bearers ~ Jamie Blum, Jeremia Macumber & Melissa Riesberg.

Eucharistic Minister ~ Wes Dammann.

Music “Prayer of St. Francis”, “Hosea”, “How Great Thou Art”, "Mother Dear, O Pray For Me”“God Bless America” By Sacred Heart Choir and Anne Muhlbauer, Organist.

Casket Bearers ~ Manning Fire Department.

Honorary Bearers ~ Merlyn’s Grandchildren.

Burial Sacred Heart Cemetery, Manning, Iowa.

Military Honors By U.S. Army Honor Guard, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3517 and American Legion Post 22.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Merlyn Irlbeck, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, September 29, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Sacred Heart Church - Manning

203 Sue St, Manning, IA 51455

A rosary will be held at 7:00 p.m.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Saturday, September 30, 2023

10:30 - 11:30 am (Central time)

Sacred Heart Church - Manning

203 Sue St, Manning, IA 51455

Interment will follow at Sacred Heart Cemetery in Manning.

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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