Juniata, Nebraska, resident Conrad Frederick Grothen, 76, passed away Monday, Aug. 12, 2019 at Mary Lanning Healthcare in Hastings after a 2 ½-year battle with cancer.
Services will be 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 17, at First St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Hastings with Pastor Joel Remmers officiating. Burial will be in the Parkview Cemetery. Visitation will be 1-7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 16, at the Apfel Funeral Home in Hastings. Condolences may be sent to the family from www.apfelfuneralhome.com. Apfel Funeral Home in Hastings is in care of the family.
Memorials may be given to Immanuel Lutheran Church, First St. Paul's Lutheran Church or the Hastings Food Pantry, all in Hastings.
Conrad was born May 15, 1943, to George and Irma (Toepher) Grothen in Hastings. He grew up on a farm near Juniata that his father purchased in the 1930s. He attended Juniata Grade School and graduated from Hastings Senior High School in 1961. He received his bachelor's degree in education from Hastings College in 1965. He began his teaching career at Fairfield High School and then went on to teach at Grand Island Northwest High School. He was among the original faculty at Adams Central Junior-Senior High School when it opened in 1968. He taught social studies, history, speech and dramatics.
On Nov. 19, 1966, he married Joyce Marie Ripp of Fullerton at First St. Paul's Lutheran Church. They spent the next 53 years together raising their family and growing their family farm. Conrad had three loves: his family, the Lord and farming his land. Not only was farming his profession, it was also his lifetime passion. Nothing made him happier than driving from farm to farm during the growing season to see how tall the corn was each week, something he was unable to do in his last days. Throughout his life, he also served on various boards that served the church and community. He was past president of the American Corn Growers Association. He served as school board president of Wallace District #60 school. He was president of the church council at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Hastings. Most recently he was a board member for the Hastings Food Pantry.
He is survived by his loving wife, Joyce, and son Phillip (Kim) Grothen, both of Juniata; daughter Andrea (Scott) Bissen of Overland Park, Kansas; son Mark (Diana) Grothen of Alhambra, California; daughter Julia Grothen of Juniata; grandchildren, Lauren and Alexander Bissen; step-grandchildren, Ron DeVries, Jessie (Christian) Peterson, and Jamie (Curtis) Aue; stepgreat-grandchildren, Emma and Cate Peterson and Creighton and Carter Aue; nieces, Robyn Peterson and Kaeti Stanley; nephews, Scott Zwart, Steve Zwart and John (Mary) Bunch; great-nieces, Kate Sutton and Rebecca Stanley; and great-nephews, Brett and Brad Petersen, Eric and Alan Zwart, and Jimmy Bunch.
He was preceded in death by his parents; infant son, Conrad Joseph; beloved sisters, Elayne and Marnis; and brother-in-law, Claude Zwart.