Sylvester J. ‘Butch’ Finzel, 79, of Bernard, formerly of Farley and Epworth, passed away Sunday, March 21, at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City.
Visitation for Butch was held 4-8 p.m., Sunday, March 28, at the Reiff Funeral Home in Farley.
Services for Butch were at 10:30 a.m., Monday, March 29, at the Reiff Funeral Home in Farley, with Rev. Michael Schuelller presiding. Burial was at St. John’s Cemetery in Centralia. Pallbearers were Dacia Finzel, Brandon Finzel, Whitley Finzel, Dylan Finzel, Anna Finzel, Nicole Finzel, Trevor Finzel and Brittnay Barnhart.
He was born Dec. 19, 1941, in Dubuque, son of Merlin and Lillian (Erschen) Finzel and received his education from the Epworth area schools. Butch’s first job was hauling milk for Joe Simon in Farley. He loved mechanics and worked for Ruan and Holte International Harvester. In January 1977, he found his niche as a Service Diesel Mechanic for UPS and worked there until his retirement in 2004.
For all those who truly knew Butch, he never really retired. He was always on call to repair a semi, restore John Deere tractors or repair tractor engines after tractor pulls. He served as treasurer of the Hawkeye Vintage Tractor Pull association. He organized parades and rides and enjoyed riding his vintage John Deere tractors in them.
On Jan. 11, 1964, he was united in marriage to Vera Pierce and they later divorced. He married Bernadine ‘Bernie’ Davis Nov. 16, 2002 in Dubuque. Butch enjoyed his family, loved telling stories and truly lived his life to the fullest. He also enjoyed taking his annual trips with his brothers-in-law to Wyoming and Montana hunting for mule deer and fishing.
He is survived by his wife, Bernadine Finzel of Bernard; six children: Lynne Finzel of Elkader, Laverne ‘Buddy’ (DeAnn) Finzel of Cascade, Alan ‘A.J.’ (Sara) Finzel of New Vienna, John (Tracy) Finzel and Travis (Angie) Finzel of Cascade and Cody (Trista Nance) Finzel of Dubuque; 15 grandchildren; 17 great grandchildren; one brother, Eugene (Dianne) Finzel of Bellevue; two sisters, Mary (Dan) Schlichte of Cedar Rapids and Katherine (Tim) Meyer of Central City; brothers and sisters-in-law: Nancy Birch, Steve (Judy) Davis, Fred (Susan) Davis, Mary (Mike) Daughette, and Donna (Mike) Pierce Loetz, all of Dubuque; and many cousins, nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Laverne Finzel; and a nephew, Paul Finzel.
Anyone interested in sending memorials may send them to Reiff Funeral Home, Attention: Sylvester ‘Butch’ Finzel Family at P.O. Box 99, Farley, Iowa, 52046. You may view the Video Tribute and give online condolences to the family at www.reifffuneralhomeinc.com