Shirley P. De Graaff

Shirley P. De Graaff, 90, of Rock Valley, died Saturday, February 01, 2014 at Whispering Heights in Rock Valley.

Funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday, February 7, 2014 at Tabernacle Baptist Church in George, Iowa with a luncheon to follow.  Burial will be at Valley View Cemetery in Rock Valley following the luncheon at church.  Visitation with the family present will be held from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Thursday, February 6, 2014 at Porter Funeral home in Rock Valley.

Memorials may be given to the Tabernacle Baptist Church Building Fund and condolences may be left for the family at

Shirley Phyllis (Stuckenbruck) De Graaff was born December 6, 1923 at her family’s farm south of Rock Valley. She was the only child of Rich and Helen (Borchers) Stuckenbruck. Shirley attended Country School through 8th grade then Rock Valley Public School where she graduated with the class of 1941. She was united in marriage to Harold De Graaff on August 29, 1946. The couple farmed south of Rock Valley until 2000. They retired to Rock Valley in 2003. Harold passed away on October 23, 2007, in Rock Valley, after more than 61 years of marriage. In November 2011 Shirley moved to Aspen Heights Assisted Living in Hull; then in December 2013 moved to Whispering Heights Nursing Home in Rock Valley.

Shirley was a member of Tabernacle Baptist Church of George, Iowa. She believed in Jesus Christ alone for eternal life. Her heart’s desire was for her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren to know the Lord and walk with Him! She loved spending time with family and friends. Shirley was a hard worker and enjoyed gardening, canning, cooking, sewing and working alongside her husband doing the farm work.

Shirley is survived by her children, Douglas (Judy) De Graaff of Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Sharla (David) Brammer of Sioux Center, and Curtis (Karen) De Graaff of Brownsburg, Indiana; 11 grandchildren; 12 great grandchildren; 4 sisters-in-law: Angeline Oolbekkink of New London, Minnesota, Verna (Bill) Boer of Rock Valley and Alma (Jerry) Van Aalsburg of Modesto, California and Gladys De Graaff of Meridian, Idaho.

Shirley was preceded in death by her loving husband, Harold De Graaff, her parents and 5 brothers-in-law: Francis, Donald, William, Mitchell and Elmer De Graaff; 3 sisters-in-law: Josephine Peters, Betty and Minnie De Graaff and a grandson, Benjamin Douglas De Graaff.

Phone Service At East Elementary Has Been Restored

telephone no message lightSheldon, Iowa — Telephone service has been restored at East Elementary School in Sheldon!  Thursday afternoon the school’s phone system went down, leaving them with only one phone line.  Now that the service has been restored, please resume using 324-4337 to contact East Elementary.

Marie C. Vik

Marie C. Vik, age 89 of Rock Rapids, IA died Friday January 31, 2014 at Sanford Hospital in Rock Rapids, IA.

Funeral service will be 1:00 PM Wednesday, February 5, 2014 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Rock Rapids with Rev. Dan Kordahl, Rev. Neil Vik and Rev. Keith Vik officiating. Burial will follow at Riverview Cemetery in Rock Rapids, IA.

Visitation will be Tuesday, February 4th from 2:00 to 8:00 PM with family present from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at the Jurrens Funeral Home of Rock Rapids, IA.

Marie Christine (Christiansen) Vik was born January 2, 1925 at Viborg, South Dakota to Niels and Jensine (Volhoj) Christiansen. She was baptized on May 10, 1925 and confirmed on September 9, 1939 at Bethany Lutheran Church at Viborg, South Dakota. She attended Viborg Public School for twelve years. She met Elmer M. Vik at a dance in Centerville, South Dakota. They were married on June 28, 1945. While Elmer was in the service during World War II, they lived in Charleston, South Carolina and San Francisco.

They were blessed with three children: Karen, Neil, and Keith. The family moved to Rock Rapids, Iowa in 1956 where Elmer was a Salesman with the Kraft Foods Agricultural Division and Better Nutrients, Inc. for thirty-four years. After forty-seven years of marriage, her beloved husband and best friend, Elmer passed away on March 26, 1993. Marie especially enjoyed her twenty years of volunteer work for Hospice. She was a faithful member of Immanuel Lutheran Church. She served as a Sunday School teacher, Choir member, Janitor, Financial Secretary, Quilter, and Staff Support. Marie was an amazing homemaker. Her children had a great childhood and remember home being a safe and wonderful place.

They have fond memories of her waiting on the front porch for them to come home from school. She loved to be in the kitchen and was happiest when cooking or baking for family, friends, or neighbors. She was known for her lefse, meatballs, pies, rolls, cookies, and birthday cakes. She was faithful, loyal, kind, considerate, pleasant, stable, and steady. She was always ready if company dropped by. Many people have enjoyed her gracious hospitality. Marie was loved by many people including her daughter Karen and her husband, Robert Reemts of Rock Rapids, and sons, Neil and his wife Sacia of Kent, WA and Keith and his wife, Angie of Ashland, WI. She is survived by her brother Roger Christiansen of Sioux Falls, SD.

She was a grandmother to Jill and her husband, Mitch Thompson of Sioux Falls, SD; Mindy and her husband, Travis Johnson of Beresford, SD; John Vik and his wife, Heather of Lincoln, NE; Maren and her husband, Theodore Wolff of Coppell, TX; Adam Lehner of Kearney, NE, Kalyn Lehner of Bothell, WA, Christina, Amy, and Lani Vik of Ashland, WI; and Kiah, Erica, Anna, Andrew and his wife, Rachel Vik of Lacrosse, WI. Her great-grandchildren are Taylor and Eric Thompson of Sioux Falls, SD; Macy Johnson of Beresford, SD, Emma Vik of Lincoln, NE; and Cailin Vik of LaCrosse, WI.

Marie was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Elmer; and brothers, Leroy and Jim Christiansen.

New Personal Mobility Vehicles Come To Northwest Iowa

FreegoSibley, Iowa — Tucked away in a garage in Sibley, Dave Herbert has what he thinks will be the next big thing in personal mobility.  It’s the Freego, a self-balancing electric personal mobility vehicle for which he is setting up United States distribution.

Most folks are familiar with the Segway personal mobility vehicle, and the Freego is similar in appearance, so much so in fact that Dave refers to it as the “Hong Kong Segway”.

He says that among the differences is the purchase price of the Freego, which is less than half that of a Segway.

Herbert says that not only is the Freego more economical to buy than the Segway, but that battery replacement costs are vastly different, as well. He says that while Segway battery replacement is more than $1,000, the batteries in a Freego can be replaced for around $100.

Herbert says the reason he got involved with Freego was twofold. First of all, he had posted a video of the unboxing of his first unit on his 35,000 viewer youtube channel, and had inquiries about buying them from several of his channel subscribers. In addition, he was offered the United States as his exclusive territory to market these vehicles.

He says that while the Freegos are fun, they would also be beneficial to someone who may not be able to get around well anymore, but isn’t ready for a wheelchair.

Herbert says that he expects his first shipment by the end of February, and once he has firm price information, his company’s website,, will go live.

KIWA’s Justin Hellinga had the opportunity to try out a Freego, under the expert eye of Herbert, and to be honest, we had a hard time getting Justin off the thing. Video of his test drive is below.

Dordt Mens Basketball Team Fifth in National Poll

PrintThe Dordt College Defender men’s basketball team held at the number 5 spot in the NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Poll released Tuesday, January 28th.

The Defenders went 2-0 last week to improve to 21-2 this season with wins over Mount Marty and Dakota State.  The Defenders took 328 votes in the polling, the same total they had in the January 21 poll.

Fellow GPAC members Midland and Hastings both improved their standings with Midland moving up three spots to number 7 and Hastings jumped two spots to number 13.   Morningside is in the receiving vote’s portion of the poll.

Cardinal Stritch of Wisconsin holds the top spot for the second week in a row with Indiana Southeast number 2.  The top six teams in the poll remained unchanged from last week.

Iowa Girls Basketball Tournament Pairings Released

ighsauThe Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union has released parings for Girls Regional Basketball Tournaments.  Tournament action begins in Class 1A on Thursday February 13th.  Class 2A and 3A teams will see first round action Saturday February 15th, with 4A and 5A Regionals getting underway Wednesday February 19th.

You can follow the links below to see when your favorite teams are in action:

CLICK HERE for Class 1A Pairings

CLICK HERE for Class 2A Pairings

CLICK HERE for Class 3A Pairings

CLICK HERE for Class 4A Pairings

CLICK HERE for Class 5A Pairings