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Donald E. Pagel

Donald E. Pagel

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Donald E. Pagel


SUMNER—Donald E. Pagel, 83, of rural Sumner, died Tuesday morning, July 28, 2020, in his home, surrounded by his family.

Funeral services will be held 10:00 AM Saturday, August 1, 2020, at the United Methodist Church in Sumner with Rev. Julie Ahrens officiating. Interment will follow at Union United Methodist Church Cemetery, rural Sumner. Visitation will be held from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Friday, July 31st at Becker-Milnes Funeral Home in Sumner and for one hour preceding services at the church on Saturday. Memorials may be made to the family for later designation. Online condolences may be left at

Due to the state and federal guidance on gatherings due to the Covid-19 pandemic, social distancing will be required. Those in attendance are encouraged to wear a mask. We encourage those who are feeling ill to stay home and contact the family with a card, a note on the webpage, text, or a call.

Donald Eugene, son of Walter and Phyllis (Kohlmeyer) Pagel was born March 26, 1937, in rural Fayette County, Iowa. He was baptized and confirmed at the Union Evangelical United Brethren Church, rural Sumner. Don attended country school and graduated from Sumner High School in 1955 (was voted Homecoming King). On December 11, 1960, he was united in marriage with Donna Henn at the Evangelical United Brethren Church in Sumner. The two of them were always seen together. His wife was his rock throughout his life. They would have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary this December. To this union three sons were born, Dan, Dennis, and Dean. Don was a lifetime farmer in the rural Sumner area. In addition to grain farming, he raised cattle, farrowed hogs, and worked at John Deere & Co. in Waterloo for thirty one years, retiring in December of 1991. Don was a lifetime active member of Union Methodist Church, rural Sumner, and Farm Bureau. He enjoyed hunting (deer and pheasant), and playing 500 (was involved in a couple card clubs). One of Don’s greatest joys was imparting his wisdom of farming to his grandson, Trevor. Don’s grandchildren meant the world to him. He always wanted what was best for every one of his family members. Even if we knew how to do various tasks, he would always tell us how to do it his way (the right way).

Don is survived by his wife, Donna of Sumner; three children, Dan Pagel of Sumner, Dennis Pagel of New Hampton, and Dean (Michelle) Pagel of Sumner; three grandchildren, Haley (Aarik) Deering of Postville, Trevor Pagel of Sumner, and Kelsey Pagel of Waterloo; one great-grandchild on the way; two brothers, Albert and Roger Pagel, both of Sumner; five sisters-in-law, Joyce (Bill) Schaufenbuel, Linda Pagel, Diane Pagel, all of Sumner, Esther (Don) Wittenberg of Denver, and Virginia Bohlen of Waterloo; and many nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his four brothers, Lyle, Duane, Russel, and August Pagel; sisters-in-law, Jean, Joan, and Peggy Pagel, and Edna (Irv) Youngblut; and brothers-in-law, Buster (Joann) Henn, Curly Henn, and Arnold (Ann) Henn.

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