Harland Fosness, 1925-2014

Published 9:50 am Monday, May 5, 2014

Harland Lemar Fosness, 88, of Lake Mills, formerly of the Dodge County area, died Friday, May 2, 2014, at Lake Mills Care Center in Lake Mills.

Harland Fosness

Harland Fosness

Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday at Trinity Lutheran Church in rural Thompson, Iowa, with the Rev. Katie Pals officiating. Burial will be in Trinity Lutheran Church Cemetery. Military honors will be conducted by the Northwood VFW Post No. 6779.

Visitation will be from 4 to 7 p.m. today at Mittelstadt Funeral Home, 902 E. Main St. in Lake Mills, and will continue one hour prior to services at the church on Tuesday.

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Harland Lemar Fosness was born on Aug. 18, 1925, in Eden Township, Winnebago County, Iowa, to parents Leonard and Bernet (Fure) Fosness. He was baptized and confirmed at Trinity Lutheran Church in rural Thompson and attended school in Thompson, Scarville and Lake Mills, Iowa.

On Sept. 19, 1942, Harland was united in marriage with Irene Anderson. The couple enjoyed 52 years together and had four children, Bonnie, Jon, Colleen and Diane.

Harland enlisted in the United States Marine Corp. on Nov. 23, 1943, and was an amphibious tractor operator. He participated in Iwo Jima action on Feb. 19, 1945, and the Volcano Islands on March 16, 1945.

Following his honorable discharge from the military, Harland began farming in the Lake Mills area. In 1954, the family moved to Dodge County. He was a member of the Minnesota Soybean Board, an NFO organizer and a DFL delegate multiple times. Harland was also a very active member of Faith Lutheran Church in Dodge Center and served on the church council.

Harland married Betty (Gooden) Peterson on April 16, 1997.

He loved antique tractor rides, tractor pulls, planting corn and anything to do with farming. Harland also enjoyed dancing, playing cards and coffee with friends and family.  He always looked forward to the completion of harvest so he could head to Texas, where he spent winters for almost 40 years.

Harland is survived by his wife, Betty, of Lake Mills; children Bonnie Johnson of Rochester, Jon (Bev) Fosness of Mantorville, Colleen Smith of Hastings and Diane (Jim) Gillard of Hastings; two brothers, Roger (Darlene) Fosness of Owatonna and Darus Fosness of Los Angeles; a sister, Arneida Greenberg, of Los Angeles; nine grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; six great-great-grandchildren; step-daughter, LaDonna (Harvey) Rognes of Lake Mills; two step-granddaughters; five step-great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Irene; infant brother, William; sister, Mardel; and a great-grandson, Ross Johnson.