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George R. Etzel

Cedar Rapids

George R. Etzel, 88, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2019, at Mercy Hallmar in Cedar Rapids. A graveside service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 31, at Lafayette Cemetery in rural Alburnett. Arrangements are by Murdoch Funeral Home & Cremation Service in Marion.
George was born on the Etzel family farm near Lafayette, Iowa, on June 6, 1931, in the same room where his father and all of his siblings were born.
George attended and graduated from Alburnett High School. He continued his education at Coe College in Cedar Rapids. After high school, George served honorably in the U.S. Army from 1951 to 1953 during the Korean War. After being wounded in the war, he spent 362 days in a Hot Springs, Ark., hospital recovering. For his actions in the Korean War, George was awarded the Purple Heart. He retired from the Army in October 1953. George then worked at Tait & Wagner Real Estate Co. in Cedar Rapids until he left to pursue his passion in farming. He farmed up until the Etzel family donated their family farm of Sugar Grove to Indian Creek Nature Center in 2016.
George enjoyed many hobbies. He enjoyed the arts, researching presidents, and he had a passion for reading that compared to no other. Often he would be reading up to four different books at any given time. His famous saying was, "Taking a book away from me is like taking my right arm." George also loved his animals. His cats always received treatment like they were kings. George always loved sharing stories of his beloved Canada geese, Elizabeth and Taylor. George's passion was farming, and he loved the land he was raised on. Harvest always was a special time for George. One of the highlights was the home-cooked meals that were made by his mom and later his sister, Bert.
George was preceded in death by his grandparents, Henry Etzel and Sara Maier Etzel, and Gus and Alice Johnson; parents, Ernest and Ina (Johnson) Etzel; brother, Harold; and sisters, Geraldine, Esther and Bertha.
Please share a memory of George at www.murdochfuneralhome.com under obituaries.
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