Ronald James Aschbrenner
Ronald ("Ron," "Uncle Ronnie") James Aschbrenner, 78, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, died peacefully surrounded by loved ones on Thursday, Aug. 13, 2020. As he was listening to his favorite song, " I Can Only Imagine," he took his final breath and gave up his long fight with cancer. A visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday at Murdoch Funeral Home & Cremation Service in Marion. An outdoor funeral service with full military honors will take place at 10:30 a.m. on Monday at Linwood Cemetery in Cedar Rapids.
Ron was born on July 18, 1942, in Sumner, Iowa, the son of Arthur and Elsie (Lemke) Aschbrenner. He served in the U.S. military for more than 25 years, with service in the Navy, Naval Reserves and the National Guard. Ron married Shirley Warnke on Nov. 22, 1963, in Sumner. He worked as a park ranger for Black Hawk County and then moved to Morgan Creek Park in Cedar Rapids to work for Linn County Conservation. Ron became a rural mail carrier for the U.S. Post Office and retired in the summer of 2002.
Ron was an outdoorsman who enjoyed hunting, fishing and metal detecting. He was a member of the Izaak Walton League, the NRA and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. He also was a member of two car clubs and owned a 1929 Model A and a 1950 Pontiac. Ron loved traveling, whether it was with his family, with Shirley, on military trips or disaster relief. He enjoyed meeting new people and seeing new things and ventured to six different continents. He was known for driving hours on vacation to see places like Ayers Rock, Normandy Beach, the Alaska Highway and various beaches and lighthouses.
Ron's strong Christian faith was visible in all he did. He was a member of Concordia Lutheran Church in Cedar Rapids, volunteered as an elder and visited shut-ins. He also supported Wycliffe's Bible Ministry.
Ron will be remembered for his sarcastic sense of humor and as a kind and generous neighbor, loving husband and devoted father.
Survivors include his wife of 56 years, Shirley Aschbrenner of Cedar Rapids; daughters, Tania (Jim) Johnson of Cedar Rapids, Terese (Dave) Nelson of North Liberty, Iowa, and Tiffany (Joel) Kercheval of Montezuma, Iowa; grandchildren, Kai and Cameron Johnson, Jenna and Kelly Nelson and Joel, Laila and Analeece Kercheval; sister-in-law, Beverly Aschbrenner of Moneta, Va.; several nieces; and one nephew.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Arthur and Elsie Aschbrenner; stepmother, Ella Aschbrenner; brother, Milan Aschbrenner; sister, Lois Domke; and brother-in-law, Dale Domke.
The family wants to thank the staff of Garnett Place of Cedar Rapids, especially his "drill sergeant" Tina, who cared for him as her own. Also many thanks to the staff at the VA Hospital for taking care of Ron and all veterans with the love and respect that they deserve.
Because of Ron's love of the outdoors and his service to the county parks, memorials may be directed to Linn County Conservation.
Please share a memory of Ronald at www.murdochfuneralhome.com under obituaries. The family hopes that you will be able to attend the visitation or outdoor service to share your stories. All guests are respectfully requested to wear a mask and practice social distancing. Guests may feel free to bring a chair to the outdoor service.