Pella Chronicle


March 29, 2013

Willard Harkness

Pella — Funeral services for Willard Harkness, of Tracy, were held on Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at the Bybee & Davis Funeral Home with Elder Bill McDonald, officiating.  Burial followed in the Bethel Cemetery, Tracy.  Musical selections of:  “On the Wings of a Dove”, “In the Garden” and “Seven Spanish Angels” were played.  Organist, Mary Jane Sneller shared the prelude and postlude.  Casket bearers included:  Kelby Evans, Kurtis Harkness, Christopher Sciarrotta, Cody Harkness, Tyler Sloan and Joey Sciarrotta II.

Willard Eugene “Butch” Harkness was born May 31, 1938 in Tracy, Iowa the son of Ival and Hilda (Johnson) Harkness.

He was raised in the Tracy area and attended Tracy schools.  As a young man, Willard worked on his family’s farm and coal mined.  On February 3, 1956 he was united in marriage to Carolyn Mitchel at her parent’s home in Pella.  The couple lived and farmed in the Tracy area all their married lives, with the exception of a few years in Oregon.  While living in Oregon, Willard worked commercial construction and served as a stuntman in a western movie.  When the couple returned to Iowa, Willard farmed, sheered sheep and was well known for breaking horses.

When he wasn’t working, Willard enjoyed hunting, especially coyotes.  He and Carolyn also enjoyed traveling to different parts of the United States and to other countries.  Wherever they went, Willard always made a friend because of outgoing nature and friendliness.  He will be remembered as a jokester, story-teller, and a loyal husband, father, grandfather and friend.

Willard passed away on Saturday, March 16, 2013 at the Mercy Medical Center, in Des Moines, at the age of 74 years.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Junella Sinclair.

Those left to honor his memory include his wife, Carolyn; son, Gary (Lori) Harkness of Tracy; daughter, Brenda Evans (Dave) of Hamilton; five grandchildren:  Heather Harkness, Kurtis Harkness, Cody Harkness (Rhonda Kellar), Ali Evans (Tyler Sloan) and Kelby Evans (Whitney Courtney); three great-grandchildren:  Kade Harkness and Alivia and Jaelynn Harkness and many other family members and friends.

For those desiring, memorial contributions may be made to the Tracy Fire Department.  Online condolences may be left at BertrandFuneral


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