Robert Christian Andersen, the son of Martin and Johanna (Jensen) Andersen, was born on September 16, 1921, in Tennant, Iowa. He attended Rabbit Hollow #2 country school through the eighth grade. He served in the U.S. Army from October 19, 1942, until November 10, 1945, where he participated in the African and European Theatres. On December 25, 1946, Robert married Irma Johanna Sorensen at her parents’ home in Harlan, Iowa. The couple farmed east of Harlan for 36 years, retiring to Harlan in 1984. Irma died on July 17, 1993, in Harlan.
Robert was a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Harlan. He was also a member of the Shelby County VFW Post 941. Refinishing furniture was one of Robert’s longtime hobbies. He enjoyed watching the neighborhood activity from a chair in his garage, and he loved bird watching.
Robert C. Andersen died on Sunday, September 19, 2004, at Myrtue Memorial Hospital in Harlan, Iowa, at the age of 83 years and 3 days.
Preceding Robert in death were his parents; his wife, Irma J. Andersen; two brothers, Arnold Andersen and Harold Andersen; and one infant granddaughter, Kathy Andersen. Survivors include three daughters, Linda (Art) Andersen of Owasso, Oklahoma, Bonnie (Allan) Ickes of Harlan, Iowa, and Debbie (Craig) Musfeldt of Manning, Iowa; two sons, Robert Andersen and his friend, Rhonda Brown, and Rick (Cheryl) Andersen, all of Harlan, Iowa; one brother, Raymond Andersen of Harlan, Iowa; one sister-in-law, Evelyn Andersen of Harlan, Iowa; 14 grandchildren, Julie Livingston and Tammy Pond (children of Linda), Shawna Jacobsen, Sandra Harmon, and Carmen Ickes (children of Bonnie), Elisha Leinen, Marsha and Mark Andersen (children of Robert), Justin, Katie, and Joel Musfeldt (children of Debbie), and Ross, Nathan, and Cali Andersen (children of Rick); 9 great-grandchildren; one nephew, Allan Andersen of Harlan, Iowa; and other relatives and friends.
Funeral services were held on Wednesday, September 22, 2004, at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Harlan, Iowa, with Pastor Heather Ploen officiating. Marge Ahrenholtz served as organist and Lee Nelson was the soloist. Honorary casket bearers were Allan Andersen, Phil Daringer, Max Bacon, Norman Piercy, and Leonard Petsche. Active casket bearers were Mark Andersen, Justin Musfeldt, Ross Andersen, Steve Livingston, Josh Leinen, and Tyler Jacobsen. Shelby County VFW Post #941 and Helmer Reyelt AL Post #150 were in charge of military rites. Burial was in the Harlan Cemetery in Harlan, Iowa. The Burmeister-Johannsen Funeral Home in Harlan was in charge of the arrangements.