Merlin Charles Bohn age 92, flew home to Jesus at 4:18 in the morning Wednesday, February 15, 2023, at the Manson Good Samaritan Center where he lived since 2019.
Merlin was born Tuesday, July 29th, 1930, at the Imhoff Farm, near Pomeroy, Iowa. His parents were Albert Bohn and Katheryn Bohn (Bushart.)
It was the beginning of the Depression and Merlin understood the importance of contributing to the needs of his family. Milking the cows, and slopping the pigs had to be done before breakfast was on the table and before anyone would walk the mile to school. At age nine he began making small scale farm equipment toys. He would assemble and paint them and sell them to neighbors or merchants in Pomeroy or Manson. Sadly, he did not keep any of those toys, but he did make many others with those hands throughout his lifetime for family, and friends.
Merlin attended school at Lincoln Township Country School until 7th grade. He was in the class of 1949, although Merlin was obliged to quit school and help run the family farm that was newly acquired by Albert. He stated that if he had the chance, he wanted to become a doctor, or pilot but Merlin was determined to obey his parents' wishes. He was a loving and dutiful son and remained a trusting friend to all who knew him.
Merlin also attended from an early age the Manson Mennonite Church. He attended Sunday School and then Mennonite Youth Foundation or MYF. And that is where he met Shirley Ann Miller who recently moved to Iowa from Sarasota Florida. She was helping run the garage on the outskirts of Manson with her parents Ernie and Beulah Miller.
Merlin served 2 years in Voluntary Service in Kansas City Kansas, during the Korean Conflict at the Kansas City Children's Home and it was there that the letters began to Shirley who was attending Nursing School in Kansas. Merlin was a self-taught musician from a very young age who could play the fiddle, guitar, banjo, mandolin, autoharp, and accordion to name a few, by ear. I am sure that the children there loved his bass singing voice- He sang in quartets and other groups while attending church there, and later used his gifts in Manson Meridian Singers in the mid 1990's.
Merlin Charles Bohn and Shirley Ann Miller were married December 1954, in Sarasota Florida, by Pastor T.H. Brennamen. The couple honeymooned in St. Augustine and then headed north to Iowa to begin their life together. Merlin and Shirley celebrated 61 wedding anniversaries until she passed March 23, 2015, in Sarasota, Florida.
He sang in various church quartets and played guitar at Evangelical Mennonite Church and helped with the MYF and Voluntary Service Unit stationed in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Merlin's hands and talents reached out to so many. He was a strong, and humble man.
Merlin became the father of three daughters, six grandsons, and five great grandchildren. He loved small children and babies instinctively would reach out to Merlin. All that knew this man have various memories that they cherish about him. He is missed, and our lives will not be the same without having him here. His twinkling eyes, and impish sense of humor remain in the various memories. We all are better to have known Merlin. I know that it was his desire that all his family and friends come to know the height and depth and the love of God in Christ Jesus by submitting their lives to Him.
Merlin is survived by his daughters Bernita (Kenneth) Klamm of Spring Creek, NV; Beverly (John) DiPaola of Dublin, OH; Pamella Bohn of Manson, IA; grandsons Douglas (Kim) Heimgartner; Michael Heimgartner and Bradley (Courtney) Heimgartner all of Spring Creek, NV; Matthew (Kellee) DiPaola of Columbus, OH; Brian (Madison) DiPaola of Norwood, CO; Nathan Sullens of Manson, IA; great granddaughters Jorden and Hayzlee Heimgartner of Spring Creek, NV; great grandsons Austin and Hudson Heimgartner of Spring Creek, NV; and great granddaughter Penelope DiPaola of Columbus, OH; as well as his sister Mardella Bohn who currently resides at the Good Samaritan Society--Manson since May of 2016.
He is preceded in death by his parents Albert and Kathryn; sister Delores (Bohn) Matrinez; infant sister Dorothy Jean Bohn; stillborn son Charles Edward Bohn; and his wife Shirley Ann (Miller) Bohn.
Funeral services for Merlin will be held at a later date.
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