Funeral services were held on Tuesday, April 19th at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Cherokee, with Pastor Jon Riggert officiating. Burial was in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery in rural Aurelia with military rites at the cemetery by L.A. Wescott Post #2253 of the V.F.W. Boothby Funeral Home in Cherokee was in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be left at www.boothbyfuneral.com
Russel was born on August 4, 1926 to Klaus & Grace (Krull) Van Westen at Rock Rapids. He grew up in the Rock Rapids area and was united in marriage to Lola Kolpin on May 3, 1953 in Cherokee. Russel worked for Lundell Manufacturing for many years. He was a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church, where he was the church custodian for many years. He was a veteran of the Korean Conflict. He had been a resident of Cherokee since 1953. He enjoyed playing cards, listening to music, especially from the Big Band Era, as well as fishing and flying kites with his nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife Lola on April 2, 1997; brothers Hilbert in 1984 and Raymond in 2009; sister Martha Doeden in 1997;and brothers-in-law Kenneth Klaassen, George Doeden, John Abuhl, Sully Rogers, Stanley Jurrens, and Don Hippert.
He is survived by one brother and four sisters: Albertus Van Westen and his wife Ruth of Luverne, Minnesota; Hilda Klaassen of George; Betty Abuhl of Cedar Falls; Inez Rogers of Owatonna, Minnesota; Shirley Heikes and her husband Howard of Mantorville, Minnesota; two sisters-in-law: Pearl DeBooy of Rock Rapids and Carol Van Westen of Sibley; special friends Orville & Lila Saxby of Cherokee; and also many nieces and nephews.