M. Eugene (Gene) Jones, 85, died at his home farm near Lime Springs on March 27, 2014, after several years of declining health.

He was born July 26, 1928, at the Cresco hospital to Edward W. and Edyth I. (Nagel) Jones and was baptized as an infant at the United Methodist Church in Lime Springs.

He grew up on farms north and east of Lime Springs and graduated from Lime Springs High School in 1946 where he excelled in all sports activities.

He farmed with his father until he entered the United States Army in 1953, serving in the military police with the sentry dog platoon stationed at the Panama Canal. He was honorably discharged in 1955.

He returned to work the family farm and was a livestock buyer, trucker and ring man with the Spring Valley sales barn for over 30 years. He was also a farrier in the area for many years.

He was united in marriage to Rita Wemett in 1959 and they resided on the family farm for 54 years. They were blessed with three children, Richard, Carol and Ann.

He was a member of the United Methodist Church,

the Lime Springs American Legion Post 545, a charter member of the Lime Springs Saddle Club and a former member of Minnesota/Iowa Horse Plowing Association. He had a lifelong love of horses and will be remembered by many as a storyteller for all occasions. He enjoyed card games with friends and family and spent many retirement hours in his shop doing leatherwork.

He is survived by his wife, Rita, of Lime Springs; four children, Gary (Marsha) Ramaker of Keokuk, Iowa, Richard (Karin) Jones and Carol (Eric) Andersen, both of Lime Springs and Ann (Don) Mork of Sanders, Mont.; nine grandchildren, Andrew and Robert Ramaker, Curtiss Jones, Sarah Jones Barron, Michael Jones, Erin Andersen Ryan, Lydia Andersen and Alan and McKenzie Mork; three great-grandchildren, Ethan Ramaker, Marley Jean Harmening and Felix Eugene Barron.

He was preceded in death by his sister, Maxine Thompson.

Memorial services were held March 30 at the Lime Springs Community Center with Dr. Donna Ihns and the Rev. Melanie Greengo from the Lime Springs United Methodist Church officiating. The services of the Iowa cremation society were used with inurnment at a later date. Military rites were conducted by the Lime Springs American Legion Post 545 and members of the Iowa Honor guard presented the flag to the family. Memorials were designated to the United Methodist Church and Pleasant Hill Cemetery of Lime Springs.

Honorary pallbearers were Dale Reis, Ray Gasser, Travis Grover, John Sullivan, Dick Schwade and Don Laue.