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He married Lois Clare of Casper, Wyoming in 1946 and had six children: Clare (Linda) Greiner of Derby, Iowa, Cathy (John) Conway of Wellman, Iowa, Doug (Deb) Greiner of Littleton, Colorado, Beverly (Russ) Rutten of Arvada, Colorado, Tom (Renee) Greiner of Parkston, South Dakota, and Peter (Lisa) Greiner of Albia, Iowa. He had sixteen grandchildren and twenty-four great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, Lois, in 1985, and two sisters, Marjorie Blumenstein of Geneseo, Illinois and Cordell Hopson of Orlando, Florida. He was also preceded in death by his friend, Maxine Madsen, of Alden, Iowa. He is survived by his special friend, Peg Haluska, of Albia, Iowa.
He farmed near Wellman and was a pioneer in agricultural fertilizers, equipment, hog confinement, and concrete, introducing anhydrous ammonia from his Ke-Wash Fertilizer Company in Keota, Iowa. He introduced Simmental cattle into this country from Germany in the early 1970s. He built a USDA meat packing plant near Sigourney in the 1970s. In 1981 he moved to Albia and purchased Indian Hills Inn. He always had an interest in aviation and built his own four-passenger plane in 2005.
In 1943 he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and became a first pilot for the B-24 "Liberator" bomber. He was sent overseas in early 1945, was shot down over Magdeburg, Germany on March 2, 1945, taken prisoner, and liberated by American troops several months later. He was awarded a Purple Heart Medal, a European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, and a World War II Victory Medal. He was a member of the American Ex-Prisoners of War and enjoyed attending their local meetings in Boone.
Howard was involved in a number of community projects during his career and spearheaded the building of St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Wellman, the Washington County Developmental Center in Washington, Lagos Acres Golf Course in Keota, and the Keokuk County Expo fairgrounds in Sigourney. He served on the board of directors of Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa for nineteen years, eight of which he was president. He is the author of two books, Flying High in Iowa, and Letters to Mom From Your Air Force Pilot. At the time of his death he was a member of St. Mary's Church in Albia.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Wellman at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 14, 2018. A luncheon will follow services. Inurnment will be in St. Mary's Cemetery in Keota at 2:30 p.m. with military rites conducted. Visitation will be from 1:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Friday, April 13, 2018, at Sinnott Funeral Home in Albia, Iowa, where there will be a rosary held at 4:00 p.m., conducted by St. Mary's Altar and Rosary, and a Christian Wake Service held at 6:00 p.m., Friday evening at the funeral home. Howard's family will be present to greet friends from 4-7 p.m. Friday evening.
A memorial fund has been established for St. Joseph's Church in Wellman.
Online condolences may be left for the family at sinnottfuneralhome.com. Arrangements entrusted with Sinnott Funeral Homes.
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