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Donald Krambeck - 96

2/27/1919 - 12/27/2015

Clinton, Iowa

Donald F. Krambeck age 96 of Clinton, passed away peacefully on Sunday, December 27, 2015 at Prairie Hills Assisted Living in Clinton. A Celebration of Life Service will be held 11:30 AM Saturday, January 9, 2016 at the First Congregational Church, Clinton. Visitation is planned for Saturday Jan. 9th9:30 AM until the service hour at the church. Burial will be held at Oakland Cemetery, with military rites held by the Clinton AMVETS. The Pape Funeral Home is assisting the family. A funeral luncheon will be held at the church following the graveside service. Online condolences may be left at

Donald was born on Feb. 27, 1919 in Davenport, IA, the son of Frank and Josephine (Waspi) Krambeck. He graduated from Davenport Central High School in 1936, where he won state championships in Debate and was Co-Valedictorian of his graduating class. After graduation he moved to Clinton and managed Early Bird Hatchery and where he met the beautiful Myrle Bickford. They married on June 18, 1938 in Clinton and enjoyed a blessed 59 years until she died in 1997.

In 1940, Don bought the Early Bird Hatchery and renamed it Krambeck Feed and Supply Company, where he owned and operated the business for more than 45 years. The business grew to a Regional Agri-Business and was recognized multiple times by the Ralston Purina Company, Hy-Line Poultry Farms, and others.

Don’s greatest passion was flying airplanes. He took his first flying lesson in 1938 and by 1940 received his commercial license and instructor rating. Following the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1942, Don joined the Army Air Corp, where he was assigned as an Air Transport Command Pilot. He was assigned to the China-Burma-India Theater in support of the famous Flying Tigers. He flew a documented 155 missions as a chief pilot. He received many military service medals including the Air Medal with multiple oak leaf clusters.

He was a member of the First Congregational Church, Clinton for more than 60 years, Clinton Rotary Club, Izaak Walton League, American Legion, V.F.W., Scottish Rites Masons. His community service includes the Clinton Airport Commission, director of the Iowa Grain & Feed Association, director of the Iowa Poultry Association, director of the Camanche State Bank (20 years), board member of the Mercy Hospital Foundation, Clinton County Historical Foundation, the Mississippi Valley Alzheimer’s Association, and the Clinton Chamber of Commerce.

His greatest community service was his commitment to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Association, where he personally raised over $800,000 and was the leading individual fundraiser in the nation for many years. For his dedication, he was awarded the Clinton County Bar Association Liberty Bell Award and the Governor’s Volunteer Award from Gov. Terry Bransted. He looked forward to his annual week long canoeing trip down the Mississippi River and its tributaries with the Great River Rumble Group, participating well into his 90’s.

Donald is survived by his son, James (Gail) Krambeck of West Des Moines, IA; three grandsons, Brent (Samantha) Krambeck of Chicago, IL, Scott (Carrie) Krambeck of Denver, CO, and Matthew (Brina) Krambeck of Naperville, IL; eight great grandchildren, Ben, Macy, Lucas, Avery, Dylan, Colin, Ian, and Ashtyn Krambeck. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, Myrle, four brothers, Karl, Paul, Stanley, and Jack, and a sister, Beth.

Don was a devoted caretaker of his wife, Myrle during her 10 years of declining health, a man of strong faith, a consummate story teller, and who never met a stranger. Don had a strong allegiance to the people of Clinton and touched many lives. He will be missed and fondly remembered by many. The family is deeply grateful to the staff of Prairie Hills Assisted Living for their professional and compassionate care. Memorials may be given in Don’s name to the Alzheimer’s Association, Greater Iowa Chapter, 1730 28th Street, West Des Moines, Iowa 50266, First Congregational Church, Clinton, or the Clinton Rotary Club (Eagle Point Park Pavilion Renovation Project).


Visitation is planned for Saturday Jan. 9th 9:30 AM until the service hour at the church.


Funeral service will be held 11:30 AM Saturday, January 9, 2016 at the First Congregational Church, Clinton.

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