Dale R. Massmann, age 90, of Villard, died peacefully at his home, surrounded by family, on Thursday, May 28, 2020. A visitation will be held Saturday, May 30th, from 11:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home in Glenwood, with a graveside funeral service and interment to follow at 2:00 p.m. at Lake Amelia Cemetery, rural Villard. Haakon Vaadeland will officiate. Proper social distancing and other recommended COVID 19 precautions will be in place and observed throughout the day. It is recommended that those attending bring their own lawn chair. Arrangements are with Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home of Glenwood.
Dale Rudolph Massmann was born March 26, 1930, to Rudolph “Rudy” Fredrick and Anna (Herrmann) Massmann at home, on their farm 3 miles north of Villard, which is now the Larry Clair farm. Dale’s family moved into the town of Villard when he was 5 years old. He attended Villard Public School and Villard United Methodist Church. Dale’s father was in the livestock trucking business. During WWII Rudy was not able to keep any hired help because the army was taking every young able body. As a result, Dale learned to drive at a very young age.
When Dale was about 15 years old, his family started farming on a very small scale. Dale far preferred farming to trucking. Rudy then purchased the farm where Larry Adolphson now lives. Dale lived at home there with his parents until he was 23 years old. At that time he was drafted into the U.S. Army. He completed basic training at Fort Rylie Kansas before being sent to Fort Carson Colorado. That summer he split his time between Fort Carson and Camp Hale, near Leadville. While stationed there he fell in love the mountains of Colorado. That fall Dale was given orders to go Japan. He departed by ship around the tenth of December, first stopping in Formosa (now Taiwan), then Okinawa, then finally mainland Japan. There Dale was assigned to a trucking company. He found it interesting to see first-hand how people lived in Japan. In November, a little less than a year after setting sail for Japan, Dale was honorably discharged. He arrived back on the mainland in California and then went on to Chicago where he was discharged from Fort Sheridan at which time he returned home to Villard.
That next spring Dale rented land near Villard and started farming. About this same time he met a young school teacher, Wilmeta Stoltz, who turned out to be his future wife and soulmate. The two were united in marriage at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Villard on November 27, 1957. They made their home on a farm west of Villard where they farmed, milked dairy cows, and raised their seven children. Dale and Wilmeta were blessed with 58 years of marriage before her death in November of 2016.
Dale had always had a love for horses and eventually turned his hobby into a pleasurable business, breeding and selling Paint horses across the country. After milking was done each night, he and daughter, Kay (aka Kristin), would jump on a young horse and make a big loop around Villard. They would break a lot of horses that way. Dale raised and sold registered horses for over 30 years, eventually offering a sport horse which was a cross between a Percheron and a Paint horse.
Dale died at home on the farm, on Thursday, May 28, 2020, under the loving care of his family and Glacial Ridge Hospice, having lived to the age of 90 years. He will be greatly missed.
Dale is survived by one daughter, Kristin (Larry) Gabrielson of Alexandria; five sons: Mark (Sandy) Massmann of Glenwood, Scott (Shelly) Massmann of Villard, Rodney (Gail) Massmann of Forada, Jim (Amy) Massmann of Glenwood, and Todd (Paula) Massmann of Brandon, SD; 12 grandchildren: Jeri Penas, Brian Schmiess, Eric Schmiess, Jessica Massmann, Auston Massmann, James Gabrielson, Paige Gabrielson, Coty Massmann, Stephanie (Dominic) Baker, Jordan (Brad) Schlangen, Abbie Massmann, and Ryan Massmann; 8 great-grandchildren: Rylan and Caden Penas, Silas and Sophie Gossy, Sutter, Maverick, and Vivienne Baker, and Riley Schmiess; his sister, Donna Sabrowsky of Alexandria a sister-in-law, Doris Massmann of Villard; along with nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Rudolph and Anna Massmann; his wife, Wilmeta; his daughter, Kathryn Schmiess; a grandson, Brandon Massmann; a brother, Burl; and Burl’s infant daughter, Kari Lee; and a brother-in-law, Otto Sabrowsky.
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