August 6, 1927-April 2, 2019
BONAPARTE, Iowa —Richard Lee (Dick) Eis, 91, rural Bonaparte, Iowa, died Tuesday, April 2, 2019, at Klein Center, Burlington, Iowa. He was born August 6, 1927, in Muscatine County, Iowa, to Clarence and DeEtt (Rockafellow) Eis. He grew up on the family farm attending the one-room Melpine country school. He was active in 4-H, FFA, and drama, graduating from Muscatine High School in 1945. He was also active in the Sweetland Methodist Church. He attended Iowa State, Baker University and graduated from Iowa Wesleyan College in 1951.
June 10, 1951, he married Irma Elizabeth (Betty) Bement in Sioux Falls, S.D. Dick graduated from Garrett Biblical Institute in Evanston, Ill., in 1954. In 1956, he was ordained as an Elder in the Methodist church. He served churches in Bonaparte-Bentonsport, New Virginia-Medora-Liberty-Medford-Pleasant Hill, Milton-Cantril-Mount Sterling, Letts-Cranston, Radcliffe-Ellsworth-Evergreen, Osceola, Emmetsburg, and Maquoketa. After retiring in 1990, he served as an interim pastor for five churches. More recently he served as a part-time pastor at West Point, Sharon and Birmingham Presbyterian churches. He kept preaching until May 2018 when his health prevented him from continuing.
Dick was a long-time board member of the United Methodist Ministers Service Credit Union. He served on numerous Iowa Annual Conference committees and boards. He also had a deep commitment to social justice. Many remember him as a leader at church camps, work trips, and as a participant in the Van Buren County ministry and its Last Supper dramatization.
In 1964, Dick and Betty purchased a small acreage near Bonaparte. They spent many family vacations there, moving in permanently in 1990. Dick enjoyed reading the Muscatine Journal, the Des Moines Register, over 20 magazines and many westerns. He also enjoyed auctions, Bible study groups, gardening and mowing the ever-increasing yard. Visits from family and friends were especially treasured.
He is survived by his wife, Betty; children, Keith (Nancy) Eis, Beth (Ben) Campney, Karen Eis and Carol Eis, all of Des Moines, and Ann (Steve) Mallams of Mount Union; seven grandchildren, Erica Eis, Austin Eis, Carla (Eric) Olson, Dan Sherman, Julie (Mitch) Brown, Jessica (Seth) Streeter and Jacob Mallams; six great-grandchildren; his two sisters, Alice (Carroll) Parks of Mount Pleasant and Beverly Sage of Waterloo; nieces and nephews, other relatives and many friends.
Visitation will be Sunday, April 7, from 2-4 p.m. at Pedrick Funeral Home, Keosauqua, Iowa. The funeral will be Monday, April 8, at 10:30 a.m. at the Bonaparte United Church with lunch following. Committal will April 9 at 11 a.m. at Parr Cemetery near Muscatine, Iowa.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to Bonaparte United Church, Bidwell Riverside Center, or a church of your choice.