Max Beavers, 95, longtime Mt. Pleasant businessman and civic leader, passed away Sunday, November 06, 2016, at the Henry County Health Center.
Visitation will begin after 12 noon on Tuesday, November 8th at the Olson-Powell Memorial Chapel, where the family will greet friends from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. that evening. A Scripture service will follow at 7:00 p.m. at the Memorial Chapel. The funeral mass will be held at 10:00 a.m., on Wednesday, November 9th at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church, with the Rev. Brian Shepley, celebrant. Interment will be in St. Alphonsus Catholic Cemetery with full military rites provided by the Henry County Honor Guard. Gifts of love and friendship may be given to St. Alphonsus Catholic Church or the Van Vorhies Haus in his memory. On-line condolences may be directed to www.olsonpowell.com.
Max was born on February 13, 1921, in West Grove (Bloomfield), IA, the 6th of 9 children of Guy and Stella (Spicer) Beavers. The family lived on farms in several southern Iowa communities, raising horses and cows and living off the land, as many did during the depression years. Max was a hard worker, even at an early age. Stella died when Max was thirteen years old and the family had settled near Mt. Pleasant. The high school football team was short on players, so during his sophomore year, Max, at 135 pounds, became a tough and successful lineman on the team. Max graduated as an excellent student from Mt. Pleasant High School in 1939.
One of his early jobs was learning to cut meat from a local butcher. He held meat cutter jobs in Mt. Pleasant, Ottumwa and West Point, IA. It was in West Point in 1940, where he met Clementine A. Winnike. World War II beckoned, and on December 28, 1942, Max entered the Army. It was during a temporary leave of duty, when Max was traveling by train from the west coast, that he and “Clemmy” got married on a Wednesday, October 13, 1943. Max had to rejoin his unit right away on the west coast. He departed San Francisco, CA via ship, on December 28, 1943, bound for Australia, before eventually landing in New Guinea and the Philippines. During Max’s break times, he developed into quite the card player, saving enough money for a down payment on his first grocery store, after he returned from the service. Max and his unit returned, after the armistice was signed with Japan, by sailing under the Golden Gate Bridge on December 25, 1945.
Max and Clemmy not only started a long running grocery business in Mt. Pleasant after the war, but also started their family, which grew to 8 children, plus one stillborn. Max served 2 terms on the Mt. Pleasant City Council, was a member and served on the boards of the American Legion and VFW; was a lifetime member of St. Alphonsus Catholic Church, the Knights of Columbus, and the Jaycees. Max was an avid golfer and was a “chain gang” member during his sons football years. Clemmy and daughter Karol died in 1978. Max married Catherine Jean (Keefe) on September 26, 1981. In his retirement years, Max and Jean enjoyed traveling to Arizona and Texas.
Along with his second wife, Jean, Max is survived by seven children, Ron (Joann) Beavers, Rick (Rita Lohman) Beavers, Randy (Karly) Beavers, Kathy (Ted) Aicher, Rob (Gayle) Beavers, Kim (Jim) Steffes, and Kerry (Wendel) Luko; four step-children, Jim Keefe, Elaine (Dave) Brown, Dennis Keefe, and Teresa O’Meara; three siblings, Gerald (Arlene) Beavers, Mansel (Evelyn) Beavers, and Phyllis Johnson; a brother-in-law, Lee Winnike; and two sisters-in-law, Lucene Gintz and Mary Cosselman. He is also survived by 15 grandchildren; 2 step grandchildren; 27 great-grandchildren; and four step-great-grandchildren; as well as, many nieces and nephews.
Max was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Clementine; a daughter Karol Beavers; a stillborn son, Terrence Beavers; a great-grandson, Adrien Aicher; four brothers, Basil Beavers, Paul Beavers, Malcolm Beavers, and Merwyn Beavers; and a sister, Madelyn Cooper.