Dale Turnmire, 92

July 20, 1931 - 
Sept. 16, 2023
CRESCO - Dale Arthur Turnmire, 92 of Cresco, Iowa passed away on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2023 at the Evans Memorial Home in Cresco.  Funeral services will be held on Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023 at 11 a.m. at the Cresco United Methodist Church in Cresco, Iowa.  
Friends may call from 4-7 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023 at the Cresco United Methodist Church as well as one hour prior to services. Burial will take place at Oak Lawn Cemetery in Cresco. Lindstrom Funeral Home is handling the arrangements. 
Dale Arthur Turnmire was born in Spring Valley, Minnesota on July 20, 1931, to Clark and Luverne Turnmire.  He graduated from Cresco High School in 1949 and received a degree in Business Management from the University of Iowa in 1954. Dale married Mary Ellen Daly on January 3, 1953. 
 After graduation, Dale and Mary Ellen returned to Cresco to begin their life together.  There, Dale joined his father, Clark, in the day-to-day operations of Puritan Ice Cream and Meat Processing Company. Together they began truck routes servicing area restaurants and bars with Puritan meat, sausage and ice cream products.  In the early 1970s, Dale’s Fine Meat Market opened, providing Cresco shoppers with a fresh meat counter and limited frozen meats and grocery products.  
During his many years in the meat industry, Dale served as Executive Director for the Iowa Meat Processors Association. In that capacity, Dale testified numerous times before state and national legislative committees and the Department of Agriculture regarding meat inspection regulations.  For his many efforts, he received the National Achievement Award from the American Association of Meat Processors, as well as the Distinguished Service Award from the Iowa Meat Processors Association.  
 For over 40 years, Dale was involved in countless projects and activities to promote the Cresco community.  His philosophy was that he would work hard and lend his support to anything that would benefit the area.  His efforts supported, among others, the Cresco Fitness Center, Howard-Winneshiek School, The Cresco Opera House and local medical services.  Topping his list of numerous accomplishments were the recruitment of the Donaldson Company plant to Cresco in the 1960s and the relocation of Featherlite Inc. headquarters from Minnesota to Cresco/Davis Corners. 
 During the 1980s and into the 1990s, he served as the director of the Cresco Chamber of Commerce, as well as director of the Cresco Industrial Development Corp., serving as its President from 1978-1979.  He was a volunteer for ACDI-VOCA, a federal overseas volunteer project, from 1993 to 2005.  He served as a meat specialist assigned to more than 23 meatpacking plants and organizations in former Soviet Union countries.  His experience benefitted plants in Lithuania, Estonia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Mongolia, Siberia, Russia and Armenia.   
 Dale’s last project for the community involved spearheading the Streetscape Project, which has resulted in the installation of more than 40 bronze statues in Cresco and Howard County on behalf of donors.  This effort required identifying and coordinating with the companies that produces the statues, create the bases and provide upkeep for the statues.   
 Dale was not all work and no play.  He enjoyed bird hunting, stock car racing, Jaguar restoration, motorcycling and playing golf. He was also a licensed pilot.   
 And to quote him, “I’ve had a great life!”  
 Dale is survived by this wife of 70 years Mary Ellen, daughters Miekeleen Hart (Jim), Christina Luebe (Doug) and son Kirk; step-son Ted ( Jenny) Koerth, step-daughter Amanda (Ian) Areces; 4 grandchildren Ben Brickett, Lauren Brickett, Sam Brickett and Nathan Turnmire, and 5 step-grandchildren Samantha and Alexandra Koerth, Edward, Eleanor and Ellis Areces.  
 He was preceded in death by his parents, Clark and Luverne Turnmire; a stillborn son; his in-laws Thomas and Ellen Daly; brother-in-law Jim Daly and sister-in-law Bev Daly.   
 In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Cresco Chamber of Commerce, CRICCET Statue Fund, the CUSB-CRICCET Statue Fund or the Cresco Fitness Center.

Cresco Times

Phone: 563-547-3601
Fax: 563-547-4602

Cresco TPD
214 N. Elm Street
Cresco, IA 52136

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