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LaVern J. "Bum" Riniker

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1491 Main Street
(563) 582-3297
Dubuque, IA 52001
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Memories & Candles

“I work at Stonehill in the Activities department. Vern's favorite time to see me was when I was playing my guitar. He always loved to hear Johnny...Read More »
1 of 3 | Posted by: Rachel Heiderscheit - Dubuque, IA

“Always enjoyed visiting with Bum. Sorry for your loss. ”
2 of 3 | Posted by: Floyd and Rose Hammel - Dubuque, IA

“I regret that I will be unable to attend the wake for LaVern as I am committed to the Alzheimer's walk that morning and also have a committal service...Read More »
3 of 3 | Posted by: Bill Mauss - Dubuque, IA - Friend


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LaVern J. "Bum" Riniker, age 91, of Dubuque, and formerly of Balltown, was called home peacefully at 12:30 a.m. on Tuesday, September 4, 2018, at Stonehill Care Center, surrounded by his loving family. To honor Bum's life, funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m., on Saturday, September 8, 2018, at St. Francis of Assisi Church, 468 Balltown Road, with Rev. Noah J. Diehm officiating. To celebrate Bum's life, family and friends may visit from 9:30 a.m., until the time of services at 11:00 a.m., on Saturday, September 8, 2018, at St. Francis of Assisi Church, Balltown. Burial will be in the St. Francis Cemetery. Behr Funeral Home, 1491 Main Street, is in charge of arrangements.

Bum was born on February 24, 1927, in Waupeton, Iowa, son of Ambrose and Leona (Jaeger) Riniker.

Bum was born and raised on the family farm and proudly made it his lifelong passion until his daily chores had finally ended in 1991. Bum's faith was also a very important aspect of his life and upon his retirement from the responsibilities of daily farm life, he eventually moved into Balltown where he next devoted his time as a groundskeeper for St. Francis Parish for the next 10 years. Bum was a very active member of the community and was a long-time Farm Bureau member, as well as a member, and past president, of the Balltown Lions Club. In his free time, Bum enjoyed a quiet morning of hunting in the timber, a relaxing afternoon of baiting his hook on the water's edge, or even an evening of spending time visiting with family and friends at Breitbach's Country Dining while enjoying some of his favorite meals. Bum was a good and decent man who enjoyed a dance at Melody Mill as much as an honest days work back on the farm. He was truly respected by all who knew and loved him and the memories of Bum walking around with his dog by his side will definitely help carry us through the difficult days ahead. We will deeply miss our dear brother, uncle and friend, but take some comfort in knowing that he is now free of the health challenges he has faced these past months and that thankfully he is now able to be joyfully reunited with all of his loved ones whom have already been called home ahead of him.

Those left to cherish Bum's memory include

his sisters,
Shirley Noel, Dubuque, IA
and DiAnn (Herbert) Ott Jr., Peosta, IA;

and several nieces and nephews.

Bum was preceded in death by his parents; a sister Verna (Nick) Brimeyer; a niece, Cathy Noel; and a brother-in-law, Bill Noel.

In lieu of flowers, a LaVern J. Riniker memorial fund has been established which will be donated among his favorite charities.

Bum's family would like to thank Breitbach's Country Dining, and Diane and Pat Kunnert, for all of their personal visits over the years. They would also like to thank the nurses and staff at Stonehill, and Hospice of Dubuque, for the wonderful care and support they provided to Bum, and his family.