Bessie Fern Langer, 105

January 30, 1918 - August 30, 2023

Bessie Fern Langer, the daughter of Roscoe A. and Lillian K. (Matthiessen) Buck, was born on January 30, 1918, near Harlan, Iowa. She attended country school near Panama, Iowa, and graduated from Shelby (Iowa) High School in 1936.  On June 21, 1937, Bessie married LeRoy J. Langer in Shelby, and the couple made their home in Independence, Missouri, for many years. Bessie worked as an optometric assistant in nearby Raytown, Missouri, until her retirement in 1980.
LeRoy died on August 6, 1992, in Independence, and in the fall of 1993, Bessie moved back to Harlan. In 2001, she relocated to Council Bluffs, Iowa, where she enjoyed shopping and walking in area malls. She often traveled to Harlan to visit family, and had even renewed her driver’s license as recently as 2022.
Bessie was a member of the Myrtue Medical Center Auxiliary. She loved to read and liked to fish in the Ozarks. Bessie especially treasured spending time with her family and truly enjoyed entertaining friends in her home.
Bessie F. Langer died on Wednesday, August 30, 2023, at the Hansen House in Harlan, Iowa. She was blessed to enjoy 105 years and seven months of life.
Bessie was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, LeRoy J. Langer; three brothers, Lowell Buck, Roscoe Buck, and Robert Buck; and four sisters, Veta Bock, Mildred Whannell, Lois Mortensen, and Alta Hamilton. She will be lovingly remembered by three sisters, Vera Raasch of Harlan, Iowa, Edna Barton of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Retha Buck of New York, New York; many nieces and nephews; and other relatives and friends.
The graveside service and burial were held on Saturday, September 2, 2023, at the Harlan Cemetery in Harlan, Iowa, with Andrew Brown officiating. Bessie’s loving family served as casket bearers. The Burmeister-Johannsen Funeral Home, Inc., in Harlan, Iowa, assisted the family with arrangements. Condolences may be left online at




Harlan Newspapers

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