Joseph “Joe” Leo Kohles, 71

January 14, 1952 - April 20, 2023

  Joseph “Joe” Leo Kohles was born to Delbert and Celestine “Sally” (Arkfeld) Kohles on January 14, 1952 in Harlan, Iowa. He attended St. Mary’s Catholic School in Panama, Iowa until the age of 12 when he moved with his parents and four youngest siblings to San Bruno, CA.
In California, he stayed busy with baseball and his paper route. He regularly attended San Francisco Giants baseball games and hitchhiked to the golf course to work on his swing. Joe’s years in California highlighted his adventurous spirit.
He was a foreman for Davey Tree line clearing crews in San Bruno. They had a great softball team, which also included his brothers Mike and Ron.  During one game he threw out his shoulder which required surgery. His family and friends chipped in and bought him an airline ticket so he could recuperate in Panama, IA.  While in Panama, he met his future wife at a softball tournament.
On April 1, 1978 Joe married Janet Fuhs at St. Mary’s Parish in Portsmouth, Iowa.  Three children Jackie, Jeff, and John, were born to this union. They raised their children in Ralston, Nebraska where they attended St. Gerald’s Parish. In 2004, they moved to Janet’s childhood home near Portsmouth, Iowa.
Joe was a member of the Teamster’s Union, driving for various trucking companies over 30 years.  He commuted the last 5 years until he retired in 2009.
Joe served on the Shelby County Golf Board and also managed the clubhouse for two years. He enjoyed many rounds of golf and bowling during his retirement years.
Joe celebrated 45 years of marriage to the love of his life Janet on April 1st this year. He passed away on April 20, 2023 at the age of 71 years, 3 months and 6 days.   He is preceded in death by his parents Delbert and Sally Kohles, his brothers Gary, Jerome (Speed), and Ron, and brother-in-law Alf Wingert.
He is survived by his wife Janet Kohles of Panama; children Jackie (Steve) Anderson of Omaha, Nebraska, Jeff (Meghan) Kohles of Omaha, Nebraska and John (Katy) Kohles of Lincoln, Nebraska; nine grandchildren Jadyn and Kohl Anderson; Kaia, Henry and Hattie Kohles; Jack, Will, Leo and Molly Kohles; his brother Michael (Jan) Kohles of Folsom, CA; sisters, Karen Wingert of Panama, IA, Carol (Phil) Wegner of Panama, IA, Jo Ann (Jay) Townsend of Wawa, PA; sisters-in-law Beverly Kohles of Portsmouth, IA, Connie Kohles of Harlan, IA and Meg Kohles-Dunlop of Panama, IA; dozens of nieces and nephews, and countless other family members and friends.
A 10:30 AM Mass of Christian burial was officiated by Rev. Vince Ohlinger and Concelebrated by Rev. Michael Antoh at St. Mary Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church in Portsmouth, Iowa on Monday, April 24, 2023. Jadyn Anderson , Kohle Anderson, Kaia Kohles,  Henry Kohles , Hattie Kohles, Jack Kohles, Will Kohles, Leo Kohles, and Molly Kohles served as honorary casket bearers. An inurnment will be held at a later date at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Portsmouth, Iowa.
Pauley Jones Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.



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