Gerald L. “Joe” Young, age 86, of Watertown, SD, formerly Henry, SD, passed away on Sunday, August 3, 2014, at the hospital in Watertown. Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, August 7, 2014, at St. Martin’s Lutheran Church in Watertown. Rev. Paul Janke will officiate. Music will be provided by Carol Janke as organist with Jonathon Niemi as soloist. The family is requested to meet at the church on Thursday by 10:00 a.m. for a prayer service.
Visitation will be at the Crawford Funeral Chapel in Watertown on Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. and prior to services at the church on Thursday.
Burial will be at Mt. Hope Cemetery in Watertown. Military graveside honors will be conducted by Codington County Post #17 of the American Legion and the Frank H. Adams Post #750 of the Veterans of Foreign Wars both of Watertown and the Funeral Honors Team of the SD Army National Guard. Honorary pallbearers will be former employees of Loken’s Sales Pavillion and members of Young’s fastpitch softball teams. Active pallbearers will be: Travis Young, Jason Young, Dan Coffey, Ryan Foreman, Norman Luken and Paul Luken.
Memorials may also be directed to the South Dakota Amateur Softball Hall of Fame at PO Box 63 Watertown, SD 57201.
Joe was born on July 4, 1928, at Garden City, SD, to Roy and Iva (Hartley) Young. He attended country school near Garden City. Joe worked on the railroad and on a farm near Garden City. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1951 and served during the Korean War. Joe was honorably discharged in 1953 and moved to Watertown.
On October 30, 1954, Joe married Elsie Luken at St. Martin’s Lutheran Church in Watertown. In 1959, the couple purchased ‘212 Wide Spot’ and owned and operated the business for 13 years. They started Joe Young Trucking in 1962 and Joe also worked at Loken’s for 46 years. Joe retired in 2006.
He was a member of St. Martin’s Lutheran Church. Joe was also a member of the American Legion since 1953 and was a lifetime member of the V.F.W. He received the ‘Distinguished Service’ award from the SD State Softball Association Hall of Fame. Joe enjoyed fishing, hunting, softball games and watching and feeding the birds. He loved spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Joe is survived by his wife, Elsie, of Watertown; one son, Gary (Kathy) Young, of Watertown; four grandchildren: Travis (Jodie) Young, Jason (Tricia) Young, Kristin (Dan) Coffey and Lisa (Ryan) Foreman; six great-grandchildren: Parker, Sydnie, Haylie and Trever Young, Alli Foreman and Irelyn Young; one brother, Marvin Young, of Seattle, WA; two sisters, Treva Headley of Clark, SD, and his twin sister, Geraldine “Toot” (Milton) Persoon, of Madison, SD.
He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Jim and Glen; and two sisters, Lois and Lola.