Dwayne Leo Hanson, 81, passed away Monday, May 18, 2020, in Nevada, Iowa, at the Story Medical Center – Senior Care. Dwayne will be remembered for his generous nature, incredible work ethic, playful personality and fondness for Diet Pepsi.
It’s fitting to say goodbye to Dwayne in May. Warmer weather signaled his favorite past times: hunting for morel mushrooms, planting his backyard garden and pulling his camper to a nearby park for a weekend of fishing, cribbage and meals with wife Belinda and whichever family members and friends could join them.
Dwayne was born April 27, 1939, in Delaware County, Iowa, the oldest of Leo and Helen (Miller) Hanson’s four children. Dwayne was a hardworking farm boy with a bit of an ornery streak. His favorite stories involved playing pranks and outrunning the police when he was a teenager. He once modified a car so the brake lights could be flipped off with a switch in the door, allowing him to disappear from sight while driving on dark country roads.
The one person who could keep him out of trouble was wife Belinda. Dwayne met her while working on her dad’s farm. He asked her on a date. She said no. He asked again. And again. In fact, he asked so many times Belinda’s dad took pity on him. He encouraged her to say yes so Dwayne would stop asking. His persistence paid off. They were married June 6, 1959, and enjoyed almost 60 years together before Belinda’s death in January 2018.
Dwayne devoted his career to agriculture – as a farmhand, a truck driver hauling milk for dairies, a welder building tractors for Allis-Chalmers and owner of his own grain bin company. He and Belinda moved their family to Nevada in the late 1970s to start V&H Construction, which still operates as a family business today. They made many lifelong friends and were active members of St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, volunteering their time and resources for decades.
One of Dwayne’s favorite roles was being a grandpa. He loved spoiling his 13 grandchildren – reading them books, sharing his M&Ms and cashews, and slipping them extra gas money from his wallet. He fed every grandchild their first bite of ice cream (whether their moms approved or not) and offered to take them on their first trip to the casino.
Dwayne was a good man. He helped anyone in need. He loved and supported his family. He was happiest in his recliner with an old Western playing on the TV, and a houseful of family and friends around him.
Survivors include his five children, Denise (Mark) Swanson of Cambridge, Sandra (Eric) Johnston of Nevada, Brian (Leslie) Hanson of Nevada, Shawn (Keesia) Hanson of Nevada, and Dustin (Jordan) Hanson of Chattanooga, TN; 13 grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; a brother, Keith Hanson of Boca Raton, FL; two sisters, Sharron McElmeel of Cedar Rapids and Joyce Hanson of Toddville; as well as many nieces, nephews and other extended family members.
A graveside service was at 11 a.m. Friday, May 22 at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cemetery in Nevada.
In lieu of flowers, the family encourages you to support the next generation of ag leaders by donating in Dwayne’s name to the Nevada FFA Chapter. Cards and donations may be sent to the family at P.O. Box 462, Nevada, IA 50201.
Rasmusson-Ryan Funeral Home in Nevada is handling arrangements. Condolences may be sent to the family at www.rasmussonfh.com.