Robert Emerson Tjaden, age 58 of rural Gilmore City, passed away Monday, July 16, 2007, in an accident near Woolstock, Iowa.

Robert was born June 15, 1949, in Washington, Illinois. He was the son of Emerson and Mildred (Onnen) Tjaden and attended elementary school in Palmer and graduated from Rolfe High School in 1967. He then attended Iowa State University for two years until he was drafted into the Army in 1969. He served at Fort Carson, Colorado for two years. On September 1, 1973, Robert married Janis Ferguson in Havelock. He farmed with his father, Emerson, for many years, raising hogs and sheep. In the 1990s, Robert began growing greenhouse tomatoes and other vegetables and sold his produce at many local farmer's markets including the "Tomato Bus," well-known in Pocahontas. Most recently, he owned his own truck and trailer, hauling feed for Gold-Eagle Coop, whose central office is in Goldfield.

Robert also enjoyed volunteering his time helping others. He was a charter member and an elder at Faith Lutheran Church near Palmer and over many years was active in ministries such as church council, worship leader, Sunday School, and youth group. He also frequently led nursing home services in the area. He loved spending time with his children and grandchildren and will be greatly missed.

Robert's father Emerson Tjaden died on May 7, 2007. Robert's survivors include his wife, Janis of Gilmore City; three sons, Todd (Katie) and their children, Thomas and Allison of Ames; Brian (Nicole) and their son, Cade of Waukee; and Adam of Churdan; his mother, Mildred Tjaden of Gilmore City; three brothers, James (Gloria) Tjaden of Badger; Larry (Jane) Tjaden of Cedar Rapids and Bill Tjaden of Laurel, Nebraska; and many nieces and nephews.

Memorial services were at the Faith Lutheran Church of Palmer on July 19, 2007, with Paul Abens officiating, Janet Dornath as organist, and Lance Meyerink as vocalist. Interment was at the Clinton-Garfield Cemetery near Rolfe. The flag presentation was by the American Legion Post #25 of Rolfe.