Donald Vagts

Donald Vagts


Donald Wayne “Andy” Vagts, 90, of West Union, Iowa, went to be with his Lord and Savior on Saturday, August 7, 2021.

Services will be held Saturday, August 28, at 11:00 a.m., at Redeemer Lutheran Church, West Union, with a visitation being held on Friday, August 27 at the church from 4-7 p.m.

Andy was born December 17, 1930, in Eldorado, Iowa to Lawrence and Mabel (Scheelhaase) Vagts. He attended a one-room school house in Eldorado until the 8th grade when he went on to graduate from North High School in West Union in 1948. After high school, he farmed with his father, Lawrence, and his uncle Ewald, and also worked for Melvin and Reynold Baumler in their logging and sawmill business, along with his brother Kenny. In 1951, he enlisted in the Air Force, where he served in Japan before being honorably discharged in December of 1954. After returning, he worked for Paul Benshoof at Treasure Acres in Blairsburg, Iowa, raising show hogs.

On November 27, 1955, he married the love of his life, Audrey Peterson, whom he had met on a blind date with Chuck and Delores Jacobsen. After a year of living in rural Blairsburg, they returned to farm with his dad, Lawrence, his uncle Ewald, brothers Kenny and John on the farm where the dairy is currently located and grandson, Andrew, now lives.  Eventually his son, Mark, and grandson, Andrew, would join him in the farming operation.  Andy loved nothing more than going ‘down home’ to work with his brothers, dad, and Uncle Ewald in Eldorado, but he also treasured working daily side by side with his son and grandson. He also loved to sing.  You could find him singing in the barn while doing chores, raking hay in the field, just about anywhere, and not quietly to himself, but with great gusto.  Even after his stroke, which affected his speech, he could still sing.  Most important to him was knowing Jesus as his personal Lord and Savior and we are thankful for the spiritual impact he had on our family. 

Andy was a charter member of Redeemer Lutheran Church and served on various church boards. He also received both the Fayette County Distinguished Dairymen and Pioneer Dairyman award and was a director of the local creamery boards that eventually merged into Foremost Farms. He served as a director of German Mutual Insurance for thirty years and was a member of both Farm Bureau and the Iowa Holstein Association.

Andy is survived by his wife of sixty-five years, three children, Mark (Joan) Vagts of West Union, IA, Marcia (Hoss) Foadian of Fort Worth, TX, and Marlys (Chuck) Bushman of Castalia, IA. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Erin (Conrad) Spangler, Andrew (Stephanie) Vagts, Laila (John) Wilcher, Parisa Foadian, Brodie (Kara) Bushman, Chelsea (Robbie) Atherton, Dacia (Jake) Reed, Fritz (Alyssa) Bushman, Ingrid Bushman, Zack (Rachael) Bushman, Bjorn Bushman, Isaac Bushman, and Rachael Bushman, twenty-two grandchildren, his brother, Gerald ‘John’ (Mary Ann) Vagts, sister, Irene (Elvin) Iben Anderson, sister in law, Evelyn Vagts, brother in law, Daryl Pape, and sister in law, Judy Ehler.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother, Kenny Vagts, his sister, Mary Pape, his great grandson, Caleb Ellis, and in-laws Lois and Virgil Monroe, Gerald ‘Jerry’ Ehler, Margie and Stanley Borseth, nephew Mike Vagts and niece Tammy Vagts.

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