Howard Edward Hartness, of Centerville, died Sunday, Dec. 15, 2013.
He was born June 12, 1929 to Clifford and Dorothy Hartness in Oskaloosa. After graduating from Oskaloosa High School, Howard continued his love of sports by coaching and playing basketball and softball. He persuaded Pepsi Cola to sponsor two teams: a basketball team that won 90 out of 100 games and a softball team that won all three tournaments that they entered.
Howard served in the US Army during the Korean Conflict and was given an honorable discharge.
While living in Newton during the 1950s, Howard learned to play upright string bass. Max Bennett, also from Oskaloosa, was playing bass professionally with Stan Kenton at the time and encouraged Howard to pursue bass lessons. Howard pursued his love of music playing bass in several dance band combos. He was the leader of his own Big Band from 1978-1988, playing the Country Club and Elks Club circuit throughout Iowa and Missouri.
In 1958 Howard moved to Centerville, Iowa, working as a meat market manager for Thriftway-Safeway Grocery Store. He met his future wife, Mary Ann, whom he married in 1959.
Howard, an insurance agent, worked for Bankers Life/ Principal Financial Group for 42 years until he retired. Honors for excellence in selling included Million Dollar Round Table, Premier Club and Honor Council.
Howard was a member of the American Legion for 62 years. He was a member of the Federation of Musicians Union, Appanoose Country Club, Elks Club and Fourth Degree Knights of Columbus, as well as a long time member of Saint Mary’s Church of Centerville.
Surviving are his wife, Mary Ann; a daughter, Rita; a sister, Peggy; and two brothers, Tom and Kenneth.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and a sister, Betty.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Dec. 23 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Centerville with Fr. Bill Hubmann officiating. Visitation will be from 5-7 p.m. Sunday at the Lange Funeral Home and Crematory. A Rosary Service will be held at 7p.m. Sunday evening at Lange Funeral Home and Crematory. Burial will be in the Oakland Cemetery in Centerville.
A memorial has been established to St. Mary’s Catholic Church and may be left at Lange Funeral Home and Crematory.
Condolences may be left at www.langefh.com.Howard Edward Hartness, of Centerville, died Sunday, Dec. 15, 2013.