Merlin Andrew Ideker was born Jan. 5, 1922, at New Ulm, Minn., the son of Elmer and Gertrude (Casper) Ideker. He lived in Balaton, Minn., until he was 9 years old, at which time he moved with his parents to the Hinton area. During World War II, Merlin served his country with the U.S. Army and participated in operations at the Battle of the Bulge. Following his honorable discharge from the Army he moved to West Los Angeles, Calif., where he worked with his father operating a Signal service station for many years.
He married Josie LaBarbera in 1958. Josie died in 1998.
Merlin married Margaret "Maggie" (Gotto) Singer June 24, 2001, in Las Vegas, Nev.
They moved back from California to Le Mars in 2008.
Merlin was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church, rural Hinton.
He enjoyed ocean cruises, trips to Vegas, and playing 31. He was an avid Los Angeles Angels fan.
Survivors include his wife, Maggie Ideker of Le Mars; his aunt, Helen Robinson of Sioux City; eight stepsons: Paul Ideker, Marion (Eileen) LaBarbera, and Ronnie (C'Ann) LaBarbera, all of California, Ken (Linda) Singer of Chisago City, Minn., Dan (Jo Ann) Singer of Le Mars, Gary (Sherry) Singer of Katy, Texas, Randy Singer of Le Mars, and Curt (Lori) Singer of Harrisburg, S.D.
He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Donald Ideker; and two stepsons: Joe LaBarbera and Richard M. Singer.
Funeral services will be 2 p.m. Saturday at Trinity Lutheran Church, rural Hinton, with the Rev. Steven Stoll officiating. Burial will be in the church cemetery. Visitation will begin at 5:30 p.m. today (Friday) at Trinity Lutheran Church, rural Hinton, where there will be a prayer service at 7 p.m. Arrangements are with the Carlsen-Feuerstein Funeral Home in Le Mars.
Pallbearers will be Ken Singer, Dan Singer, Gary Singer, Curt Singer, Ron Kounkel, and Denny Rieken. Honorary pallbearer will be Randy Singer.
Expressions of sympathy may be extended to the family through www.carlsenfuneralhome.com.