Earl Michael Hentges was born May 30, 1929, in Le Mars, the son of Michael E. "M.E." and Anna A. (Foley) Hentges. "Shorty" as he was known to family and friends attended and graduated from St. Joseph Catholic High School in Le Mars in 1947.
Shorty worked for a few years on a farm before beginning his career with Plymouth CO-OP in 1952 as a fuel delivery driver upon the retirement of his father.
Shorty was united in marriage to Dorothy Christmann Sept. 14, 1960, at Sioux Falls, S.D. He worked for the CO-OP until September of 1988 when Hentges Oil was established with his son Mark. Shorty continued to be active in the business until 2007.
Shorty was a member of St. James Catholic Church where he enjoyed serving as an usher for many years.
As a young man, Shorty was a past board member of the Jaycees in Le Mars and was involved with Boy Scouts. He also enjoyed watching NASCAR, playing cards, and coffee time at the Truck Stop with his friends. He had also been a past officer of the Le Mars Eagle's Club.
Shorty's greatest pride was his family.
Survivors include five children: Carolyn VanderMeer and her husband, Jim, of Fairfield, Ohio, Jane Ream and her husband, Don, of Craig, Mark Hentges and his special friend, Beth Seggerman, of Le Mars, Lori Ensminger, of Hinton, and Crystal Augustine and her husband, Larry, of Urbandale; 14 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren; three sisters, Marjorie Schmid, of Le Mars, Mary Hentges, of Sherman Oaks, Calif., and Lois Armendarez and her husband, Louie, of Sun Valley, Calif.; a brother-in-law, Clarence Haverkamp, of Iowa City; a daughter-in-law, Carla Hentges, of Le Mars; several nieces and nephews; and many friends.
Shorty was preceded in death by his parents, M.E. and Anna Hentges; his wife, Dorothy in 1996; three brothers, Linus, Harold and his wife Marie, and Richard Hentges; and a sister, Helen Haverkamp.
Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at St. James Catholic Church in Le Mars with the Rev. Paul Eisele officiating. Interment will be at Calvary Cemetery in Le Mars. Visitation will be after 3 p.m. Tuesday, at the Carlsen-Feuerstein Funeral Home in Le Mars with a 4 p.m. parish Rosary followed by a 7 p.m. vigil wake service Tuesday evening at the funeral home. Visitation will continue Wednesday morning at the church from 9:30 a.m. until service time.
Pallbearers will be Jordan Augustine, Logan Augustine, Eric Hentges, Gene Harms, Ken Langel, and Jim Burnett. Honorary casketbearers will be his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Expressions of sympathy may be extended to the family through www.carlsenfuneralhome.com.