Merlin was born March 2, 1923, on the family farm in Marion Township, Plymouth County, Iowa, the son of L.H. and Wilhelmina (Wiebke) Mohning. He graduated from Le Mars High School, in Le Mars, in 1941.
He married Anna Margaret Rose Kuttler on June 22, 1947, and they celebrated 65 years of marriage this past June. Together, Merlin and Marge raised five children.
Merlin served in the U.S. Navy during World War II and served on the Le Mars City Council for 10 years. He was especially proud of the library building project which was accomplished during his tenure on the city council.
He was a charter member of the Le Mars Sertoma Service Club.
Merlin was a longtime owner of Le Mars Hatchery & Feed until he sold the business in 1982 and retired to Hotchkiss, Colo. During their retirement in Colorado, Merlin spent time as custodian at the Paonia High School and they maintained a 10 acre orchard near Hotchkiss.
He was also a lifetime member of the Wilson Head American Legion Post #97, Paonia, Colo.
Merlin was a member of St. John's Lutheran Church, Le Mars, and Immanuel Lutheran Church, Paonia, Colo.
He was an avid bowler, competing in state bowling tournament in his 80s. He frequently posted better marks than those much younger than he. Merlin enjoyed many hours hunting, fishing and golfing with family and friends. He also was fond of reading a good book.
Merlin is survived by his wife, Marge, his children, Evelyn (Bill) Roseberry, Hotchkiss, Colo., Don (Sue) Mohning, Salix, Janet (Don) Murray, Rapid City, S.D., Lois (Rudy) Rozman, Crested Butte, Colo., and Paul (Maxine) Mohning, Pascagoula, Miss.; eight grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, six step-grandchildren, 11 step-great-grandchildren, two brothers, Louis and Ray; two sisters, Alverna Lowery and Esther Sjoboken.
He was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters; and two brothers.
A memorial service was at 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, at St. John's Lutheran Church in Le Mars, with the Rev. Gary Landsness officiating. Burial followed at Resthaven Memory Gardens in Le Mars. There was one hour of visitation at the church prior to the memorial service on Saturday. The Mauer - Johnson Funeral Home in Le Mars is assisting Merlin's family with arrangements.
Memorials may be made to Hospice and Palliative Care of Western Colorado, or North Fork Ambulance Service.
Expressions of sympathy may be directed through www.mauerjohnsonfh.com.