Lester Pierce Green was born on March 19, 1922 in Cherokee, the son of Lester and Lillian (Pierce) Green. He graduated from Wilson High School in 1941. He attended Illinois Central Trade School in Waterloo, Iowa from 1941 - 1942. In October, 1942, Pierce joined the United States Marines. He was trained as a Marine Paratrooper and served in the South Pacific during WWII. After returning from the war, he attended Morningside College for two years. From 1946 - 1950, Pierce operated Mobil Service Station in Cherokee. He married Idella Johnson on June 19, 1947 in Cherokee. From 1950 - 1959, he owned and operated the Standard Oil Station in Cherokee. In 1959, Pierce and his brother, Don purchased the Culligan Soft Water business in Cherokee. He owned and operated the business until retirement in 1985.
Pierce served on the Cherokee Adult Education Board. He also served on the Cherokee School Board for 9 years. He was a member of the Iowa Water Association, Kiwanis, American Legion, VFW, and the Marine Paratrooper Survivors Organization. Pierce was a member of the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church.
Pierce was a mechanic and he was a genius at fixing things. He collected tools and materials that sometimes seemed esoteric until they were used to repair this leaky pipe or that balky appliance. He ran track as a youth and for many years enjoyed that sport at the Drake Relays. He loved picnics along the river south of Cherokee and at Martins Access and he brought the frisbee to Cherokee in 1959, long before that item became popular. He was a stern taskmaster in his businesses, always committed to providing the best service possible to his customers but, on his own time, he was the most congenial and gregarious person, never meeting a stranger he didn't like. He regaled friends and family with stories that, more often than not, began somewhere in the middle and challenged the listener to figure out where he was headed. He loved golf and was a fixture at the Cherokee Country Club, not only on the links but also insuring the pool remained perfectly pristine for club members. Pierce was a lifetime Cherokean and never wanted to live anywhere else. He was proud of his community and, while he traveled all over the country, he always returned home to the family and town he loved.
Pierce was preceded in death by his wife, Idella in 2004, his parents, Lester and Lillian Green, and one sister, Virginia Crocker.
Pierce is survived by his son, Tom Green and his wife, Nancy, of West Des Moines; daughter, Susan Julius and her husband, Alan, of Cherokee; grandchildren: Emily Shuberg and her husband, Ben of Cherokee; David Julius and his wife, Megan of Aurelia; Great Grandchildren: Adeline, Abram, and Clara Shuberg and Amelia Julius; brother, Don Green and his wife, Delores of Cherokee; sister-in-law, Edith Ullmann of Johnstown, CO. and many nieces and nephews.
Pierce was committed to the trades and provided many opportunities to a variety of young people in his businesses. He also expressed this commitment through his service on the Cherokee School Board. Recognizing this commitment, a Scholarship in Career and Technical Education is being established in Pierce's name. Memorials will be directed to this Scholarship.
A memorial mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 2017, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Cherokee, Iowa.
Father Dan Guenther
A public gathering will be held from 3:00-7:00 p.m. Friday, February 17, 2017, with the family present from 5:30-7:00 p.m. at the Greenwood-Schubert Funeral Home in Cherokee. There will be a 7:00 p.m. scripture service Friday at the funeral home.
Oak Hill Cemetery
At a later date.