Melvin Edward Gustafson was born on a farm in Sac County, Iowa on May 19, 1930, the son of Richard and Minnie Nelson Gustafson. He grew up in the Kiron area, and attended school there and was graduated from the Kiron High School with the class of 1947. Melvin started working as a teenager for Wallace Larson at the Hardware and Electric Store. On September 8, 1951, Melvin was united in marriage to Emeline Schultz at the Evangelical Free Church in Kiron. Their union was blessed with three children; Rick, Joel and Cindy. They made their home in Kiron. In 1855 Melvin and Emeline ran a Sundries store in Kiron. In 1957 Melvin went to work in Schleswig as a salesman for Hollander Motors until 1986, and also delivered bundles of the Sioux City Journal around to various towns during 18 of those 29 years. In 1986 Melvin went to work for Johnson Motors in Denison where he remained until his retirement on October 1, 1996.
Melvin accepted Christ as his savior as a teenager. He was baptized at Bethel Lutheran Church in Kiron on July 20, 1982. He was an active church member and served on the church council. Melvin was in the National Guard for over 9 years and served on flood duty at Council Bluffs in 1950. He was also very active in his community serving as Mayor of Kiron from January 1968-1973 and again from 1976-1983. He was on the Fire Department for over 20 years and served as Fire Chief for a time. He served as President of the Community Club, and also served on the Crawford County Conservation Board. Melvin enjoyed golfing and bowling in his leisure time. Melvin died at the Crawford County Memorial Hospital on Thursday morning, September 25, 1997. At the time of his death he had attained the age of 67 years, 4 months, and 6 days. Melvin was preceded in death by his parents.
Melvin was a loving husband, father, and grandfather. Those left to cherish his memory in their hearts include his wife, Emeline of Kiron, Iowa; two sons and their wives, Rick and Vicki Gustafson of Ogden, Iowa, Joel and Kim Gustafson of Denison, Iowa and one daughter Cindy Buck and her husband Tracy of Carroll, Iowa; 10 grandchildren; one brother Vernon Gustafson and his wife DeArliss of Denison, Iowa and one sister MayDelle Hoefling and her husband John of Rockford, Illinois, other relatives and a host of friends.
Funeral Services were held 2:00 p.m., Monday, September 29, 1997 at the Bethel Lutheran Church in Kiron, Iowa with Rev. Victor N. Johnson officiating. Music for the service was provided by Hanford Ecklund singing "In Times Like These We Need A Savior", "Rock Of Ages" and "How Great Thou Art" with the congregation "What A Friend We Have In Jesus" with Margaret Ann Buller serving as organist. Casket bearers included Phil Didler, Wayne Neumann, Dennis Wellsandt, Gerald Langholdt, Roland Talcott, and Bob Crampton. Burial was in the Kiron Cemetery at Kiron, Iowa.
The Pfannebecker Funeral Home in Denison was in charge of the arrangements.