Cover photo for Leona E. Ricke's Obituary
Leona E. Ricke Profile Photo
1936 Leona 2023

Leona E. Ricke

July 5, 1936 — April 1, 2023


Leona E. Ricke

Sheldon, Iowa

            Funeral services for Leona E. Ricke, age 86, of Sheldon who passed away on Saturday, April 1, 2023, at Sanford Sheldon Medical Center.  Her graveside service will be 10:30 A.M. on Saturday, April 8, 2023, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Cemetery in Sheldon with Father Siby Punnoose ~ officiating.

            Visitation with family present will be from 5 – 7 P.M. on Friday, April 7, 2023, with a Rosary by St. Patrick’s Guild at 7 P.M. all at the Vander Ploeg Funeral Home in Sheldon.

 Online condolences may be made to the Family at






July 5,1936

Paullina, Iowa


April 1, 2023

Sheldon, Iowa



Rosary Service 7:00P.M. Friday April 7, 2023

Recited by St. Patrick Church Guild



10:30 A.M. Saturday, April 8, 2023

St. Patrick Catholic Cemetery ~ Sheldon, Iowa;

Father Siby Punnoose ~ Officiating



Julie Heimes                                   Melanie Powell

Jenn Neisteadt                                       Kelly Ricke

Jill Jung                                                Kaitlin Ricke

Alyssa Ricke


Jacob Ricke                                      Justin Helmers

Lucas Helmers                              Hunter Warntjes

Jeff Schueller                                   Jim Burmakow



St. Patrick Catholic Cemetery

Sheldon, Iowa


After the graveside service relatives and friends are invited to join the family in the fellowship hall of the

St. Patrick Catholic Church in Sheldon.


Arrangements under the care of the

Vander Ploeg Funeral Home; Sheldon, Iowa

    Leona Elizabeth Ricke the daughter of Otto and Viola (Schueller) Kruse was born July 5, 1936 on her parent’s farm near Paullina, Iowa. She received her education in O’Brien County country school and later graduated from Paullina High School in 1954. She was united in marriage to Vernon Henry Ricke on July 24, 1956 at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Primghar, Iowa. They made their home on a farm north of Paullina, Iowa and farmed until Vernon’s retirement in 1978 and they moved to Sheldon. Leona was employed at Aalfs Manufacturing for twenty years and later at Village Northwest in Sheldon for 12 years before her retirement at the age of 75. Vernon preceded her in death on December 17, 2015 in Sheldon. Leona remained in the family home. She passed away on Saturday, April 1, 2023 at the Sanford Medical Center reaching the age of 86 years eight months and twenty-six days.

     She was a member of St. Patrick’s Church in Sheldon and had played the organ at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Primghar. She enjoyed spending time with her family, and was also concerned about everyone’s wellbeing. She was also known for her cooking, baking, crocheting and knitting many blankets and doilies. She played the accordion and was in a band “Hired Hands” with her dad and two sisters and in later years played her accordion for different events.

     Leona is survived by her children, Theresa Helmers of Sibley, Iowa; Duane (Pam) Ricke of Sioux Falls, South Dakota; Kevin (Sue) Ricke of Sac City, Iowa; Robbie (Heath) Warntjes of Boyden, Iowa; 11 grandchildren Julie (Allan) Heimes; Lucas (Tonya) Helmers; Justin Helmers; Melanie (Brandon) Powell; Jenn (Eric) Neisteadt; Kelly Ricke; Jill (Dustin) Jung; Kaitlin Ricke; Jacob Ricke; Alyssa Ricke and Hunter Warntjes; 6 great grandchildren Abbie, Brooklyn and Carter Helmers; Mecca, Emory and Bekhom Powell; one sister, Irene Schueller of Dubuque, Iowa also many other relatives and friends.

     She was preceded in death by her husband, one daughter, Sharon Marie Ricke on May 21, 2013; parents and one sister, Mary Burmakow Whited.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Leona E. Ricke, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, April 7, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Vander Ploeg Funeral Home - Sheldon

724 Sixth Avenue, Sheldon, IA 51201

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Graveside Service

Saturday, April 8, 2023

10:30 - 10:45 am (Central time)

St. Patrick's Catholic Cemetery

1988 E. 9th St., Sheldon, IA 51201

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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