John Robey

  • Died: February 20, 2013
  • Location: Brooklyn, Iowa

Smith Funeral Home

1103 Broad Street
P.O. Box 368
Grinnell, IA 50112
Tel. (641) 236-3134

Tribute & Message From The Family

John Robey, age 69, of Brooklyn, Iowa, died on Wednesday, February 20, 2013, at his home with his family by his side.

A funeral service will be held 11:00 a.m., Monday, February 25, 2013, at the Madison Church of Christ near Brooklyn with the Rev. Dennis Smith officiating. Pallbearers are Larry Vogel, Phil Heishman, Dale VanTomme, Kirk Berry, Kole Berry, Nathan Davis-Loucks, Aaron Robey, and Chase Bloethe. Honorary bearers are Glen Berry, Dale Douglas, Mark Lang, Tim Siemens, Ron Read, Marvin Keller, and Rusty Tuttle. Interment will be in Ivy Hill Cemetery in Malcom.
Visitation will be held from 12:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. on Sunday at the Smith Funeral Home in Grinnell. His family will be present to greet friends from 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be designated in his name to the Madison Church of Christ, Grinnell Regional Hospice, and the Ivy Hill Cemetery Association and mailed in care of the Smith Funeral Home, PO Box 368, Grinnell, Iowa 50112.

John was born on September 25, 1943, in Grinnell, Iowa, the son of Alfred Robey and Mary Ann (McSwiggin) Robey. He was raised near Malcom, Iowa and attended country schools. He graduated from Brooklyn-Guernsey-Malcom High School in Brooklyn with the class of 1961. His class was the first to graduate from the new BGM High School.

He was united in marriage to Karen Jean Brooks on October 3, 1964, at the Madison Church of Christ near Brooklyn. The couple farmed near Malcom and Brooklyn all of their lives. John was a family-man, friend of many and a stranger to none. He had a fun-loving and keen sense of humor that made him easy to like. He held a passion for farming and worked tirelessly from sunup to sundown. John's enjoyments were older Farmall tractors, four-wheelers, and horses, attending races at the various local tracks, and rooting for his favorite drivers, Mel Morris & Rusty Wallace, while watching NASCAR races on television.

John is survived by three sons, Rod (Jackie Davis) Robey of Malcom, Dan (Kristin Adkins) Robey of Watford City, North Dakota, and David Robey of Brooklyn; five grandchildren, Nikki (Jason) Rooney of Montrose, Iowa, Aaron, Lauryn and T.J. Robey of West Point, Iowa, and Nathan Davis-Loucks of Grinnell; one great granddaughter, Aubre Rooney of Montrose, Iowa; and his siblings, Pat Claeys of Iowa City, Iowa, Tom (Pat) Robey of Pleasantville, New Jersey, and Sarah (David) Hall of Brooklyn.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and his wife of 34 years, Karen J. Robey who died on June 15, 1999.

Condolence & Memory Journal

Rod,Dan and Dave,
So sorry to hear about the passing of your dad. I will always remember growing up the times that our families spent together. I think I have a picture of him and myself going down a waterslide while on vacation in Missouri. Fun times! Your dad had that ever-present smile on his face, and everytime I think of John I can hear him saying "the heck".- that makes me smile!! :)
Take care, and know that you are in our thoughts and prayers~~ Diane

Todd,Diane, Courntey and Nicole VanErsvelde

Posted by Diane (Smith) VanErsvelde - North Liberty, IA - Friend   February 27, 2013


John Robey Family,
So sorry to hear of John's passing. I remember John in school and always enjoyed visiting with him. He could always make you laugh and feel better on your worst of days. He will be missed by everyone. My thoughts and prayers go out to you at this difficult time.

Posted by Theda (Slagle) May - Friend   February 25, 2013


I just received a phone call from my Mom. She shared the news of your Dad's passing. I'm so sorry for your loss. When I think of your Dad, a smile comes to my face! John was such a "card" and could bring others joy without even knowing it. Please know I'm thinking about you all and wish you peace and comfort as you celebrate the life of your Dad!!! Take care. Your friend - Angie (Hotchkin) Lobberecht

Posted by Angie (Hotchkin) Lobberecht - Friend   February 24, 2013


Dear Rod, Dave and Dan,

John and I will always remember your dad with his great smile and personality. I will never forget the day Luke had your dad and I in for a fish fry. We had a great time and Luke so loved your dad! Glad he is at peace now with no more pain! Our thoughts and prayers are with you!

Posted by Vicki Van Renterghem - Friend   February 24, 2013

John was a great Dad, Husband, and friend. John knew how to work and how to have fun. John enjoyed racing and going with his friend to the races. What great times.(Go Mel Morris)
We were all lucky to have our friend John. He will be missed.
Rod,Dan, and Dave we are truly sorry for your loss. Your Dad was a great man and touched many people in his lifetime. Always remember the good times for this is what your dad would want.

Posted by Jeff Vogel - Tiffin, IN - Friend   February 24, 2013

I just wanted to say I wish I had of got to spend more time with John I always enjoyed seeing him when I got the chance.My prayers are with each of you at this time that God will wrap his loving arms around you at this time.

Posted by Karen Anderson Austin - Atkins, AR - Cousin   February 24, 2013

One of my happiest childhood memories is going to Iowa to visit our wonderful cousins. We loved seeing John, Sarah, Tom, and Patty. We didn't see them often, but my sister Mary Ann and I adored them. It is not possible to think about John without smiling - his friendly and delightful personality will always be with me.

Posted by Sue Smith - Fallston, MD - Cousin   February 24, 2013

Ronald and John and friends shared good times at the stock care races and working together on farms. E

Posted by Ronald Vols - Grinnell, IA - friend and neighbor   February 23, 2013


The obituary for your dad was 'right on.' He "knew no stranger" and was a "fun-loving" person. And these traits were demonstrated every single day even when he did not feel good. He met each day with his Lord at his side, and acted this way-kindness, uplifting, encouraging, accepting, smiling, and loving. I feel privileged to have known him. What a wonderful, Christian man! I will miss him! Joyce

Posted by Joyce Otto - friend   February 23, 2013

Jackie, Rod, Nathan and the Robey family, Sorry to hear of the loss of your Dad. Our thoughts are with you. Dan and Robin Isaacson, Caleb and Carson

Posted by Robin Isaacson - Huxley, IA - family   February 22, 2013

Danny, David and Rod, So sorry to hear about Uncle John! I think fondly of the times I visited the farm as a kid! Johnny was always good for a laugh! I can still hear him saying "The heck" at anything I said. He always told me talked to fast!

Posted by Kim (Robey) Dempsey - Egg Harbor Twp., NJ - neice   February 22, 2013

To Rodney, Daniel, and David:

I know people will share many memories of your mom and dad with you. But no one will get the privilege of saying each time he came in the Brooklyn nursing home for many years he always looked me up even if it was just for a few minutes. Also, I have the great memory of being with him February 3rd as Joe Kriegel helped him from the church. He said I should not have come to hear the new minister but I wanted to anyway. Gods Blessings and take care.

Barbara Wilson

Posted by Barbara Wilson - Brooklyn, IA - Family Friend   February 22, 2013

Wish we could be there but please know you and your family are in our prayers.
All our love.

Posted by Brian, Lesley & Jacob Yaley - Danville, IA - Friend   February 22, 2013

Rod so sorry to hear about your dad you are in my thoughts and prayers. God Bless!

Kelly Bailey

Posted by Kelly Bailey - Grinnell, IA - friend   February 22, 2013

We have been friends sence child hood and thanks to Face Book we have got caught up the last few years. Sorry to hear of your passing,but we all know you went to a much better place.GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY! Willy Butler

Posted by Willis Butler - Sweeny, TX - friend   February 22, 2013

Uncle John,
You were such a great person and a great uncle. My life is so much better for having been your nephew. You are now reunited with Aunt Karen. I hope to see you both one day again.



Posted by FJ Robey - Stoneham, ME - Nephew   February 22, 2013


John Touched all our lives.....
Rod,Dan,Dave & Family, Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.We had some good times with John, he knew he was always welcome anytime of the day at our home.We always had lots of laughing,and remembering the past. He loved his sons very much.John's
heart is with us all.

Posted by Larry & Rita Vogel - Long time Friend's   February 21, 2013


So sorry to hear about your Dad passing.

Posted by Peggy Guyer - friend   February 21, 2013

Your Father will be missed by all. He always had a smile on his face and greeted everyone even if he didn't know them.. Once in a while when he was selling his sweetcorn, I would go over and sit in a lounge chair and visit with him. You can be very proud of your Dad as he was of you all. He is at peace now,no suffering and can join Karen in Heaven. May God be with you in the difficult days ahead.

Posted by Diane Davidson - Brooklyn, IA - friend   February 21, 2013

We are so sorry to hear about John. We always enjoyed visiting with him and buying sweet corn from him just around the corner from our house. What a nice person! You will all be in our thoughts and our prayers!

Posted by Darrel and Jan Heetland - Brooklyn - friends   February 21, 2013


I have yet to meet a kinder, more gentle, person than John. He always had a smile and good word for everyone. My thoughts and prayers are with his loving family. John will be greatly missed.

Posted by Joyce Connolly - BGM Classmate   February 21, 2013


Where to begin? Such a special relative, co-worker and friend! Laughs.... so many we had, lies (jokes) .....too numerous and sometimes outrageous to share, but most of all friendship....... can not be measured. He was truly a great person and you boys, can be so proud of your dad, as he loved you all so much, and he was such a good person.
We will really miss him! I don't know if we can eat the last of the sweet corn we have frozen, or always keep it there to remind us of what a great friend we had in John!

Posted by George and Lori Hiner - 2nd cousin   February 21, 2013


So very sorry to hear about John's passing. He will be greatly missed. Such a wonderful person he was. John always had kind and funny things to say to everyone and was always so upbeat and always had a smile even when he wasn't feeling well. My prayers are with the boys and all of his family.

Posted by Lynda Van Tomme - Friend   February 21, 2013

You all are in the thoughts and prayers ofthe Simmons family. Take Care

Posted by Dick R. Simmons - Mount Vernon, IA - Friend   February 21, 2013

So sorry about John's death. He was a good friend. He'd had lots of medical problems but hung in there and made the best of them. My prayers are with you.

Posted by Marilyn Meyer - Eden Prairie, MN - high school classmate and friend   February 21, 2013

Your family is in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

Pam Burkle, Mike Dostal, Luke,Casey & Maria Burkle, Joyce Anthony and family

Posted by PAM BURKLE - Brooklyn, IA - church member   February 21, 2013

We're so sorry to hear about your Dad. Always enjoyed talking to him. He knew no strangers. Please know our thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

Posted by Jane & George Cline - Brooklyn, IA - friend   February 21, 2013

Sorry to hear about John. We bought corn from him for many years. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

Posted by Ron and Judy Stonebraker - Brooklyn, IA - friend   February 21, 2013

I am sorry to heae the passing of John. He is a great guy who loved to laugh, smile and brightens someones day. All of you are in my thoughts and prayers. May you find peace, love, comfort in those around you during this difficult time.

Posted by Joan McCammant - Brooklyn, IA - Friend   February 21, 2013


I will always remeber the time John took Justin's clothes when we went camping and Justin's had gone into take a shower John snuck in and stole them leaivng Justin with NOTHING to wear!!! I loved talking and catchin up with him when he came into the Pour House!! He was the kindest caring man I've met....May he rest in peace with his loving wife!!!

Posted by Phyllis Morris - Friend   February 20, 2013