LACROSSE — Joel H. Ficken, 60, died March 29, at his home. Mr. Ficken was born April 14, 1953, in Ellis County, the son of Wayne R. and Victoria “Vicki” (Stremel) Ficken. He was a lifelong resident of Rush County. A 1971 graduate of LaCrosse High School, he was a farmer, and previously a Mountain Man Nut & Fruit Co. distributor. On Nov. 30, 2002, he married Debra S. “Deb” Burton at the United Methodist Church in Bison.
Mr. Ficken was a member of the United Methodist Church in Bison, Walnut City Lodge #215 in Rush Center, past president of Rush County Farm Bureau, past president of the Rush County Fair Board, past board member of the Rush County Memorial Hospital, and assisted the First United Methodist Church in Great Bend, serving on various boards and committees.
Survivors include, his wife, Debra S. “Deb” Ficken of LaCrosse; one daughter, Leslie Sweasy and her husband, Scott, of Newton; one grandson, Jase B. Sweasy; one stepson, Samuel Rziha of Great Bend; three stepdaughters, Candie Seely of Disney, Okla., Valerie Ruiz of Great Bend, and Lorie Weston of Olathe; seven stepgrandchildren, Kyle Rziha, Nicole Rziha, Derrick Seely, Dakota Seely, Jordan Vsetecka, Shaylee Ruiz, and Addy Weston; one brother, John W. Ficken and his wife, Deanne L. of Bison; and one sister, Lana F. Houston and her husband, Bill G., of Lincoln. He was preceded in death by his parents.
Memorial services will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, at the United Methodist Church in Bison with the Rev. Kathy Bannister officiating. Memorials are suggested to the Joel H. Ficken Memorial Fund. The funds will be used to assist local children with cancer and their families. Condolences or remembrances may be left for the family at www.charterfunerals.com/locations/janousek-lacrosse.php.