Harold A. Varce

June 08, 2021

Service Details

Harold A. Varce, 96, died Tuesday, June 8, 2021 at Calvin Community in Des Moines. He was born November 25, 1924 to George and Clara (Brown) Varce in Ventura, Iowa.

Harold graduated from Granger High School, Kletzing College in Oskaloosa, and Union Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. He served a church in Dayton, Ohio, and several churches in Iowa. He was founding pastor of Faith United Methodist Church in Ankeny, the first new United Methodist Church in Iowa after the 1968 union of the Evangelical United Brethren and the Methodist Churches. The last seventeen years of his ministry was as Executive Director of the Des Moines Area Religious Council (DMARC), during which January Thaw, the DMARC Food Pantry, and Hospice of Central Iowa, along with a number of other ministries, were developed with his leadership.

His retirement commitment was calling on people from his church, Immanuel United Methodist, and others in the community. He also enjoyed traveling overseas and in the United States, and was proud of visiting every state capitol (with pictures of each) in the United States.

His family was of special importance to him and he valued and appreciated many special times together.

Harold is survived by his wife of 40 years, Virginia; daughters, Kathy Vance (Gary) and Barb Colonno (Craig); step-daughters, Cindy Ferriss (Rick) and Lynne Haney; grandchildren, Greg Vance (Jen), Sara Thompson (Jon), Lisa Johnson (Dana), Katie Johnson (Jessie), Christy Poindexter (Scott), Jason Ferriss (Nicole), and Eric Ferriss; great-grandchildren, Avalon and Olivia Vance, Nate, Ben and Luke (deceased) Thompson, Carter, Claire and Grace Johnson, Joseph and Lacey Poindexter, Jacob (Kylee) Ferriss, Shelby Ferriss, Alyssa, Ricky and Erika Ferriss; great-great-grandchildren, Jackson, Wyatt and Raelynn Ferriss; brother, Don Varce; and many friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; first wife, Adeline Varce; siblings, Artheda Hunter, Pauline Varce, Paul Varce, Marjorie Varce, and Naomi Varce; and great-grandson, Luke Thompson.

Harold had decided many years ago to donate his body to the University of Iowa and the family were able to fulfil that request. A memorial service will be held 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 30, 2021 at Immanuel United Methodist Church, 2900 49th Street, Des Moines. Family will greet guests before the service from 9:00 to 10:30 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to Immanuel United Methodist Church or to the Des Moines Area Religious Council.

Online condolences may be expressed at www.HamiltonsFuneralHome.com.