Howard L. Gaffney, age 87 of Renville, passed away Monday, July 6, 2015 at his home. Funeral services will be 10:30 a.m. Friday, July 10 at Zion United Methodist Church in Danube. Visitation will be 5:00-8:00 p.m. Thursday at Redwood Valley Funeral Home and will continue one hour prior to the services at church on Friday. Burial is in Middle Creek Zion Cemetery. Online condolences may be sent at www.stephensfuneralservice.com. Stephens Funeral Service – Redwood Valley Funeral Home in Redwood Falls is assisting the family with arrangements.
Howard L. Gaffney was born June 1, 1928 in Flora Township, Renville County, Minnesota to Frank George and Emma Elvina (Draeger) Gaffney. He was baptized and confirmed at Middle Creek United Methodist Church, and was a lifelong member there. He attended country school District #8 through the 8th grade. After school, Howard began farming with his father, Frank. In 1952, he was drafted into the US Army. While home on leave, Howard married Lorraine A. Hemingsen on June 16, 1953 at the Methodist Church in Renville. Howard was then stationed in Germany for a year. Upon receiving his honorable discharge from the Army, Howard returned home and took over the farm. He enjoyed taking his horses, Tony and Champ, to horse shows, and was part of the Amigo Riders Saddle Club. Howard and Lorraine were blessed with three children: Kris, Jim, and Lisa. He was proud of his family, and loved spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. In 1981, Howard and Lorraine purchased their lake cabin on Nest Lake, and made many years of happy memories there. Howard loved fishing, hunting, and camping, and took yearly camping trips to Grand Marais. Howard and Lorraine celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary with all of their children and grandchildren in Grand Marais. Howard enjoyed canoeing and kayaking, and loved to simply float down the river. After Howard and Lorraine were both retired, they traveled extensively to places including Ireland, England, Germany twice, Alaska three times, China, Cameroon, Nova Scotia, and all across Canada. He was a voracious reader; a lifetime student of books and people. Howard was a member of the Sacred Heart American Legion. On July 6, 2015, Howard L. Gaffney passed away at his home in Flora Township, the same home where he was born 87 years ago.
Howard is survived by his wife, Lorraine; children: Kris (Brad) Myers, Jim (Marie) Gaffney, and Lisa (Tom) Zamberletti; grandchildren: Dustin (Sarah) Myers, April (Jake) Kretschmar, Brady (Kasey) Myers, James and Mega Gaffney; great-grandchildren Casen, Halle, and Carter Myers, and Victoria Dennis; and many nieces and nephews, other relatives and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, and siblings: Ruth King, Ralph, Rolland, Grace Breitkreutz, Marian in infancy, and Margaret Welch.