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Gilbert Jens Turben

Gilbert Jens Turben, 93, of Viroqua died Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2018, at Gundersen Health System in La Crosse.

Gilbert was born at home in Readstown, Feb. 5, 1925, to Gilbert Jens and Edna (Vanderbelt) Turben. He was a high school graduate who served his country over seven years with the U.S. Army, including the end of World War II and the beginning of the Korean War. He saw action as a part of the second wave on Normandy. During this time Gilbert met and married the love of his life, Margaret Louise ‘Peggy' Swiggum, March 12, 1948, by a justice of the peace on the Prairie du Chein courthouse steps.

This began Gilbert's 70-year loving adventure with Peggy, together raising 12 children and tobacco at the same time. He was very particular, too, about his tobacco crop. At the same time working over 40 years for Burl Burns Construction, as a heavy equipment operator. If 12 weren't enough already, again Gilbert showed his love for family by not only taking in Peggy's disabled sister, but was her often-time personal caregiver while Peggy also worked. As a younger man there were frequent fishing trips with his sons, his bologna and crackers, and burlap bags for hauling back loads of Sheepheads from down by Lynxville.

While relaxing, being an avid reader, he would be seen deep into a Louie Lamoure novel or just as intently watching an “old” country western movie, or the Brewers or Packers both of which, he never missed a game. He also enjoyed the peace of gardening and he truly “hated” Creeping Charlie.

Gilbert is survived by, his wife, Peggy; his 12 children, Charles (Rachel), Gilbert Jr., Mary (d. Rickey) Johnson, Susan (Don) Carlson, David (Elaine), Mark (Brenda), Brian (Janice), Martha (Gary) Leis, Brent (Beverly), Barbara Frank, Bradley (Penny) and Melissa (Mike) Skildum; 26 grandchildren and spouses; a great many great-grandchildren; as well as nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; all of his siblings, two sisters, Gertie Martin and Vivian Kast; three brothers, Gerald, Virgil and Donald; two sons-in-law, Rickey Johnson and Randy Olson; and his very special sister-in-law, Karen Swiggum.

Blessed be our memories of Gilbert, he will be greatly missed.

A funeral service will be held at 6 p.m. Tuesday evening, Oct. 9, at the Vosseteig-Larson Funeral Home in Viroqua. Pastor George Shick of the Redemption Chapel in Viroqua, will officiate. Friends may call during a visitation from 4 to 6 p.m. before the service at the funeral home. A graveside service with full military honors will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10, at the Kickapoo United Lutheran Church Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers or plants, memorials are preferred. To view the whole obituary or leave online condolence you can go to The Vosseteig-Larson Funeral Home, 123 W. Decker St. in Viroqua, is serving the family, 608-637-2100.

the life of: Gilbert Turben
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