Cover photo for Westly "Bud" Bahnsen's Obituary
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1934 Westly "Bud" Bahnsen 2024

Westly "Bud" Bahnsen

January 30, 1934 — May 9, 2024

Mason City

Westly R. “Bud” Bahnsen, of Mason City, passed away Thursday, May 9, 2024, at MercyOne North Iowa Medical Center. A memorial service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, May 13, 2024, at the Old Stone United Methodist Church, 1 Jackson St, Rock Falls. Visitation will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, May 12, 2024, at Major Erickson Funeral Home, 111 N Pennsylvania Ave. Memorials may be directed to Old Stone Methodist Church – Rock Falls, or the Rock Falls Cemetery Association.  

Westly Roosevelt Bahnsen was born on January 30, 1934 (F.D. Roosevelt’s birthday) in rural Rock Falls, Iowa to Carsten John and Addie Marian (Mitchell) Bahnsen. The delivery doctor was S.S. Westly.  

Bud was baptized at Rock Creek Lutheran Church. He was confirmed at Rock Falls Methodist Church on August 13, 1945, by Pastor George Gaide. 

Bud attended Rock Falls Schools and graduated in 1952. He started farming the WM Schlobahm farm in his junior year of high school, always knowing he wanted to be a farmer. He served in the Iowa National Guard Co. 133 from 1951-1959. 

Bud married Pauline Petersen on October 24, 1954, at the English Lutheran Church in Manly.  

Bud worked at the sugar beet plant and tended for Gus Jost. Worked on the construction of Mercy Hospital, delivered LP Gas for Midland Corp., and worked at Allied Mills. All to supplement the love of farming. 

Bud and Pauline moved to the Harold Schneider farm northeast of Rock Falls when his parents retired from that farm. Bud and Pauline moved to the Mor-Gain farm east of Mason City in 1960 in partnership with Harlan W. Girton. The Bahnsen-Girton farm was incorporated in 1973. The Bahnsens raised three children on this farm.

Bud sold NK Seeds for over 30 years. He was a member of the Old Stone Methodist Church, a member of the 20-30 club. He was the Beef Superintendent and served on the Youth Council for Cerro Gordo County. After retiring in 2000 and moving to Mason City in 2001, he worked at 5 Star Co-Op in the spring and fall for 7 years.

Bud never met a stranger. Bud liked to fish, play cards, read, travel, and play shuffleboard with his Lakeshore friends. Together, Bud and Pauline spent winters in Lakeshore, Florida. Bud and Pauline had the gift of hospitality, hosting exchange students from Greece and Sweden. Bud was well known as Barbeque Bud and roasted whole hogs for many years.

Bud is survived by his wife of 69 years, Pauline; Children Christian (Linh), Paula Anderson, Carrie (Ron) Waldbillig; grandchildren, Benjamin (Carson Cary) Anderson, Matthew Anderson, Kathryn (Mitch) Hull, Carsten Bahnsen, Laurie (Mike) Walls, Olivia (Jason) Fitts; great grandchildren, Alison Walls, Nathan Walls, Faith Fitts, Regan Hull; brothers and sisters-in-law, Marvin (Anita) Peterson; Margaret Sabin; exchange student Stefan Berglin and family; and many nieces, nephews, cousins and dear friends.

Preceding him in death are his parents, father-in-law and mother-in-law, Sonke and Tillie Petersen; sister, Dola (Jack) Shannon; In-laws, Paul Sabin, Mary Louise (Marvin) Byington, John (Joanne) Petersen, Tom Petersen; son-in-law, Ross Anderson; grandson, Brian Waldbillig and a great grandchild, Brooke Fitts. 


To send flowers to the family in memory of Westly "Bud" Bahnsen, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, May 12, 2024

2:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

Major Erickson Funeral Home & Crematory

111 N Pennsylvania Ave, Mason City, IA 50401

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Memorial Service

Monday, May 13, 2024

Starts at 10:30 am (Central time)

Old Stone United Methodist Church

1 West Jackson Street, Rock Falls, IA 50467

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Monday, May 13, 2024

Rock Falls Cemetery

Rock Falls, IA 50467

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