Welcome to the memorial page for

John G. VanDykhorst

August 16, 1931 ~ August 6, 2017 (age 85)

John Gerald VanDykhorst, age 85, of Watertown, SD, passed away on Sunday, August 6, 2017, at Jenkins Living Center in Watertown. Funeral services will be at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, August 11, 2017, at the First United Methodist Church in Watertown. Rev. Sara Nelson will officiate along with Pastor Jim Shea and Pastor Scott Dempster. Music will be provided by Karen Mee as organist with Ed & Wendy Cline as vocalists. The family is requested to meet at the church on Friday by 10:30 a.m. for a prayer service.


Burial will be at the Hamlin Reformed Cemetery, rural Castlewood, SD. Honorary pallbearers will be John’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren and Brandon Scott, Dr. Wilde and his Care Team and the Jenkins Living Center Staff. Active pallbearers will be Dan Krause, Dale Saathoff, Robert Kasdorf, David Buschenfeld, Stacy DeBoer and Rollie Sikkink.


Visitation will be at the Crawford-Osthus Funeral Chapel in Watertown on Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. and prior to services at the church on Friday.


John was born on August 16, 1931, at Dempster, SD, to Evert and Johanna (DeWall) VanDykhorst. He was baptized at Hamlin Reformed Church. John attended Estelline School #6 through the eighth grade.


On August 26, 1951, John was united in marriage to Lillian Buschenfeld at Estelline, SD. The couple farmed near Estelline, Henry and Castlewood. John retired from farming and he and Lillian moved to Clear Lake. John worked in construction. He enjoyed making wooden crafts such as old farm wagons, hay racks, horses, windmills, little barns, cabinetry and whatever we could convince him to make for us. He also enjoyed keeping their yard looking the best in the neighborhood, growing a big garden, playing cards, being outdoors and helping Lillian babysit kids. John was a member of the First United Methodist Church.


Grateful for having shared his life are his wife of nearly 66 years, Lillian, of Watertown; his children: Gloria VanDykhorst of Watertown, Don VanDykhorst and his special friend, Jolene Harms, of Castlewood and Betty (Don ) Weidler of Howard, SD; five grandchildren: Michael “Mike” VanDykhorst of Watertown, Robert “Bob” VanDykhorst of Brookings, SD, Christina VanDykhorst of Vermillion, SD, Laura (Randall) Shannon of Madison, SD and David Weidler of Madison, SD; three great-granddaughters: Bentley, Nevaeh and Piper Shannon; one sister, Delores Jongeling, of Brookings; two brothers-in-law, Ed Saathoff of Estelline and Raymond Buschenfeld of Clear Lake; three sisters-in-law: Judy VanDykhorst of Estelline, Delores Buschenfeld of Clear Lake and Alberta Weinberg of Brookings; family friend, Kathy Johnson, of Watertown; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.


He was preceded in death by two daughters, Joyce Ann and Mary Ann; one grandson, Joshua VanDykhorst; his parents; one sister, Evelyn Saathoff; one brother, Eddie VanDykhorst; four brothers-in-law: Melvin Buschenfeld, Clarence Buschenfeld, Rich Jongeling and Art Weinberg; and one sister-in-law, Alice Buschenfeld. 

 Service Information

August 10, 2017

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Crawford-Osthus Funeral Chapel
1311 4th St. NE
Watertown, SD 57201

Funeral Service
August 11, 2017

11:00 AM
First United Methodist Church
4 2nd Ave SE
Watertown, SD 57201

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