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Services Tuesday for victim of rural Gladbrook home explosion

November 2, 2013
Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

Mary L. Appelgate, 72, of Gladbrook, passed away Thursday, October 31, 2013 at her residence. Memorial services will be 11 a.m., Tuesday, November 5, 2013, at Gladbrook United Methodist Church with Rev. Carol Kress officiating. Visitation will be 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Monday, November 4, 2013, at the Gladbrook United Methodist Church. Inurnment will be held at a later date at Crystal cemetery in rural Gladbrook. A memorial has been established in her name. The Gladbrook Chapel of the Anderson Funeral Homes has been entrusted with the arrangements. Online condolences may be sent to

Mary was born August 15, 1941 to Otto and Selma (Engle) Oettchen in rural Gladbrook. She graduated from Gladbrook High School in 1959. Mary was united in marriage to Henry Junge Jr. in 1963 in Reinbeck. He died August 21, 1977. She then married Bruce Appelgate on February 15, 1980 in Gladbrook. Mary was a homemaker and assisted her husband with farming in the rural Gladbrook area. She was a member of the Gladbrook United Methodist Church where she served several offices in the UM Women's group. She helped organize the church Election Soup Supper. Mary was the past president of Gladbrook Women's Club. She was also a member of the 500 club and the Wednesday Morning Coffee Club. Mary volunteered for the Hospital in the gift shop for 35 plus years. She loved to play Bingo, was a professional shopper, and was known as the Queen of cooking.

Mary will be missed by her husband, Bruce, two daughters; Jodi Junge of Shoreview, MN, Jeni (Charles Roper) of Phoenix, AZ, a step-daughter, Diane (Tom) Wood of Ankeny, IA, two granddaughters; Meghan and Laura Wood, a brother, Herbie (Caroline) Oettchen of Gladbrook, and her mother-in-law, Gladys Appelgate of Gladbrook. She was preceded in death by her first husband, Henry Junge Jr., her parents, and two brothers; Werner and Walter Oettchen.

EARLIER: Mary L. Applegate, 72, has been identified as the victim of an explosion at her rural Gladbrook home on Thursday morning, Oct. 31. Daniel D. DeWitt, 29, Gladbrook was taken by ambulance from the scene of the explosion to Marshalltown Medical and Surgical Center and transferred to University of Iowa Hospitals in Iowa City for treatment. Authorities have said it is believed Dewitt was servicing the furnace in the home at the time of the explosion.

Fire Departments from Garwin, Gladbrook, Toledo and Green Mountain responded to the scene on Thursday morning.

The State Fire Marshal's Office and Gladbrook and Garwin fire departments are investigating.



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