About Us - Staff
The staff of Pence ~ Reese Funeral Home and Cremation Services are pleased to be able to provide a wide variety of resources and services. We have a new funeral home facility and Tribute Center Community Hall. Our comfortable surroundings have been designed to help family and friends feel at ease. In every aspect of our services, we strive to help family and friends remember the stories that reflect who their loved one was, for it is through the sharing of our stories that our hearts begin to heal.
We, at Pence ~ Reese Funeral Home and Cremation Services, realize caring for a grieving family is a community effort. We are honored to be a part of the healing community. We join with a community of clergy, healthcare workers, friends and extended family to help support a family in their time of grief.
We are honored to have served in to be a part of the Newton community since 1925.
Our licensed funeral directors are never too busy to meet with you. Our commitment is to always set our standards high. You can expect the highest level of professional and personal service and care.
Our staff plays an important role in our services. They help us ensure everyone is greeted and all details have been completed.
Levi & Barb Pence - funeral director
Levi, a Hardin County, Iowa native, graduated from the American Institute of Business in Des Moines, Iowa. He married Barbara Groeneveld in 1969. Levi served in the United States Army in Viet Nam with the 101st Airborne Division. Upon his return, he continued his education at Des Moines Area Community College and the Indiana College of Mortuary Science. He worked for Grandview Funeral Home in Des Moines before serving in Zearing.
Levi has always enjoyed carpentry and remodeling projects. Barb enjoys horticulture and taking care of the grandchildren. Barb has been a member of the Skiff Medical Center Auxiliary and Newton After Five Club. Levi has been Past President of Newton Morning Kiwanis, Past Chairman of Hospice of Jasper County, Past President of Newton Christian School Board, and Past President of Newton Chamber of Commerce and has served on numerous boards in the community.
Levi has dedicated his efforts to care for and raise his family with love, compassion, concern, and caring. He and his family have transferred these same efforts to caring for the families they serve.
Jeff & Debby Pence – funeral director & pre-planning counselor
Jeff is very involved in the community. He has served on the Newton Christian School Board, Hospice of Jasper County Board, Newton Noon Kiwanis Club as President, American Cancer Society – Jasper County Unit Board Member, Newton United Way, and serves at Immanuel Baptist Church.
Before serving at the funeral home, Debby taught Music for grades Kindergarten through 8th Grade at Newton Christian School. Debby stays very busy with their daughter Leslie, as well as many activities in the community. She is the President of the Skiff Medical Center Auxiliary Board, is a Trustee at Skiff Medical Center, is a member on the TLC (Those Loving Children) Board and on the School Board of Newton Christian School, and is very active in her church by leading the Cubbies group and teaching Sunday School.
Gene J. Groeneveld - funeral director
Gene is a member of Immanuel Baptist Church. Gene has been a member of Kiwanis International, the Newton Airfair Board for eight years and the Optimist Club. He is currently a member of Emerson Hough Izaak Walton League, F.F.D.A. – Flying Funeral Directors of America, A.O.P.A. – Aircraft Owners and Operators Association, the Newton Salvation Army Board, I.F.D.A. – Iowa Funeral Directors Association (serving on the Mortuary Emergency Response Team, the Education Committee and Continuing Education Committee).
Harold & Marilyn Reese – staff
Harold died on June 23, 2006. Marilyn continues to serve at the funeral home. She has served on many boards and is very active at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Newton.
Eldon Pals – staff
Eldon Pals and his wife, Lola, have resided in Newton for the past 20 years. Since 2001, he has worked with the Pence ~ Reese Funeral Home.
Eldon received his college training from Omaha Baptist Bible College, graduating with the class of 1957. He served in churches in New Hartford, Iowa; Le Crosse, Wisconsin; Bloomfield, Iowa; Forest City, Iowa and Monroe, Iowa. He currently assists in pulpit supply for local area churches.
W. Andrew Emmert – staff
Andy Emmert was born in Colfax, Iowa in 1914 and moved to Newton in 1928. He has resided here all but 45 months that he spent in the U.S. Army in the South West Pacific Theater. Andy worked for three and a half years for the Des Moines Register and Tribune, was a Service Manager for Dale Schlotfeldt Olds-Cad for 10 years, and was the Owner-Operator of Texaco & Sinclair Service Stations for 25 years before joining the funeral home. He has assisted the funeral home in various capacities since 1977. You may find his smiling face greeting families as they come to the funeral home.
Andy and his wife Carlene have been involved in the community. Andy was an early member of the Newton Development Committee, Newton Chamber of Commerce, American Legion, a lifetime member of the VFW, member of the Masonic Lodge for over 50 years and most constituent orders, serving as Past Master of Masons, High Priest of Gebal Chapter, Illustious Master of Royal & Select Masters, also served as Rt. Eminent Grand Commander of the Knights Templar of the State of Iowa in 1995-1996. Andy has been recognized for outstanding performance as Service Manager in having fulfilled the requirements for membership in the Master Service Managers League. He is also a lifetime member of the First United Methodist Church. He has served on all the church committees and was the head of most of them at some time. Andy was the President of the Untied Methodist Trustee Board for over 13 years and was a church usher for over 45 years.