Henry M. Rahe, 92


Henry M. Rahe, 92, of Columbia, formerly of Valmeyer, died at 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021, peacefully, at his home. He was diagnosed with acute myeloma leukemia on Friday, Aug. 6. He was fully vaccinated from COVID-19 and always wore a mask in public.

Funeral services were held on Monday, Oct. 18, at Zoar United Church of Christ, with Pastor R.J. Morgan officiating. Cremation followed.

Mr. Rahe was born on Dec. 18, 1928, at St. Louis Maternity Hospital, to Henry E. and Helen (Moeller) Rahe. He arrived at his lifelong home via the Missouri Pacific “Dinky” train to Warnock Station in the Monroe County Bottoms. The last two miles to the farm were in his Uncle George’s Model T.

In late September, after consulting with his doctor he decided that due to his age and the harsh effects of treatments, he would rather die comfortably at his home. He signed himself into Hospice of Southern Illinois and then Saturday, before he passed, he mowed his lawn as a hospice patient. Although, he had to repair the mower first. His family felt that this event summed up his life. Always active, his son, Daniel, accused him of liking to farm because he could fix things, not because he enjoyed farming. Mr. Rahe worked hard, all his life, as a farmer, then a river tankerman and mechanic. But he considered most of it as fun, not work. He was an avid reader and was curious about many topics, including farming, politics, world affairs and even Hollywood gossip.

Mr. Rahe attended Schallom School and then Valmeyer High School, class of 1946. After high school, he farmed with his father until he was drafted into the United States Marine Corps in 1951. He was stationed at Camp Pendleton, CA, where he met and married Elizabeth “Belle” Bustamante. They married on Aug. 29, 1953. The newlyweds drove cross country in Oct. 1953 to rural Valmeyer where they farmed and raised a family.

Mr. Rahe is survived by his daughter-in-law, Maribeth Rahe; sons, Daniel (Brenda) Rahe and Edward (Leanne) Rahe; honorable mentions, Joe (Suzanne) Siburt and Steve Hof; grandchildren, Deandra (Lt. Col. USAF Robert) MacDermott; Nathan (Courtney Munch) Rahe; Allison (Matthew) Rude; Zachary (Rebecca) Rahe and Erik Rahe; great-grandchildren, Daniel, Henry and Otto MacDermott; Charles Rude and Eleanor and Rhiannon Rahe; sister-in-law, Stella Espinoza; brother-in-law, Victor Bustamante; and cousins, nieces and nephews. 

He was preceded in death by his parents; wife; and son, David.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Monroe County Farm Bureau Foundation or Zoar United Church of Christ.