Clark was born on October 18, 1927 at the family farm in Haxtun to Ernest and Vera Starkebaum. Clark attended schools in the Haxtun area and studied at Colorado State University for two years prior to enlisting in the U.S. Navy. He served for two years in the Pacific while stationed in San Diego. Upon his honorable discharge he resumed his studies at CSU. He was a member of the university's Symphony Band as well as the CSU Band that he toured the country with. Before he graduated, Clark met his wife Laverne on a blind date in 1948 and they were married on August 14, 1949. Upon his graduation with a degree in Agriculture they returned to the family farm in Haxtun. Clark farmed for many years with his father and later with his son, John. Clark and Laverne were also local business owners. They operated the Haxtun Locker Plant for a number of years while farming. Clark and Ruth moved into the town of Haxtun in 1997.
Clark was actively involved with civic functions in the community. He was a member of the Haxtun United Methodist Church where he served on several committees, sang in the choir, and was a Sunday school teacher for many years. He also participated as a board member for several organizations in town including the Haxtun School Board for 12 years, the Haxtun Hospital Board, and the Haxtun Community Bank Board. Clark was also a member of the American Legion and a charter member of the Lions Club. Clark suffered a stroke in January 2007. After this he was no longer able to participate in the community activities he so thoroughly enjoyed.
Clark's family provided great joy to his life and he took pride in supporting them whenever he could. He and Laverne attended hundreds of sporting events, at times traveling many miles to follow his children's or grandchildren's teams. During the summers they would watch their family's livestock and horse shows at the local and state fairs. Clark and Laverne were recently honored as Grand Marshals of the Haxtun Corn Festival Parade and the Phillips County Fair Parade.
Most recently Clark was involved with the vision of the Haxtun Car Wash with his son, Steve. Although he could not physically help in building or running the car wash, he was very excited about every phase of construction and enjoyed rides on the golf cart to see it. He was very proud of the service it provides to the community. Clark will be remembered for always having a smile on his face, words of encouragement for others, and a hug for his family and friends.
Clark is survived by his wife Laverne. They enjoyed each other's company for nearly 70 years. They were blessed with five children, Deborah and husband Richard, John and wife Julia, Larry, Steven and Kari. They have sixteen grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. Kelly Biays was his care provider for the last three years. Clark was preceded in death by his daughter-in-law, Debbi. Memorials can be directed to the Clark Starkebaum Memorial, care of the Points West Community Bank in Haxtun, where the funds will be used for community enhancement projects.
Our Heavenly Father called Clark home on February 18, 2019 at the age of 91. He died at his home surrounded by his loving family. A celebration of life will be held March 18, 2019 at 10:30 a.m. at the Haxtun United Methodist Church. The service will be officiated by Pastor Jeri Soens and Baucke Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.
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