John Oelke

January 20, 1933 ~ February 28, 2021 (age 88)

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John H. Oelke, 88, of Defiance, passed away on Sunday, February 28, 2021 at his niece's home (Julia and Denny Dominique) in Defiance while under Hospice care. 
He was born in Defiance, Ohio on January 20, 1933 to the late Herman and Gertrude (Duerk) Oelke. John was a 1951 graduate of Defiance High School. He proudly served in the U.S. Army from February 5, 1953 through January 31, 1955 during the Korean War. 

John was a member of St. John Lutheran Church. He was proficient in electronic repairs in his younger years. John was a driver for Tim Hornish Trucking for over 40 years until his retirement in 2012. He was also a member of VFW #3360 and AmVets #1991. He enjoyed hunting, fishing, working on cars, and going to auctions and ice cream socials. He loved spending time with his family.
John will be sadly missed by his sister, Helen (James) Slow of Deep Run, NC, his nephews; Jack Schilperoot, Trib (Paula) Slow, Jan (Becky) Schilperoot, Kim (Joy) Oelke, and Baird Slow, and his nieces; Linda Brown, Susan (Greg) Becker, Lori (Kenny) Olson, Toby (Jerry) Richards, Julia (Denny) Dominique, and Jennifer (Chris) Grubbs.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers Omer Oelke and Gene Oelke, and his sisters Trudy Schilperoot and Gertrude Oelke.
A graveside service will be held on Thursday, March 4, 2021 at Riverside Cemetery in Defiance, with  graveside military rites accorded by VFW #3360. Rev. James W. Slow will officiate. Schaffer Funeral Home was honored to assist the family with arrangements.
Memorials are suggested to St. John Lutheran Food Pantry, or Ft. Defiance Humane Society. Online condolences can be given at

To send flowers to John's family, please visit our floral store.


Graveside Service
March 4, 2021

11:00 AM
Celebration of Life Service (Riverside Cemetery)

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