Robert Lee Boelman

Robert Lee Boelman

Robert Lee Boelman


Robert “Bob” Lee Boelman, 80, died peacefully Saturday, July 1, 2023, at his residence at Bridgewater in Coralville.

Funeral Services will be held at 2:30 p.m. Friday, July 7, 2023, at St. Andrew Presbyterian Church, 140 Gathering Place Lane, in Iowa City. Rev. Kyle Otterbein will officiate. Visitation will be Friday, July 7, prior to the funeral from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at St. Andrew. Graveside Committal will be at 11 a.m. Saturday at Pleasant View Cemetery in Aplington with a community gathering at the Aplington Recreation Complex at noon.

The funeral will be live-streamed on the St. Andrew website at The direct link to the live-stream is

Bob was born in Pleasant Valley Township, Grundy County, Iowa, on Jan. 20, 1943. He was the youngest of nine children and the son of Ben and Anna (DeVries) Boelman. Bob was a graduate of Aplington High School and received his B.S. degree in Accounting from Missouri Western College in St. Joseph, Mo.

Bob married Hyla Thompson Rash on June 8, 1968, in Toledo, Iowa.

He worked in the private sector in various accounting and human resources managerial positions in the agricultural industry, retiring in 2004. During his career, Bob worked at O’s Gold Seed Company (later Asgrow) in Parkersburg and Ag Services of America in Cedar Falls.

Bob lived by one line found in the Jaycee Creed: “Service to humanity is the best work of life.” He lived this Creed in multiple ways.

In the public sector, he served on the Aplington School Board, Aplington City Council, and was elected Mayor of Aplington. As Mayor, he also served on the Iowa Northeast Regional Council of Governments which included an opportunity to speak in Washington, D.C., about health care needs in rural communities. Bob was a member and board member of many service clubs including the Aplington Jaycees and Aplington Lions Club. As a member of the Jaycees, Bob played an instrumental role in the development of the Aplington Recreation Complex, establishing a new golf course, swimming pool and tennis courts for the Aplington area. Bob also served on the committee that resulted in a bond vote being passed to completely remodel the Aplington school campus.

Bob and Hyla moved to Coralville upon retirement where they were members of St. Andrew Presbyterian Church with Bob serving as an Elder. He was a member of the Coralville Kiwanis and served on committees for the City of Coralville. Bob and Hyla greatly enjoyed Hawkeye sports, dining, social, and cultural opportunities in the Iowa City/Coralville area.

Bob is survived by two sons, David and Curtis, both of Urbandale; a grandson, Peter Odia, of Ankeny and his wife, Madison; two sisters, Leona Vigars of Rochester, Minn., and Lois Lumley of Vista, Calif.; a sister-in-law, Marge Boelman of Placentia, Calif.; numerous nieces, nephews, and extended family including Hyla’s two brothers, Craig of Denver and Steve of Clutier and their wives and families.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Hyla in 2022; and siblings, Tillie (Fred) Johnson, Folkert (Shirley) Boelman, Helen (John) Graham, Pearl (Al) Kinrade, George Boelman, Ben Boelman, Jr.; brothers-in-law, Bill Vigars and Darwyn Lumley.

The City of Aplington is modernizing the original Aplington Recreation Complex including the building of a new swimming pool. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Aplington New Pool Project c/o City of Aplington, 409 10th St., Aplington, IA 50604. Following Hyla’s death, a development fund was established at Aplington-Parkersburg Schools and memorials may also be directed to the Hyla Boelman Memorial c/o Aplington-Parkersburg Schools, 215 10th St., Aplington, IA 50604.

The family would like to thank doctors and staff at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Iowa City Hospice and St. Croix Hospice, and the fantastic team at Bridgewater in Coralville for the compassionate care provided to Bob.

Online condolences at

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