Clarence C. Hightshoe

  • Born: December 26, 1920
  • Died: January 9, 2016
  • Location: Iowa City, Iowa

Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service

2720 Muscatine Avenue
Iowa City, IA 52240
Tel. (319) 338-1132

Tribute & Message From The Family

Clarence Cecil Hightshoe, 95, longtime resident of Iowa City, died Saturday, January 9, 2016 at Briarwood Care Center in Iowa City.

Funeral Services will be held Saturday, January 16, 2016 at Zion Lutheran Church (310 N. Johnson Street, Iowa City). Visitation will be from 9 to 11 a.m. The funeral service will begin at 11 am. A luncheon will follow the service. Burial will be at Memory Gardens Cemetery, Iowa City, with full military honors.

Clarence Cecil Hightshoe, son of Alvin and Elsa (Maske) Hightshoe, was born December 26, 1920 in rural Keokuk County, IA, east of Keota. He was a 1940 graduate of University High School. He married high school sweetheart Alda Zahner on November 26, 1941, just days before Pearl Harbor. Clarence enlisted in the Army Air Corps in 1942 and served in Europe during WWII with the 384th Heavy Bombardment Group of the 8th United States Air Force based at Grafton-Underwood, England. He was the navigator on a B-17G Flying Fortress and flew 29 missions. His plane was shot down behind German lines on his sixth mission (Sept 9, 1944), and both he and his crew fled safely back to Allied held territory, France.

He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal, and Liberation of France Medal (1945), and retired from the Air Force Reserve in 1980 as Lt. Colonel.

Clarence received a bachelor degree from Iowa State Teachers College (Cedar Falls, 1946) and in the same year son Gary was born. In 1947 he graduated with a Masters Degree in Botany from the University of Iowa. Daughter Susan was born in Iowa City in 1948. Clarence established Hightshoe Construction Company, building many homes in the Iowa City area including several award-winning homes designed by Architect William Nowysz.

Hunting, fishing, camping, golf, playing the guitar, and travel to all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Belize, Costa Rica, and Australia were outdoor pursuits he enjoyed with family and friends. He built, owned, and managed Coral Shores dance hall (1950's to early 60's) on the banks of the Iowa River (Coralville). He was a square dance caller for many years and was also a member of Old Capital Chorus.

In 2014, Clarence and his son flew on the Eastern Iowa Honor Flight to tour the Washington DC War Memorials, a day of much joy and camaraderie. His involvement in 1996 with his daughter's 5th grade class is unforgettable. On a wagon train enactment on the Old Military Road during Iowa's sesquicentennial celebration, Clarence and Alda (in period dress) prepared a chuck wagon dinner for her students as they got ready to sleep out under the stars. Clarence will long be remembered for his storytelling, sense of humor, and quick wit, and autobiography, appropriately titles Clarence, that chronicles his life story with emphasis on his military service in WWII.

Clarence is survived by his son Gary and his wife Joan (Ames) and daughter Sue and her companion Dwayne Farmer (Marion); grandchildren Kate Hightshoe, Jessica Rosenhamer (Brad), Tobin Hightshoe, Abigail Jackson (Jake), Quentin Stark (Kelly), Thomas Stark, and Christopher Stark; and five great-grandchildren. Four sisters; Helen Marine, Mary Seydel, Martha Schemmel, and Lorraine Turnipseed also survive him.

He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Alda and brother, Wayne Hightshoe.