Roy Joseph Gabrenja

June 7, 2019

Roy Joseph Gabrenja, 94, of Dubuque, formerly of Rickardsville, Iowa, and Sunset Park Place in Dubuque, passed away June 7, 2019, at Manor Care, with his loving family by his side.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, June 11, 2019, at St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Church, with Fr. Paul Attah-Nsiah officiating. Visitation will precede services from 9 until 11 a.m. at the church. Burial will follow at St. Joseph Cemetery in Rickardsville.

Roy was born in Dubuque County on October 22, 1924, the son of John Gabrenja and Anna (Pizem) Gabrenja. Roy married Dorothy Schrobilgen on April 12, 1948. Together, they had three children, and shared 71 beautiful years together.

Roy farmed in the 5 points area of Dubuque County, and he worked at John Deere Dubuque Works for 25 years, retiring in 1985.

Roy enjoyed playing cards, especially rummy and solitaire, and loved trips the casino before his health and eyesight failed him. He fought a long, hard battle against numerous cancers over 14 years. His family and faith mattered most to him.

He is survived by his wife, Dorothy; his daughter, Diane (Bob) Meyer and their children, Kris (J.D.) Neal, their children, Tristan and Griffin, Grace Coleman and her daughter, Lillith Frisa, Keri (Jon) Griswold and their children, Owen and Olyvia; daughter, Sandy (Steve) Zalaznik and their children, Eric (Paige Ortiz) and their children, Ava, Julia and Clara Zalaznik, and Jake and Jimmy Ortiz, Jason (Stephanie) Zalaznik and their children, Jaylynne, Josie, Judson, Elsie and Millie, Ryan (Madde) Zalaznik and their children, Zayda Zalaznik and Jack Mulgrew; a son, John Gabrenja; and in-laws, Pat Hough, Thelma Roberts and Irma Schrobligen. He is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews.

He is preceded in death by his parents; a sister, Anna (Art) Heiderscheit; a younger brother; a great-granddaughter, Lauryn Griswold; mothers and fathers-in-law, Joseph and Margaret (Lex) Schrobilgen; and in-laws, Melvin Schrobilgen, Robert (Dorothy) Schrobilgen, Germaine (Aloysius) Schmitt,  Harlan Roberts, and Mary Kay and Paul Barth.

Roy’s family would like to extend a huge thank-you to all his many caregivers over the years. He had his favorites and you know who you are!

The family would like guests to dress casual and comfortable for services. The family requests no flowers, and instead that memorials be directed to the Hope Lodge in Iowa City to help house those fighting cancer.

Leonard Funeral Home and Crematory, 2595 Rockdale Road, is in charge of arrangements.


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