Martin Tuttle


Marvin Walter Tuttle, Sr. 84
September 20, 1930 – July 11, 2015

Marvin Walter Tuttle, Sr., 84, passed away July 11, 2015 at Mercy Hospice in Johnston surrounded by his family. He was born September 20, 1930 in Aurelia, Iowa, to his parents Augusta (Hasenwinkel) and Ernest Tuttle. He graduated from the Iowa School for the Deaf and attended Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C.
After relocating to Des Moines in 1950 and beginning a 37-year career as an employee of the Armstrong Rubber Company, Marvin married Patricia Dorsey, a long-time schoolmate at the Iowa School for the Deaf, on November 27, 1953 in Fremont, Nebraska. In their 61 years of marriage, they raised 7 children at their home in Saylor Township, Des Moines.
Marvin was renowned for his accomplishments and pursuits in Iowa high school athletics, especially in basketball, track and football. In 1949, he was selected to the all-state first team for Iowa high school basketball by the Iowa Daily Press Association after leading the state in scoring with a 23.6 point average. He excelled in track, consistently winning events in the shot put, discus and football throw. He was state champion in the shot put and held the state and Drake Relays football throw records for a number of years. He was twice named to the World Deaf Olympics in 1950 and 1954. After high school, he continued to perform at a high level in basketball for the Des Moines Silent Club, helping to lead that team to three national championships conducted by the American Athletic Association of the Deaf (AAAD). He was inducted into the Iowa High School Athletic Association Basketball Hall of Fame in 1976 and the AAAD Hall of Fame in 1981.
Later in life, Marvin was very involved as a parent and coach in his children’s athletic and academic endeavors. His children remember him as a respected and highly sought leader in church, community and civic activities. He was an elder of Calvary Lutheran Church. He was a Little League baseball coach and umpire. He was appointed by Governor Terry Branstad to serve as a board member on the state’s Commission of the Deaf in 1992, which helped to create and oversee the current Deaf Services of Iowa. He was later reappointed by Governors Tom Vilsack and Chet Culver to continue in this leadership role until 2004. He was honored by Governors Branstad and Vilsack with two Governor’s Distinguished Volunteer Awards for his service to the state.
Most of all, he is remembered dearly for his quick wit and his fierce devotion, love and pride of the accomplishments and diverse interests of his family. His children will miss the presence of this wonderful man but they are glad that he has achieved the most important goal of his life, living in peace with the Lord and the love of his life, Gwen Patricia.
Marvin was preceded in death by his wife, his parents, his sisters Verla, Gladys, and Mildred, and his brother Gerald. He is survived by his children Marvin Jr. (Lynn) of Centennial, CO; Patrick (Dana) of Winnetka, IL; Eric of Omaha, NE; Dolly (Mark) Murray of Council Bluffs, IA; Maureen of Des Moines, IA; Cathy (Troy) Murphy of Johnston, IA; and Michael (Dani) of Stoughton, WI, sisters Arleen Van Hemert of Johnston, IA; Deloris Rogers of Des Moines, IA; Lola Dilocker of Dakota Dunes, SD; and brothers Ernest, John and Ronald of Aurelia, IA. His 21 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren (3 more on the way) will miss his friendship, love and constant teasing.
A private family memorial service is planned for August 7, 2015 with a celebration of his life open to friends of the family later that day. Details will be announced later. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions in his memory be made to Mercy Hospice in Johnston or the Iowa School for the Deaf Foundation.
Thanks to Hamilton Funeral Home, Des Moines, Iowa and John Matthews for the information.

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