Max B. Harkins

May 13, 1919December 27, 2013

Max B. Harkins, 94, of Davenport, passed away Friday, December 27, 2013 at the Clarissa Cook Hospice House Bettendorf.

Funeral services will be 11:30AM Friday (1/3) at the Runge Mortuary. Visitation is Friday morning 9:30AM until the service time. Burial will follow in Rose Hill Cemetery Buffalo, IA. Memorials may be made to St Mark Lutheran Evangelical Church Davenport or the Walcott American Legion. On line condolences may be shared at

Max was born May 13, 1919 in Treynor, IA to Harry & Alma (Albers) Harkins. The family moved to the Durant area when Max was two and he attended rural Hazeldale & Patterson Schools in Muscatine County where he was top student. Max served in the US Army from 1942 – 1945 as a combat infantry section leader seeing action in the Bulge, Rhine Crossing, & Central Europe. His service earned him a Bronze Star for valor in combat.

Max was united in marriage to Helen Ellison on June 9, 1951 in Rochester, MN. She preceded him in death on September 8, 2009. Following his military duty, Max became an insurance agent and opened Harkin’s Insurance Agency which he operated for 41 years retiring in 1987.

Max was a long time member of St. Mark Luther Church, Davenport, the QC Times Plus Sixty Club, Past Commander & life Member of the VFW Buffalo, IA, & the Walcott American Legion where he served on the honor guard. He was former member of the Life Insurance underwriters, Chamber of Commerce, Community Club, Elks, & Moose.

Survivors include a son Ken (Polly McDowell) Harkins, Davenport; 2 daughters Ruth Ann (Tom) Gianneschi, Maui, HI, & Lisa (Don) Jiran, Coeur d’Alene, ID; Granddaughters Casey Calhoun, Acworth, GA, Susie (Guy) Ford, Columbia, MO, & Jennifer (Ken) Matic, Pueblo, CO; 4 great grandchildren; a brother Howard Harkins, Davenport; & many nieces & nephews.

Max was preceded in death by his parents, wife Helen, daughter Anita, grandson Christopher, 3 brothers, 2 sisters, & his beloved Yorkie Emmy.


  • Visitation Friday, January 3, 2014
  • Funeral Service Friday, January 3, 2014

Max B. Harkins

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La Donna Carman

February 21, 2014

Ruth Ann, Lisa, and Ken,
I am sorry to hear about Uncle Burnel. I was going through a box, which contained several letters from my family over the years while I was in the military.
As I sorted, I was able to see how connected our families were over the years. Ma wrote about picking up Aunt Helen to head for a yard sale, or Ma and Dad were planning to have dinner with Aunt Helen and Uncle Burnel at the Moose Club or some other location. Seemed like there wasn't too many letters that did not contain some information about how my Aunt and Uncle were doing.
Then, I saw a letter I forgotten I had. Uncle Burnel had written to me. He wrote to tell me how proud he was of me to join the military. I'm sure my reaction was no different than the first time, my heart soared! I will cherish that letter always!
There are some many memories connected to those times that Ma and Dad would go up to Aunt Helen's & Uncle Burnel's house! There was a round table in the kitchen where everyone gathered, and the laughter they generated sounded like thunder! Aunt Helen and Ma would laugh until they cried. Dad would chew on a put out cigar and call Uncle Burnel "Henry". Out the cards would come and hours would pass with coffee flowing and jokes being told!
I'm sure as Uncle Burnel was leaving you, Dad, Ma, and Aunt Helen were around the table shouting, "Deal Burnel in!"

He will be truely missed.
May peace be with you and your family.
La Donna Owens-Carman

Doug Conklin & Family

January 3, 2014

Ken & Family: Can't tell you how sorry I am to hear of your Father's passing. He was a sweet, super fella. I know he'll be missed. We're all better off for knowing him and having had him in our lives!!

The Dalldorfs

January 3, 2014

Buff: We just wanted to express our condolences on the loss of your father. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Tom Bracey

January 2, 2014

Lisa. Our thoughts and prayers. We are sorry for your loss. I read your father's obituary and he truly was a remarkable guy. Sincerely, Tom and Connie Bracey

The Kaufmann's

January 2, 2014

Ken & Family,

I am sorry to hear about your fathers passing. It sounds like he lived a full and accomplished life.

Tanika Dorathy

January 1, 2014

What a sweet man! He will definitely be missed!

Pauline Hubbard / bieneman

January 1, 2014

Lisa I'm very sorry to hear of Uncle Max passing. My thoughts and prayers will be with you and your family.

December 31, 2013

Ruth Ann, Lisa, and Ken,

Nancy and I wish to extend our heartfelt sympathies and prayers to you during this difficult time. Your father was the best neighbor anyone could ever hope to have. My last visit with him was shortly after the passing of your sister Anita. As usual, I found him outside patching holes in his driveway. He was always busy around the house. At least he was not up on the ladder.
We regret that we will not be able to visit with you in person. We will be in Milwaukee on Friday for the funeral of my 2nd oldest brother who just passed away form pancreatic cancer. We will honor your dad with our thoughts and prayers on that day also.

God Bless,
Rich and Nancy Toohill

December 31, 2013

Lisa, I was shocked and saddened to hear about your dad. I will be praying for you during this time. It was an honor to have known Max and a privilege to care for him. Love you Lisa!
Ondrea Zink

Patti K

December 31, 2013

Max will be missed. I feel blessed to be a small part of his great life. I will always remember him with a smile. I mostly enjoyed our lunch dates reminiscing war stories and all the wonderful memories of he and Helen's life together. You'll always be in my heart. Love always, Patti