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Evelyn “Evie” Surface

Posted December 10, 2014 in Des Moines West, Obituaries, Downtown, West Des Moines
Evelyn “Evie” Surface, 83, of Reinbeck died on December 9, 2014, at Iowa River Hospice Home in Marshalltown. A Memorial Visitation will be

Evelyn "Evie" Surface

Evelyn “Evie” Surface

held Sunday, December 14th from 2-4 p.m. at the Reinbeck United Methodist Church, 505 Spruce Street, Reinbeck. Funeral services will be held Monday, December 15th at 11 a.m. at Immanuel United Methodist Church in Des Moines with visitation one hour prior to the service. Burial will be at Highland Memory Gardens Cemetery.

Evie was born April 20, 1931 in Boone, Iowa, the ninth child of Dixon and Mary Benshoof. She graduated from Boone High School with the class of 1949. On April 9, 1950 Evie married Byron Surface. The couple later divorced.

Evie lived her life as a mission, serving as a pastor’s wife for 31 years. Her volunteer work within the church was extensive. In addition she served several offices in the PTA, Denison Community Library Board, the Human Rights Commission of Rochester, MN and was very proud to have earned her license to preach in the Iowa Annual Conference United Methodist Church.

However, the work that will forever define Evie is her work on behalf of the orphans of Korea and Viet Nam for Holt International Children’s Services. Evie travelled to Korea several times and to Viet Nam during the war, taking aid and assistance to the orphans. At home she travelled the state of Iowa giving slide lectures on “The Plight of Asian Orphans” and assisted many families with adoption proceedings. Her passion for this cause brought her into association with people of importance, including Senator John Culver. Because of her ties in Vietnam, the Surface family was able to sponsor the first Vietnamese Refugee Family to come to the State of Iowa following the fall of Siagon. United Methodist Bishop James Thomas once said, “When I think of Evelyn I think of a woman who is as a Mother to the World.”

The most cherished people in Evelyn’s life were her children and grandchildren. She will be lovingly remembered by her children Lynette (Jon) Starek, Lee’s Summit, MO; Sandy Surface (Dr. Paula Ahles), Washington, IL; Rev. Robyn (Rev. Terry) Plocher, Reinbeck, IA; Hope (Les) Wiley, Urbandale; Michael (Angel) Surface, Urbandale; Chris Surf, Mississippi; and Heidi Surface, Davenport; ten grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her mother, father and eight siblings.

The family has designated Parkview Manor, Reinbeck, Iowa River Hospice, Marshalltown and Holt International Children’s Services to receive memorials. Online condolences will be welcomed at


Information provided by:
Iles Funeral Homes
Westover Chapel
6337 Hickman Road
Des Moines, IA 50322

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