Lawrence Van Arkel, 70, of Oskaloosa passed away Monday morning, March 21, 2016, at the MHP Hospice Services Serenity House.

Lawrence Edward Van Arkel, son of John Cornelius and Kathryn (Gruber) Van Arkel, was born June 24, 1945, in Oskaloosa, Iowa. He was a 1963 graduate of Oskaloosa High School. He was first employed as a truck driver. He married Dixie Lee Van Genderen June 30, 1972, at the Eddyville Wesleyan Church. It was that year that he also joined the Oskaloosa Police Force. After a heart attack in 1982, he retired from the force as a captain. He later resumed truck driving and also drove a school bus for the Oskaloosa School System, retiring in 2010.

Lawrence was always a shutter bug, taking 100s of photos on family vacations. In 1991, his hobby turned into a small business. Van Arkel Photography specialized in speedway photos at Oskaloosa, Eddyville, Eldon and Bloomfield; this was when he was given the nickname, Sparkle Van Arkel. He also took photos for the Eddyville Band and numerous weddings. Lawrence’s other hobbies included camping, NASCAR Racing, riding his many motorcycles and his most prized possession, his 2002 5.4 Ford Boss Show Truck. Maintaining his vehicles and wood working were some of Lawrence’s other skills and he built many pieces for his wife and daughters. The light-of-his-life and apple-of-his-eye was his only grandchild, Miranda Leora.

Lawrence’s family includes his wife, Dixie, of 43 years; his daughters: Danielle Van Arkel of Grimes, IA and Dee Dee (Eric) Lehigh of Eddyville, IA; his granddaughter, Miranda Leora Lehigh; and a sister, Connie (Jack) Asher of Knoxville.

In addition to his parents, Lawrence was preceded in death by his brothers: Charles and Richard Van Arkel.

Funeral Services for Lawrence will be held at 10 a.m., Thursday, March 24, at Garland-Van Arkel-Langkamp Funeral Chapel. Burial will be in Highland Cemetery near Eddyville. Visitation will begin at noon, Wednesday, at funeral chapel; the family will greet visitors from 5-7 p.m. Memorials may be made in his name to the family.

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