Cover photo for Val Sothman's Obituary
Val Sothman Profile Photo

Val Sothman

June 29, 1956 — February 8, 2020

Val Sothman

Val LaRue Sothman, 63, of Lewis, Iowa, died Saturday, February 8, 2020, at his home.

Val was born on June 29, 1956, in Atlantic, Iowa, the son of Lawrence Irvin and Doris (Peterson) Sothman. His love of farming stemmed from his childhood; always wanting to be alongside his dad on the daily chores. At a very early age it was apparent that Val was blessed with the gift of being mechanically minded. As youngsters he and his brother Vaughn milked by hand, before and after school, for the family’s dairy farm and enjoyed going fishing and hunting. He graduated from Atlantic High School in 1974, and then attended Farm, Power and Machine School in Fort Dodge, Iowa. After his schooling he took a job at DEKALB Ag Research in Boone, Iowa. While working there he met Susan Bennink and the couple later married on October 30, 1976. They were blessed with one daughter, Emilie.

In October of 1979, Val returned to his roots in Atlantic and started working for Dennis Phillips as a farm mechanic for Phillips Farm Shop and also worked his own land part-time. His love of agriculture drew him back to the farm on a full-time basis after 13 years with PFS. In October of 2004, Val fell off a ladder and broke his back. After recovering Val continued farming and worked as a hired man for Dave Bierbaum.

Val was a perfectionist and had the drive to work hard day in and day out. He had a liking for cashews and ice cream; frequently having a quart sized malt in his hand. He liked the company of his cats. Val was family oriented, and there was one constant in Val’s life and that was his daughter Emilie. She remembers great memories of being alongside him while he was working on the farm and in recent years him coming to visit her in the city and going out to eat. He loved his daughter with all his heart; she was his whole world and reason for living.

Val is survived by his daughter, Emilie Sothman of Omaha; brother, Vaughn (Cindy) Sothman of Colby, KS; nieces, Erin (Justin) Hurst of West Des Moines, Iowa and Vanessa “Liz” (Ara) Bartemes of Montgomery, Alabama; great-nieces and nephews, William and Chance Hurst and Nora Bartemes; and former wife, Susan Burke of Omaha, NE.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Lawrence and Doris Sothman.

A Celebration of Life service will be held at 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, February 12, 2020, at the Atlantic Evangelical Free Church, with Pastor Don McLean officiating. A time of visitation with the family will be held during the luncheon that will be held immediately following the service.

Roland Funeral Service is caring for Val’s family and his arrangements. Condolences may be left at

Val LaRue Sothman
June 29, 1956 - Atlantic, Iowa

February 8, 2020 - Lewis, Iowa
At the age of 63 Years, 7 Months & 10 Days

11:00 a.m., Wednesday, February 12, 2020
Evangelical Free Church - Atlantic, Iowa

Pastor Don McLean

Jolene Mitchell

“Live Like That” recorded by Sidewalk Prophets
“I Can Only Imagine” by vocalist Heidi Hinman
“Amazing Grace, My Chains Are Gone” by the Congregation
“Living Hope” recorded by Phil Wickham
“Well Done” recorded by The Afters

Dennis Phillips
Delwin Krause
Jon Metheny
Gary Weichmann
Dave Bierbaum
Kevin Peterson

The family thanks you for your kindness and prayers.
Please join them immediately following the service
for a luncheon in the fellowship hall.

James 1:2-4
My brethren, count it all joy
when you fall into various trials,
knowing that the testing of your
faith produces patience. But let
patience have its perfect work,
that you may be perfect and
complete, lacking nothing.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Val Sothman, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Starts at 11:00 am

Roland Funeral Service

204 E 5th St, Atlantic, IA 50022

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Roland Funeral Service

204 E 5th St, Atlantic, IA 50022

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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