Wes Finch, 83(Photo: Courtesy/Special to Poweshiek County CR)
Wes Finch, 83, of Grinnell, passed away on Friday, November 10, 2017, at St. Francis Manor in Grinnell.
A funeral service will be held 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, November 15, 2017, at the Grinnell Christian Church with Pastor Dave Crow, pastor of the Grinnell United Methodist Church, officiating. Interment will be at Hazelwood Cemetery in Grinnell. A reception will be held at the Grinnell College Golf Course.
Friends may call at the Smith Funeral Home in Grinnell beginning 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday and the family will be present at the funeral home from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday evening.
Memorial contributions may be designated to Grinnell Regional Hospice or to the American Cancer Society – Poweshiek County Chapter and mailed in care of the Smith Funeral Home, P.O. Box 368, Grinnell, Iowa 50112. Memories and condolences may be shared with Wes’ family online at Media Wesley Finch was born the son of Ernest “Doc” Milton Finch and Golda Ellen (James) Finch on August 6, 1934, in Chariton, Iowa. He grew up on the family farm near Chariton in Lucas County, Iowa. He attended a one-room country school near his home until the eighth grade and graduated from Chariton High School with the class of 1952. While in high school he excelled in baseball, was selected captain of his team, and later was selected to the all-conference team.
Wes was united in marriage to Marilyn Rodda on June 29, 1957, in Pleasantville, Iowa. They were blessed with a daughter, Jane Ann and a son, Jeffrey Lynn. Wes began his longtime career in the auto business in 1959 as a salesman at Cars, Inc. in downtown Des Moines and later became sales manager at Gary Lilly Volkswagon in West Des Moines. In 1972, he began his career with Dave Wright at Wright Chevrolet in Carlisle as sales manager.
Wes and Marilyn moved to Grinnell in 1977 and purchased the Chevrolet-Oldsmobile auto dealership. In 1986, they purchased Grinnell Motors from Warren and Wilson Beaty and added Chrysler-Dodge-Plymouth franchises to their brands offered. Wes had a vision for a large-scale dealership and in 1990 he purchased the land and built the current Wes Finch Auto Plaza. In 1993, Wes purchased Thorndike Motors in Grinnell to add Buick-Pontiac-GMC to his dealership offerings. Time Magazine name Wes as the recipient of the 1992 Time Magazine Quality Dealer award.
Wes was past president of several organizations which include, Iowa Auto Dealers Association, Grinnell Lions Club, Grinnell Regional Medical Center, Grinnell Country Club, and National Auto Dealers 20 Group, and had served on the board of directors for the St. Francis Seeland Park Foundation, Hawkeye Life Insurance, and Grinnell Chamber of Commerce. Wes and Marilyn have always been strong supporters of the Grinnell community and Wes was recently honored by the Grinnell Chamber of Commerce with the Lifetime Achievement award. Wes was the “rock and foundation” of his family via his calm, honest, giving, understanding, and most importantly, loving demeanor.
Wes is survived by his wife of 60 years, Marilyn (Rodda) Finch of Grinnell; daughter, Jane (Ken) Haines of Grinnell; son, Jeff (Gina) Finch of Grinnell; five grandchildren, Josh Newman, Jessi (Mark) Staubly, Taylor (Tyson) Brandt, Jordan (Jordan) Finch-Smith and Morgan Finch; 3 great grandchildren, Ethan and Aurora Staubly, and Blaire Brandt. He is also survived by his sister, Donna (Neil) Smith; sister-in-law, Bobbie Finch; and numerous nephews, nieces and cousins. Wes was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Chuck.
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