Charles “Chuck” Elmer Haffner, age 84 of Yankton, South Dakota was called to his Heavenly home on Monday, January 18, 2021 by his Lord and Savior. Even though his strong love of country and serving it was important to him, God had bigger plans for him.

Visitation will be 5-7 p.m. with a 7 p.m. prayer service Friday, January 22, 2021 at Riverview Reformed Church in Yankton.

A memorial service will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, January 23, 2021 also at the church. Military honors will take place in the church garden immediately following the service.

Due to COVID-19 concerns livestream will be available on Charles’ obituary page at Those attending in person are asked to wear a mask and practice social distancing guidelines.

Chuck was born July 14, 1936 to Elmer and Elsie (Hanson) Haffner at their home in the Marindahl Township. According to his mother, it was the hottest day of the year. The doctor told Elmer to take burlap sacks and pour cold spring water over them and hang them over the widow so what air that would come in would be cool.

He went to grade school in a one room school house and attended Irene High School where he excelled in vocal music, track and football. With his love for sports he believed every boy should be able to play football so while on the Volin School Board he was approved to start the football program. He led the team as head coach the first year and then assistant coach the second year.

He started dating the love of his life Jane Knudsen their freshman year of school. After graduation Chuck enlisted in the army and left for basic training at Fort Leonard Wood Missouri. He returned to marry Jane on August 29th, 1954 and together they traveled to Petersburg, Virginia and then Fayetteville, North Carolina. He spent the last eight months of service in Germany.

Returning home he farmed with his dad for one year and then carried mail in the Volin area for 15 years. They purchased a home in Volin and while remodeling he found out he enjoyed that kind of work. This led him to start his own construction company, which he operated for 15 years. He finished his working career at the Veterans’ Service Office in Yankton County. He worked there for 29½ years and was very proud of his commitment to that organization.

Chuck was an avid St. Louis Cardinals and Green Bay Packers fan and was able to attend some games with his family. Chuck was a devoted family man who will be truly missed by them.

Chuck is survived by Jane his wife of 66 years; two children, Steve “Syd” (Janet) Haffner and Cyndy (Rod) Anstine; 5 grandchildren, Terry (Sommer) Anstine, Keely (Sam) Hack, Chris (Angela) Haffner, Kevin (Wendy) Anstine and Bryan (Micayla) Anstine; 2 step granddaughters Stephanie Klasi (Brett Anderson), Alissa Klasi (Bob Tupper); a host of loving and dedicated nieces and nephews; great grandchildren Madison, Josey and Kennedy Anstine, Simon and Miles Hack, Cade, Axl and Maverick Haffner, Jade and Harper Anstine, Lily and Charlee Marie Anstine and Ella and Clara Klasi Anderson.

He was proceeded in death by his parents; in-laws Knud and Amelia Knudsen; brother and sister in-law Lyle and Betty Haffner; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law Audrey (Knudsen) Roland Peterson, Shirley (Knudsen) Leo Pullen and great granddaughter Mariah Anstine.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made in memory of Chuck to Riverview Reformed Church building fund, Navigators — a campus ministry, cancer foundations or your favorite charity.

Yankton Press & Dakotan

January 21, 2021