Dr. James "Jim" Rixen

Dr. James “Jim” P. Rixen, 64, of Waukon died Monday, December 3, 2018 at Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon. Memorial services were held Friday, December 7 at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Waukon with Fr. Mark Osterhaus officiating. Burial will be at a later date at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Waukon.

James “Jim” Pagel Rixen was born January 24, 1954 to Walter “Red” and Helen (Pagel) Rixen in Waukon. Jim graduated from Grinnell High School in 1972 and attended Luther College in Decorah for two years before moving on to the Illinois College of Optometry in 1974. Jim married Debra “Debbie” Cetin August 20, 1977, and Jim and Debbie lived in Chicago, IL while Jim finished his doctor of optometry degree.

After earning his degree, Jim and Debbie moved to Waukon, where he joined the optometry practice of Dr. Frank Norden. After Dr. Norden’s retirement, Jim continued to run the optometry practice until joining Gundersen Clinic; he worked with Gundersen until retiring in 2017. He took great pride in taking care of his patients’ eyesight and equally enjoyed the opportunity it provided him to visit with people throughout the community.

Jim was active in many Waukon organizations, including Kiwanis, the Waukon Chamber of Commerce, Music Boosters and the Lions Club. He loved going to his kids’ school activities, spending time with his grandchildren, and cheering on the Chicago Cubs and Bears.

Jim stayed very active throughout his life, including participating in wrestling, football and track during his school days, and running, biking, canoeing and hiking as an adult. In the winter, Jim could often be found cross-country skiing at the Waukon Golf Course and competing in the Birkebeiner cross-country ski race in Hayward, WI. Jim also enjoyed traveling with his family to Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado and more recent trips to Prague, Rome, Copenhagen and Germany.

Jim is survived by his wife, Debbie; their son, Jonathan (Jenny) Rixen, and their children, Cael, Kiera and Isla Rixen; their son, Jordan (Erin) Rixen, and their children, Flynn, Fletcher and Elin Rixen; and their daughter, Molly (Jarod) Haberichter, and their children, Kayden and Korine Haberichter. He was preceded in death by his parents.

Honorary pallbearers were Jim’s eight grandchildren. Online condolences may be left at www.martinfunerals.com.

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