Joe Skiles

January 19, 1948 - September 25, 2022

Visitation: Visitation, with family present, will be Wednesday from 5-7 p.m. at Anderson Funeral Home in Canton, SD.

Service: Memorial service will begin at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, September 29, 2022 at Canton Lutheran Church.

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Joseph “Joe” Skiles, age 74, died peacefully, Sunday, September 25, 2022 at Dougherty Hospice House surrounded by family after a courageous and hard fought 10-year battle with cancer. Memorial service will begin at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, September 29, 2022 at Canton Lutheran Church.  Visitation, with family present, will be Wednesday from 5-7 p.m. at Anderson Funeral Home in Canton, SD.  In lieu of flowers, honoring Joe’s generous spirit, memorials may be directed to the Canton Pool Fund or a charity of your choice.

Joe was born in Larchwood, Iowa on January 19, 1948 to Ellis and Fran (DeBaere) Skiles. Joe grew up on a farm near the tri-state marker northwest of Larchwood, attended school and graduated from St. Mary School in Larchwood in 1966. Joe met his first wife, Carol Kuhnert who also lived near the tri-state marker in South Dakota and they were married on April 6, 1968. They introduced to the world four children whom they raised in Larchwood and in 1976 moved to Canton where all the kids attended school.

Growing up, Joe helped on the family farm which became a lifelong passion.  Along with farming, Joe was quite the businessman. Within two years of moving to Canton to work for Dakota Fertilizer, he bought the business and built it into the success that it is today and is still family owned and operated. Along the way, Joe also incorporated a lifelong love of cars by opening Skiles Auto Sales in Canton which he operated for several years. Joe also dabbled in real estate, buying and operating several rental units for which family also still owns and operates today. He was a sharp and savvy businessman but most importantly, he was an honest businessman. Even with all those ventures, deep down, Joe was a farmer and when the opportunity arose to farm the land on the home place, he jumped at it. Through the years, the “business farmer” in him saw more acquisition of land all over Lyon County, Iowa and Lincoln County, South Dakota.  Whether it was in a combine, in a John Deere tractor, or a semi during harvest; Joe was happiest, especially when it evolved into a family affair with his children.

Even with all that business and farming history, Joe still managed to have fun. He owned and drove the Dakota Dragon mini rod in many tractor pulls and owned the Dakota Express sprint car that was driven by his brother-in-law at area racetracks all over the Tri-State area.  Joe could never sit still very long and was always “out and about” stopping in and visiting family, stopping for coffee somewhere with friends or entertaining at home with his significant other Elizabeth Rupp, or just driving around looking at the crops. As he slowed down in his retirement years, he spent several winters in Mesa, AZ where he met a whole new group of friends and extended family. Of everything in his life though, Joe was most proud of his children and his precious grandchildren. Of all his titles, “Papa Joe” was his most cherished.

Joe was preceded in death by his parents Ellis and Fran and oldest brother Terry and his wife Bev. Carrying on the Joe Skiles family is his partner Elizabeth Rupp; children Chad Skiles; Tiffany Skiles Reilly (Brendan Reilly); Shane Skiles (Jen Skiles); Devin Skiles (Miranda Skiles); and his grandchildren Raegen Reilly, Bergen Reilly, Camryn Skiles, Josie Skiles, Tyson Skiles, Easton Skiles, Sullivan Skiles, and Emersyn Skiles; brother Mike Skiles (Colleen), twin brother Jack Skiles (Jan), sister Nancy Underberg (John), along with numerous extended family, neighbors and friends.

His honest and giving self, his smile and his laugh, his teasing and practical jokes, his love and friendship to all he met and knew, will be the things we miss  the most. Now get back in that John Deere Papa Joe and get back to harvesting and never forget we all love you!

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18 messages have been left

  1. Jeff & Karen Reiter on September 26, 2022 said:

    As father, grandfather, partner and friend, Joe was one of the best, second to none. HIs personality was one that would always bring a smile to your face. He will be missed, but as we say “When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure. Share you treasures with those you love. And let those treasures bring a smile to your face.”


  2. Bill Overman on September 26, 2022 said:

    My sympathies to the Skiles’ Family for your loss.

  3. Dean Bossman on September 26, 2022 said:


  4. Tami Rikansrud on September 26, 2022 said:

    Skiles family, I’m so sorry. He was such a great guy & my dad loved working with him. I’m thinking of you.

  5. Gary and Rita Lemon on September 27, 2022 said:

    Our deepest condolences to the family. We loved Joe, as a friend we had some wonderful times together.

  6. Brian Robert Lind on September 27, 2022 said:

    Rest in Peace sir. My Greatest sympathy to all the family.
    Brian Lind

  7. Ken Sehr on September 27, 2022 said:

    Rest in Peace Joe… Sympathies to the entire Skiles family.

  8. Donna rummell on September 27, 2022 said:

    I am so sorry for your loss.He was a great man,father grandfather and friend.He always came to I hope to see me when he came to town.Loved to here about all his farming and family.I and said to here this.He will be missed.RIp my friend.❤️🙏🏻🙏🏻

  9. Donna on September 27, 2022 said:

    I am so sorry for your loss.we was a great friend father ,grandfather.I work at I hop and he always made a point to come and see me.I-use to enjoy listening all about his family and farming.Sad to here this.Till we meet again Joe Rip ❤️🙏🏻🙏🏻

  10. Jim and Patsy Stensland on September 27, 2022 said:

    Our sympathies and prayers to all of Joe’s family.

  11. MAC and Carol McEntee on September 28, 2022 said:

    our sympathy and
    prayers for your loss MCENTEE’S.

  12. Kathy and Jerry Keiser on September 28, 2022 said:

    Sorry for you loss of Joe–RIP

  13. Ken &Pauline (Roemen) McEntee on September 28, 2022 said:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this sad time!

  14. Terri (DeWandel) Ashbrook on September 29, 2022 said:

    I have not seen Joe for many years, but I remember him always with fondest affection. Taking after his own dad, he was always smiling, and sweet natured. It’s hard to express how sorry I am for the loss to his family and friends. He will be remembered in prayers. God bless.

  15. connie audrey greer on September 29, 2022 said:

    Joe was always the perfect gentleman and always will remember that about him. He called me once up in Canada after he had knee surgery (I think that was what he had) and told me he was just flipping through his address book and saw our name “Jinks and Connie” in his book. We talked for quite awhile and ended up with….see you in Mesa soon. I thought of this as soon as I heard of his passing. Happy Harvesting in Heaven dear friend.

  16. Marlene Rentschler Negus on September 29, 2022 said:

    So sorry to hear about Joe. My deepest condolences to his family. I have not seen any of the Skiles kids for many years but grew up a couple miles away in MN. What a beautiful tribute to him!

  17. Jack and Margie Schuyler on October 1, 2022 said:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you all! Many, many accomplishments to be very proud of.

  18. Jon Thorburn on October 5, 2022 said:

    My condolences to you all. I had many good times talking with Joe over the years. May the Love and Peace of the Lord be with you all now and always.