Dean M. Larson

Dean M. Larson

1942 – 2023


BATTLE CREEK - Dean M. Larson, 80, of Battle Creek (formerly of Ida Grove), departed this life on Oct. 5, 2023, shortly before his 81st birthday, at the Willow Dale Wellness Village of Battle Creek. A Memorial Service will be held at 10:30 a.m., Friday, Oct. 20, 2023, at the Ida Grove Methodist Church of Ida Grove. Morris Hurd will officiate. The Christensen-Van Houten Funeral Home of Ida Grove is in charge of the funeral arrangements. Condolences may be sent online at

Dean was born on Oct. 10, 1942, in Omaha, Nebraska, the first child of Donald Maxwell Larson and Virginia Orfield Larson. 

 Dean grew up in Denver, Colorado, graduating from Cherry Creek High School where he served as editor of the school’s newspaper and was a member of the debate team. Those activities prepared Dean well for his future career in law and academia.

 Dean earned a BA in Economics from the University of Denver, a Juris Doctor degree from Northwestern University in Chicago, a Master of Science in Business Administration from the University of Wyoming in Laramie and a PhD in Business Administration with emphasis on Business-Government relations from American University in Washington, D.C.

 Dean married Netta Bell Girard in Riverton, Wyoming, in 1969 where they both practiced law. After receiving his PhD in 1972, Dean made four separate trips behind the Iron Curtain, visiting every Communist country except Albania. This gave Dean an excellent background in Communism and inspired him to run as a Democratic Candidate for the U.S. Senate from Wyoming, but lost in the party’s primary.

When Netta Bell and Dean divorced in 1978, Dean returned to Denver where he continued his law practice and was an adjunct professor at the University of Denver’s graduate School of Business Administration.

 With the European Communist nations’ governments collapsing, Dean saw the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the citizens of Eastern Europe by teaching an economic alternative to Communism. From 1992 to 2000, Dean taught in Bratislava, Czechoslovakia; Wroclaw, Poland; Rezekne, Latvia; Kaunas, Lithuania; Tallinn, Estonia and Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic. 

Dean was extremely proud of his book, The Modern Exodus “Transformation and Renewal in the Desert of Post-Communism,” published in 2002. It remains a great blessing that God opened the doors for Dean to teach in Post-Communist Europe.

 Dean returned to the U.S. to teach in Newton and Des Moines, settling in Ida Grove.

 He is survived by his sister Mimi Larson (Dave Cochran) and his brother Bruce Larson (Susi Doyle Larson) and their children. The family is extremely grateful to Morris Hurd, Dean’s good friend since law school, who provided wonderful companionship, advocacy and spiritual guidance, and who saved Dean’s life more than once.

 Dean was preceded in death by his parents.


Services: Oct. 20, Ida Grove Methodist Church, Ida Grove

Christensen-Van Houten Funeral Home • Ida Grove • 712-364-2727



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