A service to celebrate the life of Ian Michael Kaffenberger, 21, of Bettendorf, Iowa, will be held at 12:00 pm, Friday, September 2, 2022, at Camp Shalom Christian Camp, in Maquoketa, Iowa. Family will greet friends on Friday, from 10:00 am until the service time at the Program Center, Camp Shalom, in Maquoketa, Iowa. The family welcomes all who knew and loved Ian and his family to join in the celebration of his life at the Tanglewood Evergreen Room, 4250 Middle Rd, Bettendorf, Iowa, later that evening at 6:30 pm. Ian passed away on Friday, August 26, 2022, in Ames, Iowa.
Ian Michael Kaffenberger was born on August 22, 2001, in Davenport, Iowa, the son of Aaron and Courtney (Conger) Kaffenberger. He graduated from Pleasant Valley High School in 2020. He attended University of Northern Iowa his freshman and sophomore years of college and transferred to Iowa State University as a junior where he was studying business.
Ian was an avid runner throughout his life and recently discovered a new found passion for lifting weights. He enjoyed hammocking with his friends and going for car rides in the country. Ian was an avid gamer, and always loved spending on-line time with friends on his computer and xbox.
Ian spent his summers at Camp Shalom since the age of 9 years old. He became an assistant counselor for one summer, and then a head counselor in 2020. He loved his time at camp and this is where he felt closest to God.
I want to tell the world about our beautiful boy. I want to scream from the mountain tops how wonderful of a son, brother, friend, and teammate he was.
From the day he learned how to smile, until the day he took his last breath, his beautiful face could light up a room. His smile as a young boy was so genuine. He was the happiest boy we had ever seen. He loved Buzz Lightyear, Superman, and Batman. He would karate chop the air while playing center field during baseball games as if he was the ninja warrior he dreamed of being. He was one of the last kids in our neighborhood to learn how to ride his bike because he preferred to run along side everyone that rode. He never walked anywhere….he ran. His favorite food has always been cereal. Rice Krispies.
As Ian grew into the man he was, he shared his happiness with everyone. His kindness spread like wildfire. He could talk to anyone and didn’t know a stranger. He was personable, engaging, enthusiastic, and always listened intently because he had a genuine love and care for everyone.
He was selfless. Always taking care of others. Always wanting everyone to be ok. He was encouraging, positive, and helped strengthen everyone into being the best version of themselves. He was motivating and uplifting to his family, friends, and teammates every single day he was with us. And I know he will continue to be there for everyone who loves him.
He was a best friend to many, but he was Aida’s “big brother,” Josie’s safe place, and our “Bubby.”
We created memories as a family that will carry us through our days. Nothing means more than the memories we make together…no matter the cost.
Ian had dreams. Had Ian been given the opportunity to make those dreams come true, he would have been one of the most creative, influential, determined, and dedicated people we all know.
He worked hard at everything he did. He never accepted anything less than his best. And even then, it sometimes wasn’t good enough. He would have changed the world. He still just might.
Our son loved life. He was a deep thinker…and so so smart. He could talk in depth about things for hours…and he knew what he was talking about. He wanted to be here with all of us. He wanted to be here with his cat Lilo and dogs Leonard and Lucy.
There is so much to share about Ian and I will continue to share with the world how wonderful and amazing our boy was.
But for now, he “Has gone the extra mile, where it’s never crowded.”
Survivors include his parents, Aaron and Courtney Kaffenberger of Bettendorf, Iowa, sisters; Josie and Aida Kaffenberger of Bettendorf, Iowa, grandparents; Kelly and Judy Conger of Bettendorf, Deb Kaffenberger of Chesapeake Virginia, and Mary Conger of Bettendorf Iowa. Aunt Olivia and Uncle Adam Schmidt of Bettendorf, Iowa, Aunt Kristina and Uncle Wes Golden of Clinton, Iowa, Aunt Kira and Uncle Travis Kottow, of Portsmouth Virginia, Aunt Nikki and Uncle Nate Olds of Geneva, Illinois, Aunt Samantha and Uncle Charlie Henness of Naperville, Illinois, and Aunt Sarah Campbell of Greensboro, North Carolina. Some of his best friends were his cousins, Ashlyn and Hanley Schmidt, Prushia and Leone Golden, Avery, Ethan, and Ainslee Olds, Jordan and Kingston Partee, and Parker and Dallas Henness.
He was preceded in death by his grandfather, John Kaffenberger.
In Lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Pleasant Valley Education Foundation in memory of Ian Kaffenberger, 525 Belmont Road, Bettendorf, Iowa, 52722.
Donations to Camp Shalom can also be made in Ian’s memory at http://www.campshalomia.org/
Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.McGinnis-Chambers.com