Harley Wayne Wilson

  • Born: April 24, 1958
  • Died: July 2, 2019
  • Location: Des Moines, Iowa

Memorial Services of Iowa

4208 North Ankeny Blvd.
Ankeny, IA 50023

Tel. (515) 964-0592

Tribute & Message From The Family

Harley Wayne Wilson, 61, passed away Tuesday July 2, 2019 at Mercy Hospice in Johnston, Iowa after a hard-fought battle with colon cancer.

Harley was born and raised in Des Moines, Iowa. He grew up in Norwoodville and was proud of of that fact. He graduated from Saydel High School in 1976. Throughout his life he was an avid reader enjoying books from Louis L'Amour, Tom Clancy, John Grisham and Vince Flynn. Harley also loved horses and horseback riding. In his early adult years, he owned horses and lovingly cared for many others. He was also a lover, collector, and restorer of classic cars, owning many throughout the years. He enjoyed attending car shows throughout the Midwest and had a particular passion for Mopars, enjoying several at the time of his passing.

Harley and Melody met on a blind date at an Alabama concert at the Iowa State Fair arranged by their good friends Steve and Julie. They were married on July 2, 1988 and loved each other fiercely. Harley enjoyed spending time with his family on vacations, at car shows and at their beautiful home in Runnells, Iowa. They especially enjoyed traveling to sandy beaches together for vacations.

Harley started his career in sales while still in high school starting at Champion Auto in Des Moines in 1975 as their first employee. He worked his way up to assistant manager over his 17 years there, trading most of his paychecks for car parts. After leaving Champion Auto, Harley joined the sales team and then executive team at Seneca Tank. Harley was known among his peers as a hard worker and dedicated employee. During his 30 years at Seneca Tank starting in 1988 he was instrumental in growing their PTO & Hydraulic division. He took pride in all the accomplishments, accolades and milestones that his team accomplished along with the great relationships with the many suppliers and customers that he had the pleasure of working with throughout the years.

He is survived by his loving wife of 31 years Melody, his son Tyler Wilson and wife Alison, daughter Amanda Holloway and husband Jake, brother Jeff Wilson and wife Sarah, sister Joyce Tracey, and his first grandchild Charlie Wilson, along with many close friends. He is preceded in death by his mother Mary Townsend.

A celebration of life will be held for Harley at Great Caterers of Iowa, 1480 Sloans Way, Pleasant Hill, Iowa 50327 on Friday July 12th from 5pm-8pm, food will be provided. Anyone owning a collector vehicle is encourage to drive it in his honor to the celebration.

In lieu of flowers please donate to a charity of your choice in Harley's memory.


Condolence & Memory Journal

Harley was a great co-worker. We had many interesting conversations not only about work issues but also about cars and motorcycles. Harley was a talented man from which I learned much.
My sincere condolences to his family.

Posted by Rich Jorgensen - Des Moines, IA - Coworker   July 12, 2019

I have known Harley for a long time. He was quiet and reserved but occasionally would give you that little smirk smile. He was so kind and easy to get along with. Him and I had the same last name and in the same year of school so everyone thought we were related. I haven;t seen him in quite some time but have many fond memories of him. So sorry for his family for I am sure it is a great loss. Take care Harley RIP. Kathy Wilson Schnathorst Speer.

Posted by Kathy Speer - DES MOINES, IA - Classmate   July 08, 2019

Melody, so sorry to hear this news of your husband. Thinking of you and your family, peace be with you...

Posted by Linda Robinson - Ankeny, IA   July 07, 2019

Melody, thinking of you and you son during this sad time. Sending prayers for strength!

Posted by Brenda Bemis - Des Moines, IA   July 07, 2019

I was very sad to see this ornery and sweet soul had passed
I shared a house with Harley and Grover Kirkman until Grover and I married. He was so generous he would actually let me drive his Cor ette! I lost touch with Harley over the years but I smile when I think of him.my prayers are with you and children Melody
Forever in my heart Geneva McPherson hodge

Posted by Geneva Mcpherson-hodge - Three Rivers, CA   July 07, 2019

Although I did not know Harley, I remember how very kindly you spoke of him. My husband Dan went to Saydel with Harley and remembered him from school. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

Cindy and Dan McCleary

Posted by Cindy McCleary - Des Moines, IA - Friend   July 06, 2019

Sorry for your loss. Such a nice guy. Grew up in Norwoodville with him. My prayers are with his family

Posted by Brenda Kelley ( Verwoert ) - Desmoines, IA - Acquaintance   July 06, 2019

Thoughts and prayers for your family.

Posted by Megan Pyles - Des Moines, IA - Friend   July 05, 2019