Monday, September 17, 2001

Obituary: Warren Seifert - Class of 1934

MADISON [Wisconsin] - Warren Seifert, a third-generation Madisonian, died Wednesday Sept. 12, 2001, at the Don and Marilyn Anderson HospiceCare Center, following a short stay at University Hospital, Madison, on the renal service. He was the son of Ida (Wiedenbeck) and Victor Seifert, husband of Marie Schwenn, and with Marie, parent of Kathryn and Paul. He found a second chance at happiness when he married Edna Speth Sandberg, his former college sweetheart, and this February they celebrated 30 years together. Edna presently resides at Karmenta, where she is "rehabbing" following a fall in late August. Warren was born July 31, 1916, and celebrated his 85th birthday jointly with his daughter's 60th at a party for all their friends and family in early August. Warren graduated from Madison Central High School in 1934 and was lucky to attend the UW for two years, as it was the Depression. He worked at the post office from 1940 until 1956, when he had a heart attack. There he courageously fought to start a union because of abusive working conditions and also began the postal workers' credit union. Before and after his triple bypass surgery in 1976, he was employed in various ways, including real estate sales with Badger and Starr Realty, as the owner of The Liquor Store Inc., and manager of Pleasant View Golf Course. Warren was proud to be a Democrat and liberal with a capitol "L" (he found it difficult to understand how so many of those he loved could possibly be Republicans). He argued intelligently and passionately for things he believed in, wrote many letters to the editor of The Capital Times in support of causes he believed in and actively campaigned for democratic political candidates, most recently working many hours for the Garvey campaign for governor. He kept up his mother's perfect voting record even after he could no longer go to the polls in person. Organizations that Warren belonged to and served in leadership positions for include the BPOE (Madison Elks Lodge No. 410), the TIP Club and the East Side Business Men's Association. He and Edna belonged to St. Stephen's Lutheran Church, a longtime neighborhood euchre group, the Elks bridge marathon and euchre groups, and the Madison Dance Club. His priorities were first his beloved wife and family, followed by playing cards with his family and friends, keeping up his reputation as a master punster, learning the ins and outs of his new computer and digital camera - and then there was fishing. Warren never caught much, but he sure did love to fish! He is survived by his wife, Edna; his daughter, Kathryn (Roy Schenk) Seifert and her children, Dave Parks, Steve (Dana Burmaster) Harkins, and Vicki (Christopher O'Brien) Harkins and her son, Ryan DeBolt, all of Madison; Edna's children, Barb (Jack) Kerttula of Watertown, Wis., and their sons, Gregg (Michaela Reimert) and Mark and his daughter, Kelsey, Robert (Ginny) Sandberg of Jamestown, N.C., and her sons, Joffre and Justin Schrandt, her daughter-in-law, Sandi Sandberg and son, Michael. He is further survived by his former brother-in-law, Roger Schwenn and sister-in-law, Helen Schwenn, and their children; and many Wiedenbeck cousins. Warren was preceded in death by his parents; his younger brother, Gerald; his son, Paul; his step-son, Jim; and Jim and Sandi's two infant sons. Visitation will be at RYAN FUNERAL HOME, 2418 N. Sherman Ave., Madison, this evening, Sunday, Sept. 16, 2001, from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m., followed by an Elks service at 7 p.m. Services will be held at ST. STEPHENS LUTHERAN CHURCH, 5700 Pheasant Hill Road, Monona, Monday, Sept. 17, 2001, at 2 p.m. Visitation, with coffee and dessert, will precede the service, beginning at 12:30 p.m. Cremation and burial at Forest Hill Cemetery will follow at a later date. Memorials may be made to the elevator fund at the Madison Elks Lodge, as Warren thought that would be "most uplifting" for all. Ryan Funeral Home 2418 N. Sherman Ave. (608) 249-8257

Originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal on September 17, 2001; submitted by Michael Vahldieck (Class of 1968)

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