Sunday, October 17, 2010

Obituary: Bernard K. "Barney Morgan - Class of 1944

BARABOO - Bernard K. "Barney" Morgan, age 84, son of Bernard Erich and Etta (Gage) Morgan, passed away peacefully on Oct. 14, 2010, at St. Clare Hospice House in Baraboo.

He was born on Sept. 5, 1926, in the Richland Center area, and was raised on Madison's south side. He attended Madison Central High School, and upon graduation in 1944, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He served aboard the USS Gage and USS Marathon in the South Pacific and participated in the invasion of Okinawa, during early April 1945. On July 22, 1945, he was aboard the USS Marathon when she was hit by a one-man suicide torpedo. After extensive repairs the USS Marathon was pressed into duty as a minesweeper. He volunteered to serve with the "Guinea Pig" minesweepers until his discharge in 1946, when he returned home to Madison.

He married the love of his life Dorothy Jean Van Wormer on Sept. 27, 1947, in Madison, and they made their home Portage, Madison and Monona Grove, before moving the family to Waterloo, in 1963. Barney worked two full-time jobs for 22 years. He worked days driving truck for LCL Trucking and nights for the Oscar Mayer Company. He worked for the Oscar Mayer Company for a total of 47 years. After retirement from Oscar Mayer, Barney and Dorothy moved to the Lake Delton area. With time on his hands and a desire to stay active Barney returned to work at the Lands' End Company in Reedsburg, where he worked for several years.

Barney enjoyed the outdoors. He enjoyed spending time in the fall helping friends, harvest cranberries and hunting ducks and deer in the Babcock area. However, Barney's favorite pastime was fitness. He was passionate about fitness before fitness was "fashionable." He coached little league baseball for more than a decade in the Waterloo area, and for as long as his family can remember he always had a gym in the basement. It was common for Barney to spend his first hour home from Oscars every day "lifting his weights."

Barney is survived by his wife of 63 years, Dorothy of Baraboo; and his six daughters, Connie Morgan of Stoughton, Susan Morgan of Stoughton, Michelle (Joseph) Schwarz of Prairie du Sac, Melinda Morgan of Lake Delton, Jan (Butch) Galson of Sun Prairie, Jill Wholley of Fall River, Mass., and a son, Russ (Lori) Morgan of Gaston, Ore.; as well as 12 grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, Bernard Erich and Etta; and his brothers, Robert, Donald and Ronald; and his sister, Valerie "Jean" Gugel.

Visitation will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2010, at 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. at which time the funeral services will begin. Services will be held at ST. PAUL LUTHERAN CHURCH in Baraboo. The Rev. Richard Collier will officiate. Burial will follow at Oak Grove Cemetery in Portage.

The family would like to thank the staff at Golden Living Center, St. Clare Meadows, and St. Clare Hospice House for their compassionate care. In lieu of flowers, please honor Barney's life through memorials gifts to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation (

The Picha Funeral Home and Crematory of Lake Delton assisted the family with arrangements. For online condolences and information, go to

Originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal on October 17, 2010

Obituary: James Douglas Strand - Class of 1965

EVERETT, WASH./MADISON - James Douglas Strand, age 63, passed away, Sunday, Oct. 3, 2010, after suffering a brain hemorrhage, in Everett, Wash.

He was born in Madison on Aug. 6, 1947, to Herbert Allen James and Myrtle Helen Strand. Jim was a graduate of Central High School (1965) and Madison Area Technical College with a degree in architectural technology. He worked several years using his creative talent for Kitchen Mart in Madison. In 1978, he moved to San Diego, Calif., followed by Prescott, Ariz., working as a licensed general contractor. He was very good at remodeling homes and also built several doctor and dentist offices. His work rarely had to be advertised due to referrals. Jim's home since 1990, has been Everett, Wash., where he continued working as a licensed general contractor, running his own business and spent several of those years working with Fisher Development Inc. as a building superintendent. Some of his projects included the GAP store in downtown Seattle, Wash., as well as many Banana Republic and Old Navy stores all across the country - quite an unmatched talent! Jim will be remembered for his wit, sense of humor and fun loving, outgoing personality. He enjoyed returning to Madison to visit family and friends, especially in the fall when he could attend a Badgers football game.

Jim is survived by his wife and companion of 30 years, Patricia; daughter, Pamela (Dennis) Strand Zerkle; two grandchildren, James (Sheena) and Faith; a great-grandchild, Jackson; his six stepchildren; eight stepgrandchildren; and six step-great-grandchildren. Other survivors include a sister, Maureen (Jerry) Syverud of Temecula, Calif.; brother, Gary (Diana) of Madison; as well as many nieces, nephews and friends. Jim was preceded in death by his parents; and brother, Herbert Frederick Robert.

Jim's wishes were to be cremated. A gathering of family and friends will be held at Main Depot, 627 W. Main St., Madison, on Friday, Oct. 22, 2010, beginning at 4 p.m. If you cannot attend the memorial, condolences may be sent to his daughter, Pamela Strand Zerkle, 514 W. Madison, Waterloo, WI 53594.

"You will remain in our hearts and memories forever.

Originally published on the Wisconsin State Journal on October 17, 2010.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Obiturary: Henry B. Kleinert - Class of 1934

DALLAS, TEXAS/MADISON - Henry was born in Wisconsin, March 5, 1917, the second son of Bernhard H. Kleinert and Olena nee Rockne-Anfinson Kleinert. He grew up in Madison, Wis., graduated from Central High and attended the University of Wisconsin in music. He was initiated into Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia the honors music fraternity. He was also in pre-med and pre-law. Later, he was in graduate studies in psychology. He directed a popular orchestra out of Madison under the name Henry Haaks. On August 2, 1940, he married a lovely young lady, Helen Peck, of Spring Green, at Bethel Lutheran in Madison. Dr. Morris Wee performed the marriage service. Henry served on the staff of the Madison YMCA and the state YMCA Camp Phantom Lake, where he taught swimming, sailing and canoeing. In 1941, after a lot of planning, Helen and Henry planned on canoeing the entire Mississippi River. They sold their big Chrysler Airflow orchestra car and bought a Model A Ford for $60, canoe, tent, camp cook stove, paddles, etc. Donald Lovell, joined Henry paddling, and Patricia Burris, a seventeen year old friend, accompanied Helen in the Model A pulling the orchestra trailer with the camping equipment. They began their trip the first of June in Lake Itasca, the source of the river and ended the trip in New Orleans on August 19. Later, Henry served as an Artic Survival Instructor in the Army Air Corps in the Rockies, Canada, and Alaska. Gary, their son, was born in Edmonton, Alberta. After the war, Helen and Henry lived in Spring Green, where Henry learned about the seed corn business, with Helen's father, Harry Peck, one of the founders of Pride Seed Corn Company. Henry was active in the community of Spring Green, in in the Chamber of Commerce, president of the local development corporation, treasurer of the Big Hollow Lutheran Church, active in the Republican Party and other activities. Linda, their daughter, was born while they lived in Spring Green.

In visiting Dr. Charles Puls in Madison, Dr. Puls asked Henry if he ever thought of the ministry. After some laughter Henry said, "No". Dr PuIs said, "Why Not" Henry experienced a holy presence and he knew the Lord called him and also called Helen to be a partner in the Call. Helen had graduated from the university in 1940, but Henry had been in and out of the university but no degree. They moved to Fremont, Nebraska, where Henry attended Midland College, Central Seminary and supplied two Methodist Churches, Arlington, and Kennard, Nebraska until he finished seminary in 1953. He received a Call to serve as assistant to Dr. Puls at Luther Memorial in Madison, while attending the university graduate school in Psychology in order to go with Dr. Goud Wickey in the Board of Higher Education. Dr. Wickey granted Henry the scholarship for graduate studies. Dr. Wee urged Henry to continue the graduate studies by accepting the Call to Black Earth and West Middleton Lutheran Churches near Madison. Henry was the first pastor of both congregations. Then he became campus Pastor at Eau Claire and then Chaplain of Midland College in Fremont, Nebraska. He was then called to Mount Carmel in Minneapolis as senior pastor. Later as senior pastor in First Lutheran in Ottumwa, and then back to Minneapolis as president of American Bethesda Corp., a non-profit group which designed and built retirement communities. Then Henry was called to the suburban congregation, Grace Lutheran of Wayzata. He retired from Grace in 1981, and served Vision of Glory as assistant, Good Shepherd in Inver Grove Heights, Minn. In 1994 Henry and Helen moved to Texas to be near family. In Dallas Henry was Interim Pastor at Christ Lutheran on Lovers Lane, assisted at King of Glory and Central Lutheran. In December, 1998 Henry went to Grace Lutheran, a store front congregation in Ennis, Texas. He retired finally on July 18,2004 in the new church building which had been dedicated in 2004.

Henry was preceded in death by his two brothers, Eugene and Wilmer, son, Gary, in 2003; and his wife of 67 years, Helen in 2007.

He is survived by his second wife, Gerry Reeves Kleinert of Arlington, Texas; sister, Josephine Farrell of Madison, Wis.; daughter, Linda Cole of Colleyville, Texas; four grandchildren, Chris Kleinert of Dallas, Courtney Ullrich from Kentucky, Mike Cole of Austin, and Christy Davis of Keller. He is also survived by 10 great-grandchildren, ages 1 to 20 years old. Visitation is at RESTLAND FUNERAL HOME, Greenville Avenue in Dallas on Friday, Oct 15, 2010, between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. (972) 238-7111. Memorial Services will be held at Central Lutheran Church, 1000 Easton Road, Dallas, Texas 75218 at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct 16, 2010. Phone (214) 327-2222. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Central Lutheran Church Memorial Fund.

Originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal on October 14, 2010 (submitted by Sandie Sabroff Weber)

Note: Henry B. Kleinert's class year is based on information in the 1934 Orange & Black yearbook, where he is pictured among the graduating seniors.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Obituary: M LaVonne (Prescott) Schiro - Class of 1943

MADISON - M. LaVonne Schiro, age 85, passed away peacefully on Saturday, October 9, 2010, surrounded by her family.

LaVonne was born February 11, 1925, in Deerfield. She grew up in Madison, graduated from Central High School in 1943, and attended the University of Wisconsin, studying English and art. She married George Schiro in 1945, and raised three children, Mark, Jay and Monty. She spent her life as a devoted mother raising her three sons. She actively participated in many school, civic and volunteer activities.

She was an outstanding cook and seamstress, who enjoyed arts, crafts and sharing those gifts with her children and grandchildren. She worked at Randall State Bank and later became a licensed real estate agent. LaVonne was blessed with a giving nature that always put others before her; she was small in size but big in heart.

She is survived by her many nieces, nephews, and grandchildren, too numerous to mention, as well as a great-grandchild, a brother and a sister.

Her request was to not have a funeral but rather to have a simple celebration of her life. With that in mind we invite you to gather at Tex Tubb's Cadillac Ranch from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., Thursday, October 14, 2010, 2701 University Avenue, Lake Point Commons, Madison.

She possessed a fine sense of humor and sharp wit, which she exercised right up until the end. Of all of her accomplishments she was most proud of two of her three "boys." She will be missed deeply.

Originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal on October 11, 2010 (submitted by Michael Vahldieck, Class of 1968)