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Gene E. Wilfer PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 06 September 2017 18:19

Gene E. Wilfer, 81, of Port Washington, died Friday, Sept. 1, of vascular dementia at Heritage Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Port Washington.
    He was born to Edward and Minerva Bates Wilfer on June 18, 1936, in Milwaukee and grew up in the Town of Trenton, where he attended West Bend schools.
    On July 20, 1957, he married Jacqueline DaRonco at Holy Angels Church in West Bend.
    Mr. Wilfer served with the U.S. Marine Corps in the Korean War and was honorably discharged after three years in 1956.
    “Two years ago, before he became ill, he went on the Honor Flight (to Washington, D.C.). That was a big and meaningful experience for him,” his wife Jackie said.
    A machinist by trade, Mr. Wilfer worked for E.R. Godfrey and then Russell T. Gilman, where he retired in 1997 after 30 years.
    After retirement, he worked for Custom Wire Technology.
    Mr. Wilfer was a member of St. Peter of Alcantra Catholic Church in Port Washington and sang in the choir for 48 years. He was also a member of the Jaycees, Van Ells-Schanen American Legion Post 82, and was a Boy Scout leader
    He was also known as the neighborhood handyman, his wife said.
    “He was always fixing up our house and if the neighbors needed anything — plumbing, electrical work, you name it — he’d come through for them,” she said. “And in the winter, if it snowed out, he’d plow everyone’s driveway before they came back home from work.”
    Mr. Wilfer enjoyed fishing on the Chippewa Flowage and hunting at Main Artery camp near Lake Superior.
His travels included visits to casinos and waterfalls, and he enjoyed playing sheepshead.
“He was just a people person. No matter who you were, he treated everybody the same,” his wife said. “He loved to talk.”
Mr. Wilfer is survived by his wife Jackie; son James (Kelly) of Plymouth; daughters Sandra (John) Schultz and Wendy Behling, both of Hartford; grandchildren Amanda, A.J., Jasmine, Harley and Joshua; four great-grandchildren; brothers-in-law Eugene (Shirley) DaRonco and Russell (Nancy) Hewitt; and  sisters-in-law Laura DaRonco and Claire Hewitt.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sister Joann Yaggie; and brothers-in-law John Larson, John DaRonco, Art Hewitt; and Irv Yaggie.
A Mass of Christian burial will be held at noon on Saturday, Sept. 9, at St. John XXIII Parish, St. Peter of Alcantara Church, in Port Washington. Father Pat Wendt will preside. Visitation will begin at the church on Saturday from 9 a.m. until the Mass.
Inurnment and military honors will take place at St Mary’s Cemetery in Port Washington.
Eernisse Funeral Home, Port Washington, is assisting the family.

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