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Death Notices
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 31 May 2017 18:20

Bernard N. Risch was not only an outgoing person, his wife Joyce said, but someone who came through for others.
“He loved to fix things,” she said. “If someone called up who needed help with something, he’d drop everything and go.”
Mr. Risch, 68, died from heart issues Saturday, May 27 at his Port Washington home.
 He was born in Sheboygan on Jan. 12, 1949, son of Bernard and Theresa Kirst Risch.  
On April 11, 1970, he married Joyce Weber at St. Mary Catholic Church in Lake Church, and the couple settled in Port Washington and raised four boys.
Mr. Risch worked at Allen Edmonds Shoe Factory in Belgium, and later in Port Washington. He retired in 2010. Over the duration of his career, he held every job in the plant, his family said.
“Bernie was a guy who could fix almost anything, and frequently would have machines in the shop fixed before the official repairmen could get there,” his wife said.
Mr. Risch also kept things loose.
“He was the biggest joker at work,” his wife said.
He enjoyed riding his candy-apple-red Honda Goldwing motorcycle, as well as gardening. He also enjoyed woodworking, and was a leader of that skill for the Knellsville 4-H club for many years.  
Mr. Risch was a member of St. John XXIII Parish in Port Washington.
He is survived by his wife Joyce; sons Peter  (friend Stacy Wagner) of Port Washington, Patrick of Colgate (friend Wendy Taylor), Scott (friend Kay Mueller) of Random Lake and Andrew (Tracii) of Cedarburg; grandsons Blake Bratcher and Eric, Austin and Matthew Risch; sisters Victoria Zollner of Germantown and Mary Jane Winter of Sheboygan; and sister-in-law Janet Risch of Sheboygan Falls.
Mr. Risch is preceded in death by his parents and brothers Arnold and Victor.
At 6 p.m. on Tuesday, June 13, a memorial Mass will be held at St. John XXIII Parish, St. Peter of Alcantara Catholic Church in Port Washington, with visitation starting at 3 p.m.. Father Patrick Wendt will celebrate the Mass.  
Burial will take place in St. Mary Parish Cemetery, Lake Church, at a later date.
The Eernisse Funeral Home, Port Washington, is handling arrangements.

Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 31 May 2017 18:19

Whether it was a room full of kids, or a room full of old-timers, Ernest “Pinky” Kellar always made himself heard.
“He sure knew how to strike up a conversation,” Myron Kellar, his oldest son, said. “It didn’t matter who it was with. He’d walk into a hospital waiting room and it would be quiet, so he’d ask someone, ‘Well, what are you in for?’
“He was friendly with everyone. I don’t think he ever had an enemy.”
Mr. Kellar, a Port Washington resident and formerly of Waubeka, died Sunday, May 28, of natural causes at Aurora Medical Center in Grafton. He was 90.
Mr. Kellar was born in Wilton, N.D. on May 3, 1927, one of 16 children of Charles and Louisa Koch Kellar.  
He enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served as a seaman first class on the USS LaSalle before being discharged in 1946.
On May 25, 1947, he married Evelyn Wilkens in Montana. The couple settled in the Newburg area and started a family, later moving to Waubeka in the early 1950s.  Evelyn Wilkins died in 1991, and Mr. Kellar eventually moved to Harbor Club in Port Washington in 2010.
He was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Jackson, and worked as an X-ray die repairman at A.O. Smith, retiring in 1979.
It was then he embraced his passion for fishing, whether it be on the Milwaukee River near his home in Waubeka, or on the Port Washington pier.
“He liked to fish and he liked to fish,” his son said with a laugh. “And he also liked to fish.”
Other favorite spots were near Castle Rock in the Wisconsin Dells, or in Alaska.
He was known to give away sinkers and lures that he made as gifts.
 Mr. Kellar also enjoyed gardening, tending to his vegetables, and also enjoyed training dogs.
Mr. Kellar is survived by his children Donna Schubert of Port Washington, Myron (Linda) Kellar of Port Washington, Marvin Kellar of Waubeka, Carolyn (William) Johnson of Sheboygan Falls, and Yvonne (Gene) Morauski of Oconomowoc; brothers Ted Kellar and Dennis Kellar of North Dakota; sisters Zoe McClintock and Elsie Tonga-Ofa of North Dakota; son-in-law Tom Bublitz of Waubeka; and nine grandchildren.
He is preceded in death by his wife Evelyn, daughter Janice Bublitz, and seven brothers and four sisters.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 3, at the Eernisse Funeral Home in Port Washington, with visitation at 10 a.m. Rev. Kenneth Mellon will preside.
Burial will take place at St. John’s Cemetery in Newburg, with military honors.
Memorials are suggested to Trinity Lutheran Church.

Carole Sepstead PDF Print E-mail
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 24 May 2017 20:37

Carole Sepstead of Grafton was a volunteer extraordinaire.
Mrs. Sepstead was Ozaukee County Salvation Army president, volunteered for the Red Cross, St. Ben’s Books, the Grafton Library and was an active member at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Grafton.
Last year, she finished putting together a pamphlet outlining what resources are available for shut-ins. They are distributed through St. Paul.
“It has already helped hundreds of people just in the last year,” her daughter Cheryl Roloff said. “That’s just a typical volunteerism type of thing she would do.”
Mrs. Sepstead died in Milwaukee on Saturday, May 13. She was 79.
She was born June 12, 1937, in New Berlin to Walter and Helen Butzlaff.
 She married Thomas Rohloff of Wausau, who preceded her in death.
She later married Sheldon Sepstead, who preceded her in death after 52 years of marriage.
Mrs. Sepstead worked as a dental assistant, bank teller, social worker for Racine County Social Services, child support specialist for Ozaukee County Social Services and for 11 years was the general manager of St. Vincent de Paul Country Thrift Shop in Port Washington.
As general manager, she was responsible for transforming a small thrift shop into “Marshall Fields on the lake,” a model for other thrift shops nationally. She and her husband Sheldon played Santa and Mrs. Claus at the Thrift Shop every Christmas, distributing gifts to hundreds of children over the years.
Mrs. Sepstead enjoyed spending time up north, gardening, reading, writing and cooking.  She also enjoyed living in San Antonio.
In her 20s, she won cooking contests. During her life, she made many meals for shut-ins and people who were ill.
“She would bring them chicken dumpling soup and her famous blueberry muffin. That’s the kind of the person she was,” her daughter said.
She is survived by her husband Sheldon; children Robert, Cheryl and Thomas Rohloff and Sean Sepstead; eight grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and brother Richard Butzlaff of Texas.
Besides her first husband, Mrs. Sepstead was preceded in death by two grandchildren and sister Ruth Ann Butzlaff.
A funeral was held Monday, May 22, at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Grafton.
Donations to St. Paul’s Lutheran School Tuition Fund, Grafton Public Library or the charity of choice are encouraged.

Warren Due PDF Print E-mail
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 24 May 2017 20:36

Warren C. Due, a former Port Washington resident, loved to fish on Lake Erie and in northern Wisconsin.
    “He liked to fish for walleye,” his sister Karen said. “He caught a big musky once, and that was his trophy.”
    Mr. Due, 53, died Thursday, May 18, at his home in Milwaukee. He was born in Milwaukee on June 28, 1963, to Alton and June Due.
    He graduated from Port Washington High School in 1981. He went on to work for Coplan Appliance as a delivery driver and then for Kennedy Hahn Appliance as a warehouse manager.  
    Mr. Due is survived by his parents of Elkhorn, brother Brian (Jill) of Milwaukee, and sister Karen (Bob) McLain of Dayton, Ohio.
    A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 27, at St. Matthew’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Wauwatosa. Visitation will be at 10 a.m. in the church.
    Memorials in Mr. Due’s name may be made to the American Diabetes Association.

Debra A. Schmitz PDF Print E-mail
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 24 May 2017 20:36

Debra A. Schmitz died of cancer Monday, May 22, at The Kathy Hospice in West Bend. The former Port Washington resident was 57.
“She had a good sense of humor and was loved by many people,” her brother Dave Schmitz said. “She also loved everything about the Green Bay Packers. She was a shareholder.”
Ms. Schmitz was born Nov. 7, 1959, in Port Washington, daughter of Jerome and Josephine Fechter Schmitz.  
Ms. Schmitz grew up on North Webster Street and graduated in 1978 from Port Washington High School, where she enjoyed music and band. She was a member of the Windjammers Drum and Bugle Corps and the Pioneer Drum and Bugle Corps from 1973 until 1979.  
“The camaraderie with other people in the band meant a lot,” her brother said. “She had a friend in the band that went back to first grade and lasted the rest of her life.”
In 1983, Ms. Schmitz received her bachelor’s of science degree in nursing from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she also received her master’s degree in 1998.  
For the last 17 years, she was a clinical nursing instructor at the Moraine Park Technical College campuses in southeastern Wisconsin. She taught and supervised junior and senior nursing students in medical, surgical and rehabilitation hospital settings.
Prior to her teaching, she was a registered nurse at hospitals in Milwaukee, including Sacred Heart Rehabilitation, St. Joseph’s, St. Michael’s and St. Mary’s.  
Throughout the 1990s, Ms. Schmitz was also an emergency medical technician, an advanced cardiac life support transportation nurse and an operations manager for Vital Care Ambulance Service of West Bend.
She was a member of Phi Kappa Phi, the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians, the UWM Alumni Association and the Wisconsin Emergency Medical Service Association.
Ms. Schmitz loved animals, her family said. Her pride and joy were her golden retrievers Rudy and Hogan. She volunteered with golden retriever rescue groups and enjoyed dog camps like the Dog Scouts of America.
“They got an actual bandana and earned merit badges, just like a Boy Scout would,” her brother said of his sister and her dogs. “She was avid at doing this several times a year.”
Ms. Schmitz is survived by her brothers Dave (Betsy) Schmitz of Saukville and Dennis (Connie) Schmitz of Random Lake; her partner Martha Garske of Wauwatosa; and her friends Marge Spieth, Barb Theisen and Pat Hrobsky.
 Ms. Schmitz was preceded in death by her parents.
Funeral services will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 30, at Poole Funeral Home in Port Washington. Deacon Ralph Kornburger will preside. Visitation begins at 4 p.m.
Interment will be at St. Augustine Catholic Cemetery in the Town of Trenton.
Memorials to the Wisconsin Humane Society of Ozaukee County are suggested.

Laura Petersen PDF Print E-mail
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 24 May 2017 20:35

Laura Gail Petersen, a former resident of Port Washington, Grafton and Fredonia, took pride in sharing her creativity with others through her homemade cards, letters, and beaded jewelry.
    “She had the biggest heart of any person I know and she loved life,” her sister Julie Hinkens said. “She enjoyed expressing herself with handwritten notes and sharing her beaded jewelry with impoverished children abroad.”
    Ms. Petersen, 60, died Thursday, May 4, at Hilltop View Assisted Living in Fredonia.
    She was born on Oct. 2, 1956, in Portland, Maine, to David and Joan Hippard Petersen. She was raised in Baldwinsville, N.Y., and moved to Mequon with her family in 1968.
    She graduated from Homestead High School in 1973 and went on to work for Portal Inc. in Grafton. Where she was recognized with a personal achievement award in 2009.  
    Over the years she was gainfully employed at various local businesses, but was most proud of her job that she held at Colombia St. Mary’s Hospital.
    Ms. Petersen is survived by her brothers Christian (Lisa) of Beverly Hills, Mich., and John (Victoria) of Sun City Center, Fla.; and sister Julie (David) Hinkens of Appleton.          She was preceded in death by her parents.
    A celebration of Ms. Petersen’s life will be held on Sunday, May 28, from noon to 3 p.m at Veteran’s Memorial Park in Grafton.  
    Memorials can be made to Portal Inc. in memory of Ms. Petersen.  
    Arrangements are being handled by Mueller Funeral Home in Grafton.

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