Russell “PeeWee” Gohlke, age 88, of Neshkoro, WI, passed away on Saturday, June 26, 2021, at Patriot Place in Berlin, WI. He was born on April 6, 1933, in Omro, WI, the third child of Edward A. and Norma (Huenerberg) Gohlke. Shortly after Russell was born, the family moved to Neshkoro, where he would live the rest of his life.
After graduating from high school, Russell joined the US Army. He proudly served his country from 1953 to 1955 as a radio repairman stationed in West Germany. During his service, he had temporary duty assignments to Paris, France and South Korea. After being honorably discharged from the Army, Russell returned back to his home town where he settled down and began working at Speed Queen in Ripon, WI. On October 15, 1955, he was united in marriage to Deloris M. Wilde at Zion Lutheran Church in Neshkoro. He retired from Speed Queen as a welder in the maintenance department in 1993, after 40 years of continuous employment.
Through the years, he was active in several community organizations, serving in various roles and positions. Russell was a lifetime member of Zion Lutheran Church of Neshkoro and a member of the church choir for many of those years. He worked as a scoutmaster in the local Boy Scout Troops, as well as assisting in adult leadership roles with the younger aged Cub and Webelo Scouting groups from 1956 to 1997. During those years, he attended a 2 -week leadership course offered by the Boy Scouts of America at the Philmont Scout Ranch located in Cimerron, New Mexico. He also earned BSA Wood Badge Beads for advanced leadership training. But by far, his favorite activities were when he was working one on one with the scouts or groups. He enjoyed teaching them a variety of outdoor and survival skills including how to make their own rope and using different knots for outdoor tasks during camping outings. So much so that he earned the nickname of “Grandpa Knots” and was asked to put on courses for scouting groups outside the local area, which could include a working rope bridge that the scouts could actually walk across once completed.
Russell was also a lifetime member of the American Legion Post #423 of Neshkoro, striving to improve the lives of fellow veterans through the efforts of post activities and their locally renown summer “Brat Frys” held in town.
He enjoyed other such diverse interests as singing in the Community Choir, dancing, karaoke, 1950- 70’s Country music and his beloved Polkas. In his remaining years after retirement, he spent his time fixing, putzing and listening to Polkas at Interstate Lumber/Gohlke Builders in Neshkoro. He also enjoyed rocking, coloring and teaching checkers to the youngest of his family tree.
Those Russell leaves behind to cherish his memory include his 3 children, Robin (Louis) Herrick, Bryce Gohlke, Randy (Sandy) Gohlke; 9 grandchildren; Danielle (Mike) Durgin, Christopher Herrick, Brittany (Kinsey) Yaddof, Damon and Brandon Gohlke, Sierra (Travis) Dawson, Kayla and Brittany Dorman, Amy (Tim) Baker; 8 great grandchildren; brother, Phillip (Velta) Gohlke; sister, Carla (Ralph) Fredrick; 2 sisters-in-law, Sandra Gohlke and Darlene Seehaver; special friends, Gwen Hatch and Jodi Krueger; nieces, nephews, numerous cousins, many other relatives and lifelong friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Edward and Norma Gohlke; his wife, Deloris Gohlke on December 31, 2013; son, Jeri Gohlke; great granddaughter, Grace; brother, Wilmar Gohlke; his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Herman and Pearl Wilde; brother-in-law, Allen Seehaver.
A memorial service for Russell A. Gohlke will be held on Saturday, July 10, 2021, at 11:00 a.m., with visitation beginning at 9:00 a.m., at Zion Lutheran Church, 227 North State St., in Neshkoro. Pastor John Bumgardner will officiate. Burial with full military honors will follow the service in Zion Lutheran Cemetery in Neshkoro. Please visit our website www.wachholzandsons.com to send a condolence or to share a memory of Russell with his family. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be made in Russell’s name to either Zion Lutheran Church or to the American Legion Post #423, both of Neshkoro.
Wachholz and Sons Funeral Home
Sunset Cremation Center in Princeton
Serving the Family, 920-295-6631
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