Obituaries for Wednesday, March 11, 2009

2009-03-11T00:00:00Z Obituaries for Wednesday, March 11, 2009Tribune staff La Crosse Tribune
March 11, 2009 12:00 am  • 

June "Elin" Agger | William "Bill" Burgess | Mildred "Millie" Drews | Virginia "Ginnie" (Sime) Ertel | Kari Ann Friar | Karil O. Kranzusch | Douglas "Hoss" R. Larson | Lucille (Wuensch) Monti | Robert "Bob" Wilson Pacl | Lyman Paul Toraason | Adrian Traff

Douglas 'Hoss' R. Larson

ONALASKA - Douglas "Hoss" R. Larson, 59, of Onalaska was called home by his Lord and Savior on Sunday, March 8, 2009, after a long and courageous battle with numerous health issues.

He was born in La Crosse on Nov. 8, 1949, to Lloyd and Mildred (Thorud) Larson. They later divorced, and Mildred married Andrew Noel. Doug attended La Crosse area schools except for a few years in the Mount Hope, Wis., area, graduating in 1968 from Central High School. He enlisted with the U.S. Marine Corps in July 1968, serving in Vietnam in 1969 and 1970. On April 13, 1985, he married Bonnie Loging.

Doug reconnected with some of his Marine Corps buddies about 10 years ago and enjoyed going to Gatlinberg, Tenn., Lubbock, Texas, and Green Bay for reunions, where a member of their platoon is honored posthumously by them for the families and friends of their fallen comrades where they rest.

Doug often credited his in-laws with his tenaciousness. Gramps gave him a father he felt he never had and the knowledge of the love and freedom that comes with farming. Grandma said "you can't get better by staying in bed being sick." Doug took those words to heart and fought through each and every obstacle that was thrown at him these 20-plus years, often to the shock and surprise of his doctors. Unfortunately this was not one of those times. Doug, always the Marine, met his foe, made his battle plan and won the war. This happened so fast he never had time to plan his battle.

He is survived by his wife of 23 years, Bonnie; a son, James (Kristin), and granddaughter Lindi; his special little life saver, Jazmine; and Tucker, the newest member of the family; two brothers Ron (Vicki) and Mike; sisters, Debra and Sandy; and nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his stepfather; brothers, Greg, Dennis and Norbert; and in-laws, Arlene (Doug) Loging.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at Trinity United Church of Christ, W4888 Harvest Lane, La Crosse. The Rev. Bruce Bartel will officiate and burial with military honors will be in the church cemetery. Friends may call today from 5 to 7 p.m. at Dickinson Family Funeral Home, 1425 Jackson St., La Crosse, and at the church on Thursday from 10 a.m. until services.

Doug, we love you bunches and bunches!

"Semper Fi"

Adrian Traff

HOUSTON, Minn. -Adrian Traff, 59, of Houston died Tuesday, March 10, 2009, at his home. Hoff Funeral HomesnHouston Chapel is assisting the family with arrangements.

Karl O. Kranzusch

ELROY, Wis. - Karl O. Kranzusch, 89, of Elroy passed away Monday, March 9, 2009, at St. Joseph's Memorial Hospital in Hillsboro.

He was born on March 18, 1919, to Arthur and Anna (Miller) Kranzusch in the town of Glendale, Monroe County, Wis. Karl grew to adulthood on the family farm and attended Sunnyside School, later graduating from Elroy High School in 1936. Karl was united in marriage to Arline Doms on Aug. 23, 1944, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, South Ridge. They dairy farmed for many years in the Elroy area. Arline preceded him in death on June 3, 2001.

In addition to his work on the farm, Karl served with the Wonewoc Farmers Mutual Insurance Co. as director and agent for 42 years, and president for 29 consecutive years. He was also a member of the EUB Church, later the United Methodist Church in Elroy, serving on the Church Board for many years. He was also the clerk of the Sunnyside School District.

Survivors include his children, Hollie (Gordon) Triebs of Onalaska, Pollie (John) Levenhagen of Mauston, Wis., and Dwight (Deb) Kranzusch of Elroy; seven grandchildren, Crysanthie Miller, Karla Randall, Bradley Levenhagen, Scott Levenhagen, Angie Bonfanti, Nicolas Levenhagen and Christopher Kimball; 12 great-grandchildren, Kalab and Kylle Miller, Abigial and Gavin Randall, Erin, Jonathan, Curry, Scott Jr., Jacob, and Joey Levenhagen, and Calista and Nathaniel Kimball; and a sister, Ardell Hill of Elroy.

In addition to his wife, Arline, he was preceded in death by his parents; a granddaughter, Brenda Levenhagen; three brothers, Kenneth, Arthur and Frank Kranzusch; and two sisters, Margaret Toppen and Inez Mitchell.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Friday, March 13, at United Methodist Church in Elroy, with the Rev. Mara Pehkonen officiating. Burial will be in Elroy City Cemetery in Elroy. Friends may call at Picha Funeral Home in Elroy on Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. and at the church on Friday from 10 a.m. until time of services.

For online information, visit

Kari Ann Friar

WAUZEKA, Wis. - Kari Ann Friar, 44, of Wauzeka died Monday, March 9, 2009, at Prairie du Chien Memorial Hospital of breast cancer. A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11 a.m. Friday at St. Gabriel's Catholic Church in Prairie du Chien. Burial will be in Wauzeka Cemetery. Friends may call from 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday, with a 4 p.m. rosary, at Century Hall in Wauzeka. In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund is being established in Kari's name. Kendall Funeral Service of Boscobel, Wis., is assisting with arrangements.

Robert 'Bob' Wilson Pacl

VIROQUA - Robert "Bob" Wilson Pacl at the age of 96 passed into eternal life on Monday, March 9, 2009, at Vernon Memorial Hospital.

He was born on Nov. 18, 1912, in the town of Henrietta in Richland County to Emil and Anna (Rott) Pacl. He was baptized by his grandfather and confirmed years later as an adult by Pastor O.J. Nesheim at North West Prairie Lutheran Church, where he held his membership. On Sept. 12, 1939, he married Gladys Olson. To this union two children were born, Marlene and Robert Wayne Pacl Jr. They farmed for 50 years in the town of Sterling at West Prairie, rural Viroqua, before moving into Viroqua in 1992. While farming he was active with the Tewalt School Board, town of Sterling, Vernon Electric Co-op, Vernon Telephone Co-op, Vernon Co-op Oil and Northern Wisconsin Co-op Tobacco Pool. He was recently selected for the Dartball Hall of Fame. He really enjoyed playing for more than 30 years on the West Prairie T-Bird Dartball Team.

Bob is survived by his wife, Gladys, of 69 blessed years; two children, Marlene Hansen of Viroqua and Robert "Bob" (Carol) Pacl Jr. of Wisconsin Dells; six grandchildren, David (Dani), Timothy, Brenda and Kevin (Brenda) Hansen and Bryan and Kristin Pacl; 12 great-grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren. He is also survived by three sisters, Ruby (Gene) Simonson and Betty Thompson, both of Viroqua, and Mary Clinton of Friendship, Wis., other relatives and many friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; a son-in-law, Dewain Hanson, in 1998; three sisters, Erma Bluem, Edith Rand and Eva Pacl; and two brothers, Ernest and Martin Pacl.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Monday, March 16, at North West Prairie Lutheran Church at West Prairie with Pastor Grant Van Lishout officiating. Burial will be in Viroqua Cemetery. Friends may call at Thorson-Reetz Funeral Home in Viroqua on Sunday, March 15, from 2 to 4 p.m. Friends also may call at the church after 10 a.m. Monday. The family suggests memorials.

Lyman Paul Toraason

BLAIR - Lyman Paul Toraason, 88, of Blair died Sunday, March 8, 2009, at Grand View Care Center in Blair.

Lyman was born May 27, 1920, in rural Blair to Lynn and Annette (Strand) Toraason. He married Lorraine Thompson on Oct. 17, 1945, in Blair. Lyman was employed with Northern States Power Co. for 36 years, retiring as a lineman in charge on Jan. 1, 1985.

Lyman is survived by his wife, Lorraine; three children, Ronald (Cynthia) Toraason of Sammamish, Wash., Diane Toraason of Berlin, Wis., and Larry (Dana) Toraason of Slinger, Wis.; five grandchildren, Brian, Lindsay, Erik, Inger and Claire Toraason; and two sisters, Ruth Reeves of Hartford, Wis., and Donna (Eldon) Friede of Blair.

In addition to his parents, Lyman was preceded in death by a sister- and brother-in-law, Lennice (Norman) Thompson.

Memorial services will be at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, March 14, at Zion Lutheran Church, with burial in the church cemetery, both in Blair. Pastor Mark Kvale will officiate. Visitation will be Saturday, March 14, from 11 a.m. until time of services at the church.

Jack Funeral Home in Blair is assisting the family with arrangements.

Lucille (Wuensch) Monti

Lucille (Wuensch) Monti, 95, of La Crosse, passed away Monday, March 9, 2009, at Onalaska Care Center.

She was born in La Crosse on April 15, 1913, to William and Francis (Kreibich) Wuensch. She married Ervin Monti in La Crosse on Oct. 6, 1934. He preceded her in death Feb. 9, 1973. Lucille loved to spend time with her grandchildren and play golf. She also enjoyed following the Milwaukee Brewers and Green Bay Packers.

She is survived by her daughter, Kay (Paul) Schneider of Holmen; one sister, Eileen Howly of La Crosse; sister-in-law, Joyce Wuensch of La Crosse; grandson, Peter (Lisa) Schneider of Onalaska; granddaughter, Teri (Patrick) Kocourek of Chanhassen, Minn., granddaughter, Krista (Dirk) Rettig of Waunakee, Wis., granddaughter, Mari (Brian) Erickson of La Crosse; and 10 great-grandchildren; along with nieces and nephews.

In addition to her husband, Ervin, she was preceded in death by one brother, Harold.

A Mass Of Christian Burial will be at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 14, at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in La Crosse. The Rev. Leo Schneider will officiate. Burial will follow in the Catholic Cemetery, La Crosse. Friends may call at the church Saturday from 9 a.m. until time of services.

Schumacher-Kish Funeral Home of La Crosse is in charge of arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Aquinas Foundation or Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church.

June 'Elin' Agger

FORT COLLINS, Colo. - June "Elin" (as she preferred to be called) Agger, 89, of Fort Collins died Sunday, March 8, 2009, at 3:55 a.m. Cremation will be conducted and no services are planned.

June "Elin" Williams was born Dec. 9, 1919, in Oak Park, Ill., to Abraham and Elizabeth Williams. She grew up and attended school in Oak Park. She attended the University of Illinois in Champaign, Ill., for two years, where she met Howard Agger in 1939. They were married in Lawton, Okla., on Jan, 17, 1942. They made their homes in several places during World War II and then settled in the Chicago area until Howard retired to Holmen near La Crosse, prior to moving to Fort Collins 18 years ago.

Besides her children and her husband, art was Elin's life. She was an accomplished artist in several mediums - oil, watercolor, textiles, metal and wood. Some of her work was shown and sold at the Chicago Art Institute. After moving to Holmen, she specialized in copper sculpture of wild flowers, which were featured in such places as the gift shops at The Chicago Botanical Gardens and the Morton Arboretum.

She is survived by her husband, Howard; her daughter, Dale Agger of Fort Collins; her sons William Agger of La Crosse and David Agger of Fort Worth, Texas; and three grandsons, Todd, Sean and Jens Agger; plus one great-grandson on the way. Her brother, Richard Williams, resides in Lake Forest, Ill.

She was preceded in death by her parents and sister, Betty.

Please visit to sign the guestbook and express your thoughts and memories of Elin.

Virginia 'Ginnie' (Sime) Ertel

VIROQUA - Virginia "Ginnie" (Sime) Ertel, 84, passed away Monday, March 9, 2007, at Richland Medical Center in Richland Center, Wis.

She was married to the late Kermit Sime for 25 years and together they farmed in Crawford County. Upon Kermit's death, she married Bill Ertel, and they were married for 37 years. They lived in Viroqua and Tempe, Ariz.

Ginnie will always be remembered for her artistic skills, her oil paintings adorn the walls of many homes in southwest Wisconsin.

Survivors include two daughters, Bonnie Brockway of Tempe, Ariz., and Carol "Cookie" Damman (special friend Rick Bury) of La Crosse; one son, K. Terry Sime (Kathy) of Richland Center; two stepsons, Gary Ertel (Doris) of Hillpoint, Wis., and John Ertel (Gail) of Custer, S.D.; one sister, Ruth (Jim) Curtis of Ontario; and two brothers, David Dowell (Charlotte) of Iowa, and Paul, unknown; seven grandchildren, Paul Brockway of Arizona, Vicki Bankes (Terry) of Ferryville, Mark Brockway (Lorraine) of Port St. Lucia, Fla., Bethany Beightol (Tom) of Brown Deer, Wis., JoEllen Zitzner (Tim) of Viroqua, Bradley Sime (Karla) of Holmen and Kelcie Fortney (Hassan) of Viroqua; three step-grandchildren, Jason Ertel, Jarrod Ertel and Jocelynn Wilson; 21 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her first husband, Kermit; her second husband, Bill; one brother, John; and one sister, Shirley.

The family will honor "Ginnie's" wishes for cremation. A memorial service will be held at Vosseteig-Larson Funeral Home, 123 W. Decker St. (Hwy. 56), Viroqua, at 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 13. Friends may call from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday at Vosseteig-Larson Funeral Home to visit with the family.

Online condolences may be offered at

Vosseteig-Larson Funeral Home of Viroqua is serving the family.

William 'Bill' Burgess

MELROSE - William "Bill" Burgess, 83, of Melrose died Saturday, March 7, 2009, at Black River Memorial Hospital in Black River Falls. Services will be at 2 p.m. March 29 at St. James Presbyterian Church in Tower, Minn. Buswell Funeral Home of Black River Falls is assisting with arrangements. Online condolences may be offered at

Mildred 'Millie' Drews

ONALASKA - Mildred "Millie" Drews of Onalaska died Sunday, March 8, 2009, at Onalaska Care Center.

The youngest of five children, Millie was born on the Fourth of July in Oakdale, Wis., to Fredrick and Hattie (Humboldt) Roder and graduated from Tomah High School. She then attended secretarial school and spent many years working as a secretary in the Milwaukee area. She married Herbert "Herb" Drews, her husband of 72 years, on Feb. 3, 1937. Millie told anyone who would listen how much she still loved "my Herb."

She and Herb lived in Milwaukee, Brookfield, and Elm Grove, Wis., for most of their married life. For many years Millie was an active member of the Order of Eastern Star and other women's organizations in the Milwaukee area. In 2004, Millie and Herb moved to Onalaska to be closer to their daughter, Barb, and their grandchildren.

In addition to her husband, Herbert, she is survived by a daughter, Barbara L. Myers of Onalaska; two granddaughters, Allison (Bryan) Collins of Onalaska and Megan (Bjorn) Broten of Holmen; a cousin, Pat (Leroy) Christensen of Tomah; a sister-in-law, Doris Kamperschroer; two brothers-in-law, George Birkholz and Rueben Birkholz; and her beloved cat, "Petunia."

Millie was preceded in death by her parents; a sister, Lucille Forster; and three brothers, Gardie, Alvin and Vilas Roder.

Funeral services will be at 10:30 a.m. Friday, March 13, at English Lutheran Church, 1509 King St., La Crosse, with the Revs. Mark Solyst and Duane Baardseth officiating. Burial will follow in Oak Grove Cemetery, Tomah. Friends and family may call at the church on Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. and on Friday from 10 a.m. until time of services.

Memorials may be given to Coulee Region Humane Society.

Schumacher-Kish Funeral Home of La Crosse is assisting the family.

Millie's family would like to thank her dedicated and compassionate care providers of the Onalaska Care Center.

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