John “Jack” Baumgarten, 85, of Tomah passed away Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019, at the Tomah Healthcare Center. He was born June 9, 1933, to Lyle and Marge (Fenske) Baumgarten.
He lived on the family farm near Tomah, until April 20, 2010, when illness forced him to move into an assisted living facility in Tomah. After graduating from Tomah High School, Jack worked on the farm for a few years and at several area cranberry marshes near Warrens, during the harvest season. He also worked for Sorenson’s Inc., for six years at their lumber yard and feed mills in Tomah and Warrens and part time at Taft & Conway Citgo Station in Tomah.
He then started his 34 year career at the Tomah Post Office; his first six years as a substitute rural carrier, then as a regular city carrier. He carried the mail on Tomah’s City Route 4 for 23 years and was secretary of Local Branch 2972, National Association of Letter Carriers. After retiring from the postal service, he worked as caretaker helper at Oak Grove Cemetery in Tomah, for eight years.
Jack was a faithful lifetime member of St. Mary’s Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Tomah, where he served many years as an usher. He was a regular blood donor to the American Red Cross and the Blood Center of Wisconsin. In 2008, he received a 23 gallon blood donation pin from the Red Cross. He was also a member of the Tomah Knights of Columbus.
Jack had a private pilot’s license and owned a Taylorcraft airplane for 12 years and was a member of the Civil Air Patrol. He flew on the British Airways Concorde in 1988. He also enjoyed off the road 4-wheeling in his CJ-5 Jeep, and was a member of the River City 4-Wheelers in the 1970s.
Jack is survived by one sister, Doris Hall of Tomah; four brothers, Bill (Tereza) Baumgarten of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Dick (Sandy) Baumgarten of Tomah, Bert (Cheryl) Baumgarten of Tomah and Tom (Lynn) Baumgarten of Tomah; he is further survived by many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews; and very special friends, Dennis Butterfuss of Tomah and David (Danielle) Butterfuss and their children, Jacob, John and Cody.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Lyle and Marge; a brother, Paul (Julaine) Baumgarten; and a brother-in-law, Oris Hall.
A Mass of Christian Burial was held at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 8, at Queen of the Apostles Catholic Church in Tomah. Monsignor Richard Gilles will officiate. Burial will be held at a later date at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery in Tomah. Family and friends were invited for visitation from 4:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. with a 4 p.m. rosary, Monday, Jan. 7, at the Torkelson Funeral Home in Tomah. Family and friends were invited for visitation from 9:30 a.m. until the service Tuesday at the church.
Memorials in Jack’s memory may be given to the Queen of the Apostles School Endowment Fund or the Neighbor for Neighbor Food Pantry.
The Torkelson Funeral Home of Tomah is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences are available at www.torkelsonfuneralhome.com.