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Ronald H. Haas, 78, of La Crosse, died on Friday, November 4, 2011, at the Bethany-St. Joseph Care Center.

He was born in Waterville, Iowa, on March 14, 1933, to Olger R. and Freda J. (Leiran) Haas. He was a 1951 graduate of Lansing High School. On March 17, 1956, Ron married the former Patricia D. Dammon in Caledonia, Minn., and they later divorced.

Ron served in the U.S. Army, stationed at Fort Bragg, N.C., during the Korean War. He was a past member of the Stoddard American Legion Post 315 for many years and was a member of Roy L. Vingers American Legion Post 52 of La Crosse.

Ron was employed at S.M. Supply in La Crosse early in his life. He then worked as a construction laborer for many years for Local 140 in La Crosse. He took great pride in the buildings he had worked on throughout his career such as Gundersen Lutheran Medical Center, St. Francis Hospital, La Crosse Center, and the Dairyland Power building. He was also a very active member of his local union. Ron was a gentle, kindhearted and friendly person who had many friends, he was known as “the Watkins Man” to many. He worked as a Watkins sales representative and distributor from 1963 to 2007, mainly in Vernon and La Crosse counties.

Ron is survived by his children and their families, Denise (Kurt) Bendel of La Crosse and their children, Jared and Elyse Bendel; Tom (Cindy) Haas of La Crosse and their children, Chad, Craig and Cole (Dani) Haas and Mandy and Bryce (Beth) Grams; Valerie (Paul) Martell of La Crosse and their children, Leah Haas (fiancé, Ben Haskin) and Michael Veglahn; Jackie Haas of La Crosse and her children, Joshua Martell and Mason Haas; and Alessia Haas of La Crosse; two great-grandchildren; his siblings, Vernon (Elsie) Haas, Marilyn Ellefson and David (Delores) Grant; a sister-in-law, Dolores Leiran; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his stepmother, Gertina (Slindee) Haas; siblings, Gerald Leiran, Florence Turner, Lorna Rychecky and Pattie Valentine; brothers-in-law, Orlean Ellefson and John Rema; and a nephew, Ronald Rema.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, 2135 Weston St., La Crosse. The Rev. Bruce Iverson will officiate. Burial with military honors will take place in Oak Grove Cemetery. Family and friends may call from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Monday at Schumacher-Kish Funeral Home of La Crosse and from 10 a.m. to time of service Tuesday at the church. Online condolences may be offered at

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the life of: Ronald H. Haas
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