Robert L. Von Haden Sr.

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Robert “Bob” Louis Von Haden Sr., 97, passed away on Nov. 10, 2017, in Wisconsin Rapids.

Bob was born Feb. 20, 1920, to Charles and Minnie (Schultz) Von Haden in Madison. He graduated from Suring High School and got a business degree from the Wausau Business College in 1940. He then married his high school sweetheart, Florence Virginia Lartz (“Ginni”) on Aug. 2, 1941, in Hickory Corners, in Ginni’s parents’ yard.

After Naval service in Washington, D.C., and New York during World War II, Bob and Ginni returned to Wisconsin to raise their four children in Green Bay, where Bob was self-employed, owning many businesses — the most recent of which was Von Haden Supply Company Inc., distributors of home improvement products. Bob took his role of provider very seriously, and he conducted his business dealings uprightly. Among his favorite sayings was, “Plan your work, work your plan, and your plan will work for you.”

Bob was active as a Mason in Green Bay, and kept his membership at the First United Methodist Church in Green Bay until his death. He was a huge Packers fan since the age of 15, when he hitchhiked from Suring to Green Bay to watch games under Curly Lambeau.

Bob enjoyed time with his children and grandchildren at his summer home on Kelly Lake, where he delighted in pulling people on water skis, playing cards and catching panfish. He and Ginni also enjoyed their winter home in Sun City, Arizona, where he picked oranges, lemons and grapefruits daily from their own trees. In 2007, Bob and Ginni moved to Wisconsin Rapids to be close to family. The past three years, Bob lived with his daughter Mari Beth and son-in-law Dan Peterson in Wisconsin Rapids, enjoying grandchildren up close, and spending time with his little companion and lap dog, Papi.

Bob became widowed shortly after celebrating 70 years of marriage to Ginni, his faithful wife and cheerleader. She left a void in his life that was never quite filled. But Bob is survived by his four children: Bob Jr. (Sue) of Mission Viejo, California; Carol (Hal) Wentzel of Niagara; Charles (Diane) of Green Bay; and Mari Beth (Dan) Peterson of Wisconsin Rapids. His legacy also included 12 grandchildren and 30 great-grandchildren. He always marveled at what a large family was created from his union with his wife, Ginni!

Visitation was at the Evangelical Free Church at 611 Cook Ave., Wisconsin Rapids, on Tuesday, Nov. 14, from 9:30 to 11 a.m., followed by a funeral there at 11 a.m. Military honors and a luncheon followed. Interment will take place on Wednesday, Nov. 15, at Woodlawn Cemetery in Allouez. Herman-Taylor Funeral Home, Wisconsin Rapids, is honored to be serving the family. Online condolences may be expressed at www.taylorfuneralhome.net.

A memorial will be established at a later date.