Eugene Donald Wurtz, “Gene”, age 90, passed away peacefully on Monday, May 22, 2023.
Gene was born in 1932, in Town Byron to Lawrence “Casey” and June (Holterman) Wurtz. He graduated from Mayville High School in 1950. Gene served in the US Navy as an electronics technician aboard the USS Manchester during the Korean War from June 1950 to September 1953. Upon his discharge from the Navy, Gene joined his father in the family business – Wurtz and Son Refrigeration in Mayville. Forever the entrepreneur, Gene owned several businesses in Mayville over the course of his career, including Wurtz and Son Refrigeration, Wurtz Refrigeration, Wurtz Specialty Ice Company, and later Treasure Trove Antiques. He was also proud of his ability to share his Refrigeration and engineering expertise with several classes of students as an instructor at Moraine Park Technical Institute.
On October 1, 1955, Gene married the love of his life Alyce Kloeden at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. Together, they were blessed with 2 children, 2 grandchildren, 3 beautiful great-granddaughters. Family was always very important to Gene and many birthdays, holidays, and regular days were spent camping, at his cottage in Neshkoro, and around the kitchen table laughing and sharing stories of his exploits in his younger days.
His love of community was very strong. His passion for Mayville, Dodge County, the State of Wisconsin, and his Country was evidenced in his lifelong service to all.
He belonged to the American Legion Post 69 in Mayville for 70 years, where he held many offices at the local, county, and district levels. He and Alyce traveled to many National Conventions throughout the country, including Washington DC. In 2019, Gene was honored to participate in the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight back to Washington DC, where he was treated like the hero he truly was, visiting many outstanding monuments and memorials during that adventure of a lifetime, including the Korean Memorial. Upon returning home, Gene finally received the hero’s welcome he so richly deserved.
Continuing with his nature to serve, Gene proudly served on the Dodge County Board of Supervisors – twice. Over 25 years in the 70’s thru 90’s, and again in 2018 to 2019, he served as 1st Vice Chairman of the Board and on the Audit and Judicial Committees. He was instrumental in getting the new jail built in Juneau – a state of the art facility at the time it was completed. He also had a very long tenure on the Dodge County Housing Authority Board, overseeing several senior housing developments throughout Dodge County.
Gene loved sports, all kinds of sports. He played shortstop on the Mayville High School baseball team, and he was invited to try out for the farm team of the New York Yankees in 1950. In his later years when his running legs had slowed down, he was an avid fan of the Green Bay Packers, Milwaukee Brewers, and Milwaukee Bucks – never missing a chance to watch the games and coach the teams from his chair by the TV.
He was an avid hunter and provided lots of wild game for his family. He enjoyed duck hunting on the Horicon Marsh, his the annual hunting trips to Rush Lake and his hunting land in Neshkoro. He also loved fishing – any kind of fishing – from bullheads and northerns at the Greenhead Hunting Club, where he was a long time member, to trout beneath Bond Falls in Upper Michigan, to salmon fishing off the coast of Oregon.
Gene leaves behind his wife of 67 years Alyce; daughter Debra (Paul) Wegner and son David (Tina) Wurtz, 2 grandchildren – Elizabeth (Daniel) Chatham and Christopher (Amanda) Wegner, and 3 beautiful great-granddaughters – Isabella and Sophia Chatham and Julia Wegner. He was a devoted family man, a cherished husband, father, grandpa, and greatgrandpa. He will be greatly missed, but never forgotten by his family and friends.
Gene was preceded in death and will be reunited with his mother, father, and Stepmother Alice Wurtz; his sister and brother-in-law Lloyd and Patricia Musack, sister Kathleen Eineichner, brother Richard, and brother and sister-in-law Lawrence and Marion Wurtz, as well as his niece Melinda, and many other family and friends.
Friends may call 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Thursday, May 25, 2023 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Mayville. Gene will be sent to his eternal home with services at St. Paul’s at 11:00 am with Rev. Traci A. Maass officiating. Military Honors will be conducted by the American Legion Post #69 of Mayville. A private family burial will follow at a later date.
The family would like to extend a special thank-you to the compassionate staff of Prairie Ridge Assisted Living in Beaver Dam and the staff of St. Croix Hospice for the love and care provided to Gene over the past 4 years.
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