Kenneth “Kenny” “The Chief” Alois Sterr, age 75, Iron Ridge, ended life on earth on April 29, 2022, when God gave him eternal rest, and God’s angels carried him into His loving arms. Our dad was one in a million who came into this world on November 29, 1946, the son of Roman and Erna (Keller) Sterr. He was baptized at St. Andrew’s Church in Leroy on December 15, 1946. At the age of 1½ years, Dad’s mother died, and he went to live with his grandparents, Alvin and Amelia Sterr, on their farm outside of Brownsville. While living with his grandparents, Dad was required to help with the rigorous farm work at a very young age. He lived with his grandparents until age sixteen. At age sixteen, he moved in with his dad and step-mother Hildegard and continued the rigorous farm work full time on his dad’s farm. At eighteen, he met Barbara Feucht at the Brownsville Fireman’s dance. After that night, Kenneth and Barbara dated exclusively. On May 27, 1966, the night Barbara graduated from high school, Kenneth gave Barbara an engagement ring. Kenneth and Barbara were married on November 19, 1966, at St. Martin’s Catholic Church in Ashford, Fond du Lac County.
In 1967, Dad took on two full-time jobs as a farm laborer and as a mason to support his family; he continued to work two full-time jobs until 1988. In November 1974, our parents purchased their first house on Cty. Hwy. HH, Brownsville. They resided there until 1981 when they purchased an 80-acre farm on West Iowa Road, Iron Ridge, where they resided, and dairy farmed. They bought their farm machinery at local auctions and purchased their cows from a cattle dealer in Middleton. Our dad dairy farmed and did mason work until 1988. At that time, our parents sold the milking cows, and Dad only raised steers while still working as a mason.
From 1983 to 1988, our parents completely gutted and self-remodeled their entire three-story farmhouse. In 1996, they discontinued farming and rented their farmland to others, while Ken continued mason work. In 2001, they purchased a tavern in Horicon, Chief’s Place. They continued to reside on their farm while Dad worked in the tavern where he enjoyed talking with his many customers. He was also a member of Duck’s Unlimited, a wetland conservation group.
Dad enjoyed his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren very much – attending their school concerts, sports, plays, graduations, and visiting them on their birthdays. He enjoyed mowing the lawn, cleaning out line fences, making wood, driving his ATV, playing cribbage and sheepshead, and doing wood-working projects with Mom.
Dad enjoyed traveling within the United States with Mom and us children. In 1996, they began flying to vacation areas, spending two or three weeks at each place. Places where they vacationed were Hawaii, Oahu, Maui, Molaki, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England, Italy, Sicily, Island of Capri, Germany, Greece, Greek Isles (Mykonos, Rhodes, Patmos, Crete, Santorini), Turkey, British Columbia, Yukon, and Alaska.
Survivors include Ken and Barb’s legacy – their five children: Kevin (Michele) of Mayville; Tim (Lynn H.) of Malone; Troy (Ruth Weigel-Sterr) of Madison; Roxanne (Mike) Frane of Iron Ridge; Christy (special friend, Tom) of Elmwood Park, IL. Thirteen grandchildren: Kayla (Nick) Grose, Tamara (Mike) Marshall, Kenny Sterr; Brandon Sterr; Savanna A.; Lydia S.; Kezia (Christian Constantine), Rysa, Kyanna, Malachi, Suraya Weigel-Sterr; Mariah, Mason, Serenity Frane. Eight great-grandchildren: Kendall, Trenton, Asher, Peter Marshall; Lyla, Elania, Nora, Fiona Grose. Siblings include one sister, Louise (Edgar Schwartz) of West Bend; two half-sisters, Gerianne (Leslie) Weyer of Brownsville and Ann (Harold) Reuter of Lomira; and one half-brother, Gerd (Patti) of Fond du Lac. In-laws include five sisters-in-law, Sandy (Alan) Haegler of Oakfield; Karen Dueling (special friend, Frank) of Watertown; Linda (David-deceased) Gabrielson of Fond du Lac; Debbie (Bob) Beesley of Iron River; Beverly Missikian of Las Vegas; and four brothers-in-law, Raymond Feucht, Jr. of Campbellsport; Rodney (Linda) Feucht of Florida; Daniel (Donna) Feucht of Appleton; and David of Campbellsport.
Dad was preceded in death by his wife of 52 years, Barbara Ann; his mother, Erna, on August 18, 1948; his dad, Roman, on January 11, 2002; and his grandparents Alvin and Amelia (Schabel) Sterr and Alois and Louise (Reese-Ertl) Keller and his step mother Hildegard Sterr.
Ken’s paternal lineage: Alvin Sterr/Amelia Schabel; Michael Sterr/Anna Liegl; Marcus Sterr/Elizabeth Maurzedt. Bernard Schabel/Theresa Gittle.
Ken’s maternal lineage: Alois Keller/Louise Reese-Ertl; George Keller/Justina Babble. William Reese/Loutee Zwieg.
A Mass of Christian Burial will take place at St. Andrew Catholic Church in LeRoy on Friday, May 6 at 12 noon with the Rev. Fr. Tom Biersack presiding. A visitation will take place on Friday, May 6, from 10 a.m. until the time of the Mass at noon at the church in LeRoy. Interment will take place at St. Andrew Cemetery in LeRoy.
The family would like to thank the Froedtert West Bend Medical team, Palliative Care team and Social Work team and Chaplains along with Angel’s Grace Hospice in providing Dad with a dignified and comfortable passing. Good-bye, Dad! Until we meet again, may the good Lord hold you in His arms