Obit: Thomas Jansen, 77, West Bend

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Jan. 2, 2017 – West Bend, WI – Thomas N. Jansen of West Bend died unexpectedly on Friday, December 30, 2016 at Froedtert Hospital in Wauwatosa at the age of 77 years.

Tom was a loving and loved husband, father, grandfather and friend to many. He was a soft spoken man who was loud with his faith in God and kindness to those around him. Born on December 22, 1939 in the Town of Barton, Tom spent almost all of his years in the West Bend area. He attended St. Mary’s grade school and West Bend High School (Class of ’57). A patriotic duty called Tom to the Navy after high school and after 4 years and trips around the world; he fulfilled that duty and returned to West Bend with a strong sense of pride and skills to begin a new life.

He started dating the love of his life, Ruth Dornacker, in 1963 which began their 53 years together including 52 years of loving marriage. Tom was Dad to Scott, Steve and Sherri Lynn and Papa to Elizabeth and Alex. Together, Tom and Ruth encouraged the meaning of family and the importance of surrounding each other with many love ones.

Tom spent 42 years working at Weasler Engineering as a machinist. He loved to play golf (member of Hon-E-Kor Golf & Country Club), hunt and of course football. He never missed a Green Bay Packer or Wisconsin Badger football game. The doctors said he bled a little green and gold along with his Badger red.

Together Tom and Ruth were fortunate to travel to many parts of the world. Tom was best known as the guy who could literally fix or build anything. With his passing the world is already a little more in disrepair.

Tom’s love of his Lord and savior Jesus Christ and a member of Holy Angels Church for over 52 years, led him to the Knights of Columbus. He was part of the Knights of Columbus Father Caspar Rehrl Council 1964 Third Degree, Our Lady of Holy Hill Assembly Fourth Degree, and a member of the honor guard. Tom was honored to be the Grand Knight and Faithful Navigator.

He was a major supporter and volunteer of many charitable organizations including West Bend Germanfest. While giving to the community, it was a great way to celebrate his German heritage, drink German bier and listen and dance to polka music.

Tom’s family has a lasting memory of him from a recent trip to Jamaica, returning home on Christmas night. He will be remembered as the captain of the boat, with a Red Stripe beer in hand and a smile on his face as the sun sets into the sea. How fitting for a former Navy man.

Tom was a loving husband and best friend to Ruth for more than 52 years, he was a devoted dad to Scott (Karyn), Steve and the late Sheri Lynn, and proud papa of Elizabeth and Alexander. He is further survived by brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Betty Backhaus, Ralph Wenzlaff, Clint Gundrum, Leo (Pat) Dornacker, Carol Hamm and Ralph (Arlene) Dornacker; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

In addition to his daughter, he was preceded in death by his parents Lawrence and Rose (nee Matenaer), brother Richard, sisters Rita Wenzlaff and Mary Gundrum, brother-in-law Marvin Hamm, parents-in-law George and Eleanor Dornacker and sister-in-law June Dornacker.

Please come celebrate Tom’s life with us. Visitation will be held on Wednesday, January 4 at Holy Angels Catholic Church from 2 until 5:45 p.m. The Knights of Columbus will lead a prayer service in memory of their Brother Knight at 4 p.m. at church. A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 6 p.m. Burial will be Thursday at 10 a.m. in Washington County Memorial Park.

The family has requested Masses or memorials to Holy Angels Parish.

The Myrhum Patten Miller & Kietzer Funeral Homes and the Schmidt Funeral Homes are honored to be serving the family.

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