January 23, 2021 – West Bend, WI – Francis A. Peters of West Bend died on Friday, January 22, 2021 at The Kathy Hospice at the age of 86 years.
He was born September 12, 1934 on the family homestead in the Town of Polk to the late Henry and Theresa (nee Melder) Peters.
After graduating from Holy Angels Grade School, Francis attended vocational school in West Bend and helped on his family’s farm. He also did mason work for 6 years.
On June 26, 1957, Francis was united in marriage to Rita M. Schladweiler at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in St. Michaels.
Francis and Rita purchased the homestead dairy farm in 1959. He received the Outstanding Young Farmer Award in 1966, sponsored by the West Bend Jaycees. In 1981, his son took over the farm operation and Francis worked at various jobs including 12 years of maintenance at St. Frances Cabrini Parish.
Francis was a charter member of St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church. He served as a Eucharistic minister, sang in the first choir, served on the first parish council and on the building and grounds committee. He was also a member of the Fr. Casper Rehrl Council 1964 Knights of Columbus, the Apostolate of Suffering, the Richfield Historical Society, the Wisconsin Antique Power Reunion and the We Love to Dance Club.
He enjoyed spending time with his family. He enjoyed dancing with his sweetheart, Rita and all his friends from the “We Love to Dance Club”. He also enjoyed his John Deere tractors and giving his grandchildren rides or letting them drive under his guidance.
In 2017, the family farm was sold and Francis and Rita moved to West Bend.
Survivors include his beloved wife of 63 years, Rita; 7 children: Marie (Richard) Goebel of Beechwood, Daniel of West Bend, Ronald (Sharon) of West Bend, Edward (Mary) of Greenwood, Diane (Michael) Zancanaro of West Bend, Luann (Daniel) Dall of Whitewater and Jolene (Michael) Jentsch of West Bend; 17 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; 1 sister Lillian Ritger of West Bend; 1 brother-in-law Joseph Schnitzler; 2 sisters-in-law: Helen (LeRoy) Doll of Allenton and Ruthanne (Jerome) Feucht of Mayville; many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by 8 brothers and sisters Rev. Raymond Peters, Dorothy (Norbert) Baumann, Marie (Edward) Wiedmeyer, Donald (Harriet) Peters, Genevieve (Gregory) Wiedmeyer, Aloys (Edna) Peters, Edmund Peters, and Henrietta Schnitzler; and 1 brother-in-law Anthony Ritger.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, January 30 at 11 a.m. at St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church. Burial will follow in Holy Angels Cemetery.
Visitation will be Friday, January 29 from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. at the Schmidt Funeral Home in West Bend. The Knights of Columbus will lead a prayer service for their brother knight at 3 p.m. Friday at the funeral home.
For those unable to attend Mass, the funeral will be livestreamed to the funeral home’s Facebook page (Schmidt Funeral Home).
Memorials to the St. Frances Cabrini Education Fund are appreciated.
The Schmidt Funeral Home of West Bend is serving the family. Messages of comfort and condolence may be left for the family in an online guest book and www.schmidtfuneralhome.com.