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OBITUARY | Ralph Michael ‘Mike’ Koontz, 79, of West Bend, WI

August 22, 2023 – Washington Co., WI – Ralph Michael Koontz ‘Mike’ of West Bend, WI, passed on to another life on Tuesday, August 15, 2023.


The son of Ralph and Ruth Koontz, he was born on August 29, 1943. Growing up in Patterson, Illinois he attended Roodhouse High School. Shortly after graduation, he joined the U.S. Navy where he served on the aircraft carrier the USS Shangri-La. He married his wife, Judith Nash, on July 28, 1963, and they had three children: Kenyon, Kathleen, and Deborah Kay. He lived and worked in McHenry, Illinois before moving to the West Bend area where he lived for the last 25 years.

After growing up on the family farm, Mike developed a life-long interest in the outdoors. He spent many hours camping with family, fishing, or just visiting one of the many parks in the area. You would often be able to find Mike out on the porch with his pipe and an iced tea as he watched the wildlife. He’d also be the first to update you on the happenings of the eagles he’d watch on nature cams.

A loving family man, Mike was extremely proud of his children and grandchildren. He loved family visits and outings, particularly when ice cream was involved. He loved watching baseball and car races, and would rarely miss a Brewers game. A favorite family memory to this day is Mike’s 70th birthday party at Miller Park watching the Brewers. Mike loved all things cars and watching races both on TV and at the Slinger Speedway. Even in his final months after purchasing a scooter he would rev it up and race around the neighborhood and the Eisenbahn State Trail.

Mike was a man people were automatically drawn to. He was known for his work ethic, big heart, generosity, sense of humor, booming voice, and amazing ability to aggravate his siblings. He was the first to show up to family events and was often the leader in family prayer. He is loved by all and his family will miss him dearly.

He is survived by his children Ken (Heidi) Koontz, daughter Kathleen (Dave) Wiesner, and Deborah Bauer. Grandchildren Jordan (Alan) Craft, Colton (Brandi Bohlman) Wiesner, Megan and Travis Wiesner, Austin Koontz, Quentin Deibel; and his great-grandson Justin Craft. He is further survived by his sisters Maureen (Rick) Koehl, Dixie (Dennis) Brunner, sister-in-law Lana (James Jones) Koontz; and numerous nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents Ralph and Ruth Koontz, his wife Judith Nash Koontz, his brother Bryan Koontz, and his sister Sherry Koontz Pachciarz.

Services will be held at the Schmidt Funeral Home in West Bend, WI on Saturday, August 26, 2023, with visitation from 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. followed by a memorial service.

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