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William Ahrnsbrak


1942 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
William Ahrnsbrak Obituary
Ahrnsbrak, Dr. William F.

Dr. William F. Ahrnsbrak, 71, of Boulder Junction, WI died Saturday, May 18, 2014 at Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice in Sheboygan Falls, WI.

Bill was born May 21, 1942 in Sheboygan, WI to William G.C. and Roma (Jacobi) Ahrnsbrak.

He attended local Sheboygan schools and graduated from Sheboygan North High School, Class of 1960. He obtained his Masters and PH.D in Meteorology from UW-Madison, where he also studied Oceanography.

In 1965 Bill was a member of the United States Antarctic Research Program at Palmer Station in Antarctica. Ahrnsbrak Glacier in the Enterprise Hills of the Heritage Range in Antarctica was named for him in recognition of his work as a glaciologist.

From 1970 to 2004, Bill was a professor at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, NY. During his tenure, he co-founded the Department of Geoscience and served as its chair. Bill's expertise in meteorology and fluid dynamics was unusual in such a small Geoscience Department, but established at Hobart and William Smith a concern for the Earth's interconnected dynamic systems—a concern validated by our growing concerns about global warming and climate change. Bill was also an active researcher and with his students made important discoveries on the dynamics of wind driven currents in Seneca Lake, the largest of New York's Finger Lakes. With other geoscience colleagues, he obtained numerous grants that helped fund geoscience research and obtain field equipment.

In 2004 he retired to his cabin on Whitney Lake in Boulder Junction, WI where he was able to enjoy hunting, fishing and the company of his many friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Robert.

Bill is survived by his son, Daniel (Hallie) Ahrnsbrak and grandchildren Andrew, Catherine and Thomas, of Maryland; his daughters, Gretchen Munsch of Texas and Kristin Ahrnsbrak of Georgia. He is further survived by his sister-in-law, Margaret Ahrnsbrak; and nephews Christopher (Tiffany) Ahrnsbrak and Michael (Amanda) Ahrnsbrak.

In accordance with his wishes, cremation has taken place.

Memorial funds will be established in his name for The United Methodist Church of The Pines (415 Chippewa Street, Minocqua, WI 54548), and Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice (W2850 Wisconsin 28, Sheboygan Falls, WI 53085), and the .

Cards can be sent to Daniel Ahrnsbrak, 7840 Misty View Lane, Owings, MD 20736-3816.

The family would like to thank his friends and especially his neighbor, Jimmy Vanrossum, for looking out for Bill. Also, thank you to the staff at Howard Young Medical Center in Woodruff, WI and the staff at Sharon S. Richardson Community Hospice in Sheboygan Falls, WI for their compassionate care and support.

To light a candle or sign the guestbook in memory of Bill, visit www.ballhornchapels.com

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Published in Manitowoc Herald Times Reporter on May 21, 2014
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