William Bodwin

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William L. Bodwin

William Lee Bodwin, age 65, Two Rivers, died peacefully on Monday afternoon, November 19, 2012, at his residence.

William was born on July 15, 1947, in Two Rivers, the first born of the late Everett and Florence (Koehler) Bodwin.

William attended St Luke's Catholic School and graduated with the Class of 1965 from Washington High School in Two Rivers. He then attended Two Rivers Vocational School from 1965 - 1967, earning degrees in Basic Electronics and Television Repairs before entering an internship at Uptown TV and Appliances. In 1968 Bill attended Vocational School in Sheboygan and received a degree in Industrial Electronics.

William worked at Paragon Electric in Two Rivers beginning in 1968 in the test lab. In 1972 he began a five-year Tool & Die Apprenticeship and continued at Paragon in the Tool & Die Department until the factory closed in 1999. He then worked at Parker Dayco and Invincible Office Furniture until his retirement in 2008 due to health issues.

Bill was a car enthusiast all of his life. At age 12 he began accompanying his father to Princl Trucking in Mishicot during the summers as a truck mechanics assistant. In 1971 Bill built his garage on Wilson Street as a place to work on his many car projects. One of his first garage projects was helping his brother build a 1936 Plymouth Coupe Street Rod. During the winter of 1973, Bill worked diligently on his first Street Rod, a 1934 Ford Sedan. Bill built many cars for family members over the years. In the early 1990's Bill restored a 1979 Ford Fairmont Station Wagon that brought him much pride.

The Wisconsin Street Rod Association had its first WSRA Corn Roast Car Show at the Waverly Bar on Lake Winnebago in Fond du Lac in 1971. Bill and his brother Glenn attended with the '36 Plymouth. As the years passed and the Show grew, it moved first to the KOA Campgrounds in Fond du Lac and finally to the Fairgrounds. He spent every Labor Day Weekend from 1977 - 2010 in Fond du Lac at the Corn Roast Car Show, visiting with friends and relatives. Bill was very particular about his projects and could explain every detail of why and how. Ever since his garage was completed in 1971, numerous people have stopped in for advice on how to do something or looking for an odd part for a home or car repair.

On May 6, 1978, Bill married Judith Coenen Theiss at St Mark's Catholic Church in Two Rivers. They built a home next to Bill's garage where they raised their family and logged plenty of "garage time".

In recent years Bill took an interest in caves and mines and together he and Judi visited many caves and mines in Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota and Iowa. Bill developed an interest in Stirling Steam Engines which lead to a number of new projects and trips to various steam engine shows around the state.

Survivors include his wife of 34 years, Judi Bodwin, three children: Jeffrey Bodwin, Moorhead, Minnesota; Diana Bodwin and spouse Joshua Pleasant, Seattle, Washington; and Bradley Bodwin, De Pere, Wisconsin; and one very special grandson, Theodore William (Teddy Billy) Pleasant of Seattle.

William is further survived by one brother and sister-in-law, Glenn and Carolyn Bodwin of Two Rivers; two sisters, Nancy Stichert of Casper, Wyoming; and Bonnie Rulseh of McHenry, Illinois; and brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Doris and Donald Koch of Two Rivers; Sandra Coenen and Keith Libal of Sarasota, Florida; Francis Coenen of Sheboygan; Raymond and Elaine Coenen of Two Rivers; Dale Coenen of Mishicot. William is further survived by many nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles , cousins and friends. Also surviving are the members of the Fox Valley Street Rod Association which Bill & Judi have been members for over twenty five years.

William was preceded in death by his parents, Everett and Florence Bodwin, his mother-in-law and father-in-law Benedict and Gladys Coenen and brothers-in law and sisters-in-law, Emmett and Ruth Coenen, Kenneth & Jean Coenen, Wesley and Winnie Coenen, Ruth Coenen, Gail Coenen and Richard Hallada as well as Aunts, Uncles, Nieces, Nephews and Cousins.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, November 21, 2012, at St. Peter the Fisherman Catholic Church, Two Rivers. Officiating at the Mass of Christian Burial will be Rev. Tom Reynebeau. Burial will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery.

The family will greet relatives and friends on Wednesday, November 21, 2012, at St. Peter the Fisherman Catholic Church from 9:00 until 10:45 a.m.

Expressions of sympathy may be extended to the family by visiting www.kleinandstangel.com

The Klein & Stangel Funeral Home, Two Rivers, is assisting the family with funeral arrangements.

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Klein & Stangel Funeral Home
1420 22nd Street
Two Rivers, WI 54241
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Published in Manitowoc Herald Times Reporter on Nov. 20, 2012
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