Richard Kampfer, 82, died Saturday, May 3, at Emerald Valley Assisted Living Center in Appleton.
Richard, born June 21, 1931, was the oldest son of Joseph and Hattie (Grenzer) Kampfer of rural Chilton. Richard's first two years of schooling were in a neighborhood one-room school before graduating from St. Mary's Grade School.
He attended Chilton High School, worked on the home farm and helped with neighbors until entering the U.S. Army in 1951. After basic training he was assigned to a mountain infantry unit in Austria.
After leaving the Army and some technical schooling, Richard entered the printing trades beginning with the Chilton Times-Journal. He made rapid progress in the printing trades and quickly adapted to the new technology that swept through the industry. He was a member of the first graduating class of a highly advanced school in Colorado. From there he moved to graphic arts development jobs, first in Milwaukee, then with the Wall Street Journal at one of its printing plants before moving to Chicago where he became the lead man in graphic arts specialty shop that specialized in print advertising.
While in Chicago he met Renate Zurmoehle. Renate was born in Bremen, Germany, and worked at a large international bank. They were married on Nov. 17, 1982. They built a home in Villa Park, Ill, where the lived until they retired and moved to Florida.
When Renata died on Jan. 29, 2003, Richard moved back to Chilton buying a condo in Chilton's Brewery Court. He lived there until health issues required that he move into care facilities, first in Chilton and then in Appleton.
He is preceded in death by his parents and his wife. Richard is survived by his brother, Donald, and sister-in-law, Lila (Halbach) Kampfer, one nephew, Steve Kampfer, Lenexa, KS, three nieces, Kay Poth, Sheboygan, Laura Meier, Chilton, Traci Ecker, Stockbridge, and special friend, Janette Maurer, of rural Kiel.
He was a member of the American Legion and Knights of Columbus.
Richard's big interests, aside from his life's work, were antique tractors, old steam tractors and steam powered railroads. He never missed a steam engine show and went on trips just so he could ride a train with a steam powered locomotive.
He also had a great passion for old-fashioned farming and would drive hundreds of miles to watch Amish farmers work their land with horses.
Richard also loved travel. During his military service in Europe he visited many countries including France, Spain, England and Ireland. After marriage Richard and his wife traveled to Europe frequently visiting relatives and just sight-seeing.
He had great respect for nature and the environment and supported many Humane Association efforts.
Funeral service will be at 11:30 am on Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at Good Shepherd Catholic Church (54 E. Main St.) in Chilton with the Rev. Larry Abler, O.F.M. Cap. officiating. Burial will be in the St. Mary Catholic Cemetery. Friends may call at the church from 9:30 am until 11:15 am on Tuesday, May 6, 2014.
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