Gonnering, William J.
William J. Gonnering, Freedom, age 88 in two days, died after a short illness with his family by his side, on Monday February 10, 2014, at Rennes Health and Rehab Center. He was born February 12, 1926 in the Town of Freedom, to the late John and Catherine (Verstagen) Gonnering. He married the former Dorothy Greiner on May 18, 1949 at St. Nicholas Catholic Church in Freedom. Dorothy passed away September 4, 2006.
Bill was a farm boy his whole life. His love of work helped him to be a successful, and well respected livestock dealer throughout the country. His work ethic taught his son and grandsons well. He was a great business man and had good sense of people. He was often willing to give others an opportunity to succeed. Bill was a member of St. Nicholas Parish his entire life and was very proud of his Catholic faith and heritage, especially his seven aunts who were nuns. In his early married life and living next to the church, he loved to spend time with all of our parish priests.
He was also a Charter member of the Freedom Lions Club. Bill loved all the wonderful things the Lions were able to do for the community. When he was able to make the meetings he certainly had his share of fun with the other members. Bill's business sense also came in handy as he served on the Board of Directors of Marine Bank and Bank One in Freedom for many years, and retired from the board in 1989.
Bill cherished his family and is survived by his children: Jayne (Dan) VandeWettering, Sally (Tom) Michalkiewicz, Patti (Dave) Banks, and Bill (Peggy) Gonnering; grandchildren: Cory (Michelle) VandeWettering, Staci (Paul) Milheiser, Tyler Michalkiewicz, Emily (Jeremie) Clark, Ross Michalkiewicz, Adam (Amber) Gonnering, Megan (Nick) VanHandel, Travis (special friend Danielle) Gonnering; great-grandchildren and step-great-grandchildren: Lydia, Logan, Lynea, and Libby Lang; Adelyn, Cydnee, and Fletcher VanZeeland; Quinn Milheiser; Hayden Michalkiewicz; Kayla, Brady, Kennedy and Owen Clark; Evelyne and William Gonnering; Grace VanHandel; and two more expected in July. He is further survived by: a brother, Gene Gonnering; sisters: Lorraine Vandenberg, Rosie Stoffel, Pat (Jerry) Kittiko; sisters-in-law Lois Gonnering, Sharon Gonnering; additional in-laws: Rosie Greiner, Bill Greiner, Ronny and Vonny Greiner, Bob (Beaver) and Vionne Greiner, Jim and Sharon Greiner.
Also survived by many nieces, nephews and friends.
Besides his parents and his wife, Bill was preceded in death by: daughter Jeanie and son Scott; brothers: Jack (Catherine) Gonnering, Donald and Orville Gonnering, sister Adelle (Earl) VanEperen. brothers-in-law: Mike Vandenberg, Donald Stoffel, Carl Greiner; sister-in-law, Ila Greiner; mother and father-in-Law, Carl (Frances Liesch) Greiner.
The Mass of Christian Burial for Bill will be at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, February 14, 2014 at ST. NICHOLAS CATHOLIC CHURCH, Freedom with Fr. Dan Felton officiating. Family and friends will be received at church from 11:00 a.m. until the time of service.
The family would like to thank the 8th floor staff at AMC hospital, ThedaCare Hospice, and especially his 'Little Sweet Hearts' at The Renaissance Assisted Living in Appleton.