Ossie Prillwitz

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Prillwitz, Oswald Henry Arthur

Ossie Prillwitz, 91, was called to be at his Savior's side at the end of the evening on Friday, September 6, 2013, with his family at home.

He was born in Dale, Wisconsin, on February 23, 1922, the third of four children to Henry and Eliza (Zuberbier) Prillwitz and was baptized when he was only a few hours old. His family moved to Weyauwega when he was three years of age. He was confirmed in the Lutheran faith on Palm Sunday, 1936.

On May 23, 1959, he married Gloria (nee Reek). They were blessed with 54 years of marriage. They began to build their home in the woods on Hillside Drive in Weyauwega in 1960 and moved in later that year and raised their three sons there. His greatest joy in this life was to spend time with wife, his three sons and daughters-in-law and his ten grandchildren.

He attended St. Peter Evangelical Lutheran School, graduated from Weyauwega High School in 1940, and enlisted to serve in the U.S. Navy in World War II on Feburary 23, 1942. He served his country for four years, including two years aboard the aircraft carrier USS Chenango in the Pacific campaign. His carrier saw active combat in battles at Eniwetok Atoll, Saipan, Tarawa, Admirality Island, Morotai and Halamahera Islands, and the largest naval battle of World War II, Leyte Gulf. He received an honorable discharge on December 14, 1945 with the rank of Aviation Machinist's Mate First Class. He was privileged to make the Old Glory Honor Flight to Washington, D.C., in August of 2010 with his son, Steve.

He was a lifelong member of St. Peter Ev. Lutheran Church, where he served several terms on the church council as trustee and treasurer. One of his last wishes was to tour the new school building project at St. Peter, which he did about a week prior to his death.

Ossie was an employee of the U.S. Postal Service for 35 years, serving as clerk and postmaster. He was a rural carrier for over 29 years, retiring in April of 1984. In 1972, he established Ossie's Small Engines, a lawn and garden business, finally retiring in 1994 at the age of 75. He continued to perform repairs for friends until about a year before his death. Even in his final illness, friends were still known to say, "I'll ask Ossie." From his days working on the his uncles' farms and working as a farm hand in his early and mid-teens to help support his family, to working in a local grocery store in high school, working at Armour Meat Packing in Milwaukee after high school, working at the Soo Line Railroad in the 1940s and at Nestle's milk condensing plant and Petersen's Quality Seed and Feed Store in Weyauwega in the 1950s, he excelled in using his hands.

He served as commander of the Arndt-Bruley Post 176 of the American Legion, and worked alongside other post members to construct the Veterans Memorial Building in Weyauwega in 1958. He was also installed as commander of the Waupaca County American Legion Council in the late 1950s.

Since the late 1950s, he spent several weeks each year at Lac du Lune near Land O' Lakes. He served as president and secretary of the Vilas County Improvement Corporation, and enjoyed year-round activities of fishing, water-skiing, deer-hunting and snowmobiling at the club's lake and forest lands. On Father's Day of this year, he was still privileged to spend a week at the lake lodge with his wife, sons and daughters-in-law and all ten grandchildren, proclaiming the day his best gift ever. He was also a member and past president of the Wolf River Fur and Game Farm in Weyauwega. He continued to hunt deer every fall until two years prior to his death. Over his lifetime, he enjoyed swimming, water-skiing and teaching his sons and grandchildren to ski, and gardening and grooming his yard and oak woods on Hillside Drive. When walking became a challenge, he travelled around his yard on his Lawn Boy lawn tractor until a month before he died.

Ossie is survived by his wife, Gloria; son David (Tami) and grandchildren Braden, Riley, Griffin, Britin and Regan of Portland, Oregon; son Steven (Susan) and grandchildren Laura and her special friend Adam, Jenna and Daniel of Weyauwega; son Thomas (Stacy) and grandchildren Jennifer and Meagan of Appleton; sister-in-law Lorraine Prillwitz, Neenah; and a niece and ten nephews in Wisconsin, Tennesee, Florida, and Arizona, and many cousins, extended family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his in-laws, Emil and Emma Reek; a brother, Julius; a sister and brother-in-law Helen and Charles Stronghart; a sister and brother-in-law, Camille and Myron Drake; a brother-in-law, Dale Reek and a nephew, Timothy Stronghart.

The Christian funeral for Ossie will be held on Tuesday, September 10, 2013, at 11:30 AM at St. Peter Evangelical Lutheran Church, Weyauwega, with the Rev. Dennis Lemke, preaching, and the Rev. Newlin Shafer, presiding, including military honors. Interment will be in the Oakwood Cemetery, with concluding rites following the luncheon.

Relatives and friends may call at the Cline-Hanson-Dahlke Funeral Home in Weyauwega on Monday, September 9, 2013, from 4:00-8:00 PM and again at the church from 10:00-11:15 AM on Tuesday.

We extend a heartfelt thanks to our dear family and friends who brought food and support to us during Ossie's final days so that we could provide his care at home. We especially thank Drs. Sutton and Hildebrandt, and the wonderful hospice team at ThedaCare at Home for their support over the past two weeks.

In lieu of flowers, memorials would be appreciated to St. Peter Building on the Rock Foundation or to the St. Peter Lutheran Radio Ministry.

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:26

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Funeral Home
Cline Hanson Dahlke Funeral Home
200 South Mill Street Weyauwega, WI 54983
920-867-3399
Funeral Home Details
Published in Appleton Post-Crescent on Sept. 8, 2013
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