Parker, William L. "Sarge"
William L. "Sarge" Parker, 83, passed away Saturday, June 7, 2014 at Calumet Medical Center following a short illness. He most recently resided at Century Ridge in Chilton. Sarge was born on December 3, 1930 in Bayfield, WI to Leslie and Maxine (Henkel) Parker. He spent the early years of his life living on Michigan Island, one of the Apostle Islands, where his father was the assistant lighthouse keeper. From there he moved with his family to various lighthouses throughout the Great Lakes.
He was a soldier. Sarge proudly served his country in the United States Army for 22 years. He served in Korea and Europe, completed three combat tours in Vietnam, and was awarded two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star.
He met the love of his life, Leatrice Jost, on a train. They were married on October 25, 1958 at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Hilbert, WI. They spent the early years of their union stationed in Germany and enjoyed 47 years of marriage before Lee's passing in 2005. Sarge had a love of travel, animals, and the outdoors, especially the summer camping trips he and Lee made to Ontonagon, MI and Lake Superior. Above all, he loved spending time with family and friends.
Survivors include his children: Willy (Sue) Parker of Chilton, Michele (Randy Giesen) Parker of Appleton and Susan (Steve) Stecker of Chilton. He was a proud and loving grandfather of Parker and Jack Stecker, Chilton. He is also survived by a sister Geraldine Rugh of Sanford, NC, brother-in-law and sister-in-law George and Betty Jost of Hilbert, numerous nieces and nephews, and many, many friends.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Leatrice, his parents, Leslie and Maxine Parker, sister, Beverly Parker, and brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Gerald and Bernice Jost.
He will be sadly missed by all who were so fortunate to know and love him.
A private graveside ceremony with military honors will be held for the family. A Celebration of Life Memorial will be held at a future date. Memorials in Sarge's name are appreciated.
The family wishes to extend special thanks to the nurses and staff at Calumet Medical Center for the care they provided and to the residents and staff of Century Ridge that helped to make Sarge's stay there so enjoyable.
Valley Funeral Home
2211 N. Richmond St.
Appleton, WI 54911
Published in Appleton Post-Crescent on June 11, 2014