Joseph Robert von Allmen
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Joseph Robert von Allmen, age 87, passed away on Thursday, June 13, 2013, at St. Paul's Elder Services due to complications of congestive heart failure with his family at his side. Joe was born on September 3, 1925, in Dodgeville, Wisconsin, the son of Emma Maria (Willimann) of Lucerne, Switzerland and John "Hans" Robert von Allmen of Bern, Switzerland. Joe was baptized on September 20, 1925 at St. Mary's Church in Mineral Point, Wisconsin.
On November 20, 1952, after several years of courtship, Joe married Kathryn Sylvia Kampstra at the Kampstra family farm in the town of Courtland (R#1 Randolph). Joe and Kathy had four children: Cynthia Ann, Mark Joseph, daughter Tah and Jest.
As a first generation U.S. citizen, Joe found himself learning English in the first grade, which prepared him for reading some of his favorite books about Tarzan and books by Zane Grey. He spent many hours roller-skating with skates clamped onto his everyday shoes and ice-skating over country creeks with single bladed, "Dutch" skates.
Joe graduated from the Lena, Illinois public school system on June 3, 1941 and graduated from high school in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.
Joe followed in his father's footsteps by obtaining a Master Cheese maker's License for making Limburger cheese.
Wishing to serve his country, Joseph enlisted into the U.S. Army on July 31, 1944. He trained at Jos. T. Robinsin, continuing and completing his parachute school at Fort Benning, GA, on January 19, 1945. He went on to Fort Benning in Alabama, Ft. Meade, then to Camp Kilmore, Virginia before going overseas in March of 1945.
Joe was awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received (phosphorus burns over most of his body) in Germany on April 20, 1945. From the hospital in Liège, Belgium, he transferred to a hospital in Paris. On Memorial Day in 1945, he and a friend snuck out of the hospital to attend the U.S. laying of a wreath on the tomb of France's Unknown Soldier at the Arc de Triomphe. He appeared in the picture on the front page of the Paris edition of the Stars and Stripes the next day. Joe was honorably discharged from service on August 23, 1945.
Joe later attended Wayland Junior College in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin where he was President of Club 13 - a club for attendees who were Servicemen. Joe was Vice-President of his junior class: he played football his senior year and was President of his senior class. After graduation from Wayland in 1947, he hitchhiked to San Francisco to pursue photography at San Francisco State. However, after his camera equipment was stolen, he returned to Wisconsin to attend classes at UW - Madison.
After his marriage to Kathy in 1952, Joe worked at and eventually managed Singer Sewing Centers in Marinette and Appleton, Wisconsin. Joe made clothing for his children and taught both daughters the craft. His talent for mathematics led to an Engineering degree. He spent the remainder of his working years as a Designer Draftsman, primarily working for paper companies.
Joe was preceded in death by his mother, Emma (1979) and his father, Hans (1968); his twin brother John Albert von Allmen (1973); his wife, Kathy (1993); and infant son, Mark Joseph (1955).
Joe is survived by his sister, Narcissa Emma (von Allmen) Engle of Cedarville, Illinois; his daughter, Cynthia Ann (von Allmen) Smith and granddaughter Samantha Ann Smith, both of Oshkosh, Wisconsin; daughter, Tah von Allmen of New York; son Jest Love of Arizona; and goddaughter Carolyn (Engle) Lamia of Shawano, Wisconsin. Joe is further survived by brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews, relatives abroad in both England and Switzerland, close friends Dick, Bernie, and Jim; and many other good friends and neighbors.
Dadio was a cool cat: a man on the go; always up for an adventure; a loving, proud grandpa; fun!; keen on exercise; avid horseback rider; creator of his own language; full of faith; collector of pens; wine maker; enthusiast; photographer; lover of chocolate, and even more chocolate. He adored cats, and in recent years took up playing the banjo.
The funeral liturgy for Joseph will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, June 18, 2013 at St. Thomas More Parish (in the gymnasium), 1810 N. McDonald Street in Appleton, Wisconsin. Fr. Gerald Falk will be officiating. A time of visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. on Monday, June 17, 2013 at the Wichmann Funeral Home downtown chapel, 537 N. Superior St. and again at the church on Tuesday from 10:15 a.m. until 10:45 a.m. The burial with full military honors will be conducted at Riverside Cemetery in Appleton immediately following the church service. Online condolences can be offered at www.wichmannfargo.com.
The family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the entire staff at St. Paul Elder Services, in particular, those staffing Birch Place and the Hospice Team. Your loving care and respectful attention gave Dad great comfort.
A special thank you to Dr. Thomas Lewandowski, Ann, and the staff for your discerning care and time devoted to Dad. Everything was always "Okey-Dokey"!
Thank you to Dr. William Guenther and the staff for your vigilant care and time given to Dad.
Thank you to Dr. Jack Anderson, Carol Robbins and the staff for your care.
Wichmann Funeral Home
537 North Superior Street
Appleton, WI 54911
Published in Appleton Post-Crescent from June 16 to June 18, 2013