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Justice Donald Walter Steinmetz

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Justice Donald Walter Steinmetz Notice
Steinmetz, Justice Donald Walter Entered Eternal Life on August 31, 2013, at the age of 88. Resident of Milwaukee Catholic Home formerly of Milwaukee. Beloved husband for 68 years of Marjorie M. Steinmetz (nee Olejniczak). Loving father of Mary Christine (Richard W.) Bird, Kathleen Marie (Ralf R.) Boer, Christian George (Barbara) Steinmetz, Susan Kathryn (Len) Leverson, and James Martin (Jean) Steinmetz. Proud grandfather of Kristine Sara (David) Muirhead, Kevin Michael (Jenny) Bird, Mimi (Kevin) Castelo, Charles Friedrich (Ashley) Boer, Alexander Jackson "Sandy" Boer, Trevor C. Leverson, Elizabeth Leverson, Emily Leverson, Hannah Leverson, Christian N. (Stephanie) Steinmetz, Anna Katherine Steinmetz, Lauren Marie Steinmetz and Kellie Margaret Steinmetz. Great-grandfather of Madison Brooke Muirhead, Emory Grace Muirhead, Alexis Belle Bird, K. Michael Bird, Nora Jane Castelo and Adelynn Christine Steinmetz. Further survived by other relatives and many good friends Don was an avid lover of life. Faith and family were the driving forces behind every decision in his life, from his days at South Division High School and UW-Madison through his retirement, including many occasions at Pauline's Kitchen in Okauchee. He proudly served our country in the Air Force as a bombardier-navigator from 1943 through the end of World War II. Don served as an assistant city attorney, assistant district attorney, county court judge, and circuit court judge in Milwaukee. He was a main influence behind the reorganization of the Wisconsin court system. In 1980 Don was elected to the Wisconsin Supreme Court, where he served until he retired in 1999. One of his proudest contributions to the citizens of Wisconsin was authoring the Wisconsin Supreme Court decision upholding school choice. He considered this decision to be the pinnacle of his career as a lawyer and judge. That decision, Jackson v. Benson, preceded the United States Supreme Court's decision upholding school choice, and was cited in that decision; it serves as a template for other states to follow. Don's wit and love will be sorely missed by all who knew him. Visitation will take place on Thursday, September 5, from 4:00 to 8:00 PM at the Feerick Funeral Home (valet parking will be available in front of the funeral home). Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday, September 6, at 11:00 AM, at St. Robert Catholic Church, corner of East Capitol Drive and North Farwell Avenue, Shorewood. Entombment at Holy Cross Cemetery will be private for the family. Memorials in Don's name may be made to the Milwaukee Catholic Home, 2462 N. Prospect Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53211 or the American Diabetes, Milwaukee, WI, office, 375 Bishop's Way, Suite 220, Brookfield, WI 53005.

Published in Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Sept. 4, 2013
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