Elmer D. Queram

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Elmer D. Queram, formerly of Prairie du Chien, died on Feb. 21, at Onalaska Care Center, Onalaska.

Elmer was born in Milwaukee, on Dec. 26, 1916, the first of six children of Albert and Anna Queram. The family moved to Manitowoc, where his father died in Aug., 1926, leaving his mother to raise the six children. She, along with the help of family and friends, and working as a housekeeper, managed somehow.

Elmer graduated from Lincoln High School with the class of 1935 as valedictorian. He then worked his way through the University of Wisconsin–Madison, graduating in 1940 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics. He then taught mathematics for two years at the University of Wisconsin–Madison while attending law school. He received his law degree (LLB) in 1947.

Elmer and his beloved wife, Doris (Wainwright) Queram were joined in holy matrimony on Nov. 25, 1950. Three lovely girls were born to this union: Ona, Amy and Ann. Later, seven adorable (the best in the world) grandchildren came along, Abby, Jessica and Jameson Childs; Maille and Mikie O’Neal; and Ethan and Emma Will; and five great grandchildren (all cuties), Elise, Evan, Norah, Cameron and Elizabeth.

During World War II, Elmer served with the 90th INF DIV in the ETO in Europe as a mortar platoon leader and in other capacities. He was discharged from active duty in 1947 as a captain. In 1949, he transferred from the reserves to the Wisconsin National Guard’s 32nd INF DIV. When the division was called to active duty in August, 1961 during the Berlin Crisis, he served as the division’s logistical officer on the general staff. He retired from National Guard duty in 1964 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

His military commendations include the Combat Infantry Badge, Purple Heart with oak leave cluster, Bronze Star with three oak leave clusters, Officer’s Army Commendation Medal, and various service and campaign ribbons, including a Silver Campaign Star for five ETO campaigns and a Bronze Arrowhead for beachhead landing. He also received a Silver Tray from the officers of the 32nd Division.

After retirement from the 32nd INF DIV Elmer received a letter from his commanding officer, Major General Herbert A. Smith (who served with the 32nd Division during World War II) who wrote that “Elmer’s performance as the Division G-4 (logistic officer) was truly outstanding and that he would not have traded him for any officer he knew.”

In 1947 he joined Robert Scheffer in a law office partnership in Prairie du Chien. They enjoyed a very successful practice. Upon Mr. Sheffer’s death in 1979, Elmer joined in a partnership with James Czajkowski, which also proved to be very successful. Elmer retired from office practice in December, 1982. He continued to serve as Family Court Commissioner for Crawford County until March, 1993, a position which he held for 35 years. Elmer also served five two-year terms during the 1950’s and 1960’s as District Attorney for Crawford County. 

Elmer enjoyed sports, especially football and the Green Bay Packers (he was very proud that his nephew John Anderson was an outstanding linebacker for the Pack!), hunting and fishing, golf, bowling, and playing cards. He enjoyed seeing his children and nieces and nephews play with their respective schools teams.

He liked kids and people. Elmer often said that he had been blessed all along the way in his life by the helping hands of may people: his wonderful wife; his extended families; competent, intelligent, hard-working co-workers, especially his secretaries who surely were the finest; the employees and elected personnel at the courthouse and Department of Human Services who were always ready to help; his comrades-in-arms; his church family; many friends from whom he could give and take; and, above all, a saintly mother.

Elmer was active in community affairs serving as an organizer and member of the Chamber of Commerce, the Crawford County ARC (Opportunity Center), and as a member and president of the Library Board.

He was active in the United Methodist Church as a lay leader, and member and president of the Administrative Board of Trustees. He also conducted Sunday classes for thirty years. 

He was a member and president of the Kiwanis Club, Prairie du Chien Country Club, VFW, Legion of the Masonic Order - 32nd degree, and the American Legion.

He received letters of commendation and awards for services rendered from the Crawford County Opportunity Center; from the Crawford County Association for Handicapped Persons, the Prairie du Chien Memorial Library for services as a member of and as president of the Board of Trustees. 

He was preceded in death by his wife, Doris; his parents; two brothers, John and Russell; two sisters, Grace Sparks and Edith (Petie) Gloe.

Survivors include his three daughters, Ona (Kurt) Childs, Amy (Michael) O’Neal, and Ann Will; grandchildren Abby (Eric) Hemmerich, Jessica Childs and Jameson (Danette) Childs; Maille O’Neal and Michael O’Neal, Jr.; and Ethan Will and Emma Will; and five great-grandchildren, Elise, Evan, and Norah Hemmerich, and Cameron and Elizabeth Childs; his brother Norman (Molly) Queram and a host of good looking, intelligent, athletic, fun loving nieces and nephews.

Memorials may be directed to the Prairie du Chien Public Library, Crawford County ARC or the Prairie du Chien United Methodist Church.

A memorial service will be Saturday, Feb. 27, at 11 a.m. at the United Methodist Church, Rev. Barb Cook officiating with inurnment in the Evergreen Cemetery both in Prairie du Chien. Military honors will be accorded by the Prairie du Chien Honor Guard. Friends may call at the church on Saturday, from 9 a.m. until the time of services. The Garrity Funeral Home of Prairie du Chien is assisting the family. 

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