Obituaries

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Thu
23
May

Thomas J. Panka

Thomas J. Panka, Sr., 79, of Prairie du Chien, passed away Thursday, May 16, 2019, at his home in Prairie du Chien. 

Thomas James, the son of Thomas Henry and Helen Ann (Konichek) Panka, was born Dec. 28, 1939 in Prairie du Chien.

He graduated from Prairie du Chien High School in 1957 and enlisted in the U.S. Navy shortly after graduation. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1957 until 1961. Tom worked for the Howe Ribstone Silo Company as well as Skyline Mobile Home Company before Gencor Bituma. He retired from Gencor Bituma after 28 years.

Thu
23
May

Donald J. Cipra

Donald J. Cipra, 85, of Prairie du Chien, died as the result of injuries sustained in an automobile-pedestrian accident on Thursday, May 16, 2019. 

He was born March 10, 1934, in Prairie du Chien, the son of Frank and Esther (Berntgen) Cipra. 

Don served in the U.S. Army, stationed in Germany. He married Shirley Carl on Nov. 24, 1957, at St. Gabriel’s Church in Prairie du Chien. Don worked as a sawyer for Hiram Walker in Prairie du Chien and later as a machinist for Wolf Machine Shop for many years. Wherever he worked, he was a hard and dedicated worker and a “jack of all trades.” Don was a faithful member of St. Gabriel’s Church of the Holy Family Parish. He was an active member of the Campion Council Knights of Columbus, serving for many years as financial secretary. He was fondly known as “Mr. Tootsie Roll.” 

Thu
16
May

Melly S. Staskal

Melly S. Staskal, 76, of Bagley and formerly of Milton, passed away unexpectedly on Thursday morning, May 9, 2019, at her residence in Bagley. 

Thu
16
May

Charlie A. Vavra

Charlie A. Vavra, 88, of Harpers Ferry, Iowa, died Saturday, May 11, 2019, at Thornton Manor in Lansing, Iowa. 

Charles A. Vavra was born July 5, 1930, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, the son of Charles F. and Helen (Hellwig) Vavra. 

Thu
16
May

Marie Deloris Cox

Marie Deloris Cox, 84, of Woodman, passed away on Wednesday, May 8, 2019, at Atrium Post Acute Care Of Lancaster. 

She was born Sept. 24, 1934, to Joseph (Pep) and Mildred (Eulgem) Ludvik.

She is survived by two sons, Joseph (Laura) Jones, of Boscobel, and Donnie Cox, of Boscobel; four grandchildren, Joseph J. Jones, Shannon Dubel, Greg and Jeff Cox; five great-grandchildren; brothers, Richard Ludvik, of Guttenberg, Randy (Amy) Ludvik, of Prairie du Chien; sister, Bonnie (Butch) Schwarz, of Plugtown; and sister-in-law Sue Ludvik, of Prairie du Chien.

Thu
16
May

Bruce Gary Edwards

Bruce Gary Edwards, 72, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, April 24, 2019, surrounded by close family and friends. He lived his life according to his own rules, combining strong opinions, distinguishing taste, fierce loyalty, and an independent streak to pave a unique path. 

Thu
16
May

Michael J. Adamski

Michael J. Adamski, 56, of Winona and formerly of Prairie du Chien, passed away Wednesday, May 8, 2019, at the Methodist Hospital in Rochester, Minn., following a brief illness. 

He was born Sept. 2, 1962, in St. Paul, Minn., the son of Edward and Millie (LeVasseur) Adamski. He married Pamela Elliott on Sept. 8, 1984, and they later divorced. He was married to Rhonda Crooks in August of 2009 and they later divorced. Mike worked at 3M Company in Prairie du Chien for over 30 years and most recently worked for Wincraft in Winona. 

Thu
09
May

Diana L. Burnett

Diana L. Burnett (Janutolo, Hazen), 67, of Sun Prairie, passed away surrounded by her loving family on Monday, May 6, 2019, at Agrace Hospice Care. 

She was born on Dec. 13, 1951, in Boscobel, the daughter of Dan and Annabelle (Winkers) Hazen. 

Diana graduated from Prairie du Chien High School in 1968, and UW-La Crosse in 1972. She married Bruce Burnett on Sept. 23, 1995, in Sun Prairie. Diana was a longtime Dane County employee as an IT security officer after years of IT employment with three State of Wisconsin agencies. Her interests included Barbie doll collecting, cruising and sci-fi/fantasy writing. Her first book is in the Sun Prairie Library. Diana was a member of Broad Universe, Independent Book Publishers Association, and several writing groups close to her heart. 

Thu
09
May

James D. 'Jim' Gorman

James D. “Jim” Gorman, 79, of Wauzeka passed away Saturday, May 4, 2019, at his home following a courageous battle with cancer. 

He was born Jan. 24, 1940, in Alexandria, Ohio, the son of F.M. and Betty (Grandstaff) Gorman. 

He married Jacqueline (Boruch) Bergeron on April 17, 1999, at The Center in Palos Park, Ill. 

Jim worked as a sales manager of construction equipment for Komatsu International for 47 years until his retirement. He was an active member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Wauzeka serving as council president. Jim was also involved in the revitalization of the Lower Wisconsin River Genealogical and Historical Society. 

Thu
09
May

Norma J. Sokolik

Norma J. Sokolik, 64, of Prairie du Chien, passed away on Saturday, April 27, 2019, at Gundersen Lutheran Hospital in La Crosse. 

She was born Nov. 5, 1954, to Richard and Pearl (Warren) Torgerson in La Crosse, the youngest of 11 children. 

Norma graduated from Holmen High School. She was united in marriage with Robert W. Sokolik on Oct. 17, 1992, in LaCrosse. Norma worked for Lori Knapp in Prairie du Chien for over 20 years. She liked to travel, sew and do puzzles. 

Norma is survived by her husband, Robert, of Prairie du Chien. 

She was preceded in death by her parents; a son, Mathew R. Torgerson; and five siblings. 

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