THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Ira J. Behnke
Ira J. Behnke, 94, formerly of Lena, passed away on Thursday, March 14 at Sharpe Care in Oconto Falls.
Born on Oct. 5, 1918, he was the son of the late Reinhold and Julia (Heinz) Behnke. A World War II veteran, he served in the United States Army and received the Purple Heart Medal after being wounded in action in Germany in 1945.
On Sept. 7, 1946 he married the former Evelyn L. Hartwig at St. Johns Evangelical Lutheran Church and the couple celebrated 62 years together. She preceded him in death on June 19, 2009. A member of St. Johns Evangelical Lutheran Church he enjoyed hunting and trapping. He farmed his whole life in the Town of Little River and also worked at Thompson Boat, retiring in 1976.
He is survived by a son, Jeffrey (Tammy) Behnke of Lena; a daughter, Cindy (Greg) Archambault of Green Bay; a brother, Herb (Lenore) Behnke of Shawano; four grandchildren; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Shirley and Ron Grom, Arleen Hartwig, Don Polzin and Carol Behnke.
Besides his parents and his wife, Evelyn, he was preceded in death by a son, Wayne; five brothers and three sisters.
Visitation was held on Sunday, March 17 at St. Johns Evangelical Lutheran Church in Grover from 1 p.m. until time of services at 3 p.m. Pastor Charles Learman officiated and burial was in Forest Home Cemetery in Marinette. Berth & Rosenthal Funeral Home, Peshtigo assisted the family with arrangements.
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