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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Louis P. Boettcher

Louis Paul Boettcher, 79, of Shawano, formerly of Bonduel, passed away on Sunday, March 24.

Born and baptized at the family farm in the Town of Hartland, rural Bonduel, he was the only son of Louis and Florence Boettcher. He attended Friedens Lutheran Church, Bonduel his entire life, where he was confirmed, served on the church council and was a longtime member of the dartball team.

He served in the United States Army from 1952 to 1954 and upon his discharge returned home to marry the former Rosella Lepinski at Friedens Church on Nov. 14, 1954. They celebrated their 57th wedding anniversary prior to her death in 2011. The couple ran a successful dairy farm for 24 years. After selling the farm in 1978 they built a home off Highway 47 by Slab City and then started a catering business, eventually operating out of the Fox Ballroom in Cecil. They catered together for over 30 years, until their retirement in 2010. He worked in the background, but was always there supporting whatever was his wife’s newest project. In addition to farming and catering, he drove bus for the Bonduel School District for many years and was well liked by the students.

He was known throughout the community for his ability to fix nearly anything and had a shop behind the house where he did his work as a self-taught machinist, welding, cutting and repairing. He enjoyed designing and building work trailers and other items often seen on sale on the front lawn of their home. His other passions he excelled at were playing cards and shooting pool.

The couple loved to travel and owned several Honda touring motorcycles, enjoying numerous road trips traveling across the entire country visiting family and friends, including across the Appalachian Mountains and the Blue Ridge Parkway. They also traveled to Hawaii, Europe and Africa. They enjoyed dancing to polka music and attended Sunday polka dances. He outfitted his motorcycle with a stereo to play polka music and could be heard coming blocks away.

Surviving are four children, Russell (Darlene) Boettcher of De Pere, Marcelene (Jim) Betzner of Bonduel, Kristyne (Lee) Ericson of Pulaski and Kalvin (Cheryl) Boettcher of Shawano; nine grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; sisters, Mary Jean Tolzman of Gillett, Lois Weisnicht of Shawano and Sandi (Mike) Kovach of Clintonville.

He is further survived by brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Bernard (Eleanor) Lepinski of Coleman, Angie (Ed) Patenaude of Lena, Paul (Linda) Lepinski, Bob (Betty) Lepinski, Tom (Karen) Lepinski, Mary (John) Boyd and Joan Fischer, all of Oregon, Alice (Vernon) Garrett of Washington, Joyce (Tony) Moser of Florida and JoAnn Lepinski of Missouri.

In addition to his parents and his wife, Rosella, he was preceded in death by an infant sister, Marceline; his in-laws, John and Francis Lepinski and numerous brothers-in-law.

Funeral services were held on Thursday, March 28 at 11 a.m. at Friedens Lutheran Church in Bonduel with Rev. Virgil Hansen officiating. Family and friends called on Wednesday, March 27 at the church from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and on Thursday from 10 a.m. until time of service. Interment was at Friedens Church Cemetery, Bonduel with military rites conducted by the Bonduel American Legion Post #217. Zastrow Funeral Home assisted the family.


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