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Obituary for Ronald E. Bockenhauer


Ronald E. Bockenhauer
 
Ronald Edwin Bockenhauer, 75, of West Salem, passed away Friday, December 3, 2010, surrounded by family at Mulder Health Care Facility, West Salem.
Ron was born February 23, 1935, to Clarence and Dorothy (Meyer) Bockenhauer and was baptized on October 25, 1935, at Immanuel Lutheran Church in La Crosse.  He graduated from West Salem High School in 1952.  Ron was a veteran of the U.S. Army stationed in Ulm, Germany, serving his country from 1957-1959.  On August 29, 1959, he married Susan R. McClintock at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in West Salem and she preceded him in death on October 28, 2001.  Ron and his wife farmed on the family farm in Hoyer Coulee where they raised two children, Randina and Scott.  They raised Polled Herefords and were stewards of the land.  Ron also worked full-time at Burlington Northern Railroad for 42 years as an engineer.  He was a member of NARVE #47.  Ron enjoyed hunting, fishing, and working in the woods.  He was a member of the American Chestnut Society and was honored by them for his dedication and efforts in the restoration of the American Chestnut Tree.  He was especially proud of the stand of American Chestnut trees on his property in rural West Salem, which is the largest stand of self-propagating American Chestnut trees in the United States.  His stand drew visitors from all over the United States as well as Europe, Russia, and other countries.  Ron had a love for nature and was a member of the Yellowstone National Park Foundation, the West Salem Rod & Gun Club, and the West Salem Historical Society, and also a supporter of the Lake Neshonoc Restoration Project.  Ron was a strong, determined, and ambitious man who enjoyed spending time with his five grandchildren, instilling in them a passion for nature and a strong desire to preserve the great outdoors for future generations.  On February 28, 2004, he married Beverly Hendrickson at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in West Salem.  Ron and Bev enjoyed traveling, gardening, and spending time outdoors.
Survivors include his wife, Beverly; a daughter, Randina Clements of West Salem; a son, Scott (Shari) of Mindoro; five grandchildren, Dakota (Gretchen Goodenough) Bockenhauer of Mineral Point, Wis., Kally Bockenhauer of Mindoro, and William Bockenhauer, Ronni Lynn Clements, and Frederick Clements, all of West Salem; one sister, Delores Rhyme of West Salem; one sister-in-law, Loretta Fritsch of Onalaska; one brother-in-law, Vernon (Judy) Romskog of West Salem; four step-children, Eric (Laurie Arnold) Hendrickson of West Salem, Gary (Lori Sullivan) Hendrickson of Sparta, Julie (Kent) Glumm of Chattaroy, Wash., Neil (Diane) Hendrickson of Killeen, Texas; a special friend, Shawn Wooden of La Crosse; eight step-grandchildren; three step-great-grandchildren; and several nieces, nephews, and cousins.  In addition to his first wife, he was preceded in death by his parents; a brother-in-law, Robert Rhyme; and son-in-law, John Heineck.
Memorial services will be Friday, December 10, 2010, at 11:00 a.m. at Our Savior's Lutheran Church, 359 N. Leonard St., West Salem.  Rev. J. David Bersagel and Rev. Kenneth Eggen will officiate.  Burial will be in Neshonoc Cemetery with military honors by the Berg-Hemker-Olson American Legion Post 51, West Salem, and the U.S. Army Funeral Honor Guard.  Friends may call at Jandt-Fredrickson Funeral Home, (Jostad Chapel), 121 N. Youlon St., West Salem, on Thursday from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. and at the church on Friday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of service.  Memorials may be given to Our Savior's Lutheran Church, West Salem, or the Gundersen Lutheran Cancer Research Fund.  Online condolences may be sent at www.jandtfredrickson.com