Robert Illing
Feb. 11, 1926 - May 20, 2016

Robert Illing, a longtime Waukesha resident, died on Friday, May 20, 2016, at Waukesha Memorial Hospital at the age of 90 years. He was born in Whitefish Bay on Feb. 11, 1926, to Harold T. and Verna H. (nee Gross) Illing.  

He grew up on the Illingdale Farm, which started his lifelong interest in cattle and horses. Robert was a 1944 graduate of Waukesha High School and was honored to be on the state championship basketball team that year. Following high school, he proudly served his country in the Army Air Corps during WWII. When he returned to Waukesha, Robert attended Carroll College, where he played on the basketball team and where he met and fell in love with Betty. He transferred to Northwestern University where he played basketball and was an active member and president of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity.   After college, he joined the family business, and for 67 years owned and operated the Illing Company in Germantown, a container distribution business which remains in the family today.  

Robert was dedicated to the Waukesha community: He served on the board of directors for Waukesha Parks & Recreation and Independence Bank (currently Chase Bank). He was a longtime member of Merrill Hills Country Club, First Presbyterian Church, where he was active as a deacon and elder, the Waukesha Rotary Club, and the Waukesha Lodge No. 37, Free and accepted Masons. He was proud to be an alumni supporter of Carroll University. Robert had a lifelong passion for sports, he played baseball, basketball, golf and tennis. He also loved his family dogs over the years and enjoyed his home in Longboat Key, Florida, and his home on Nagawicka Lake. The greatest love of his life was his wife, Betty, and his family.  

He will be sadly missed by his children: Susan (Michael) Alber of Hartland, Laurie (Dave) Ripplinger of Nashotah and daughter-in-law Kim Illing of Waukesha. He was the dear grandfather of Michael (Jenelle) Alber of Colgate; Robert (Claire) Alber of Golden Valley, Minn.; Carey (Joseph) Alber-Milazzo of Delafield; Kayla (Joshua) Shimel of Waukesha; Kristen (John) Cagadas of Destin, Fla.; Taylor and William Ripplinger of Nashotah; Elizabeth (Ben) Fuller of Merton; Jake and Rachel Illing of Madison; and Jamie Illing of Waukesha. He is the great-grandpa to Nolan, Nathan, Adam, Cayden, Colton, Marie and Chase. He is further survived by a nephew, Peter Wolfe of San Bruno, Calif.   

He was preceded in death by his dear wife, Elizabeth “Betty” Illing, on Dec. 13, 2014; his son Jack Illing in 2013; grandson Bobby Illing in 2008; and his sister Elaine Wolfe Grady.

A service honoring Robert’s life will be held on Wednesday, May 25, at 5:30 PM at First Presbyterian Church, 810 N. East Ave., Waukesha, WI 53186, with a time to gather from 4:00 PM until 5:30 PM. The Rev. Nicole Farley will preside. A time for fellowship and refreshments will follow the service at the church. Private entombment will be held at Prairie Home Cemetery.   

Memorials in Roberts name are appreciated to Carroll University, 100 N. East Ave., Waukesha, WI 53186; First Presbyterian Church (address above); Elmbrook Humane Society, 20950 Enterprise Ave., Brookfield, WI 53045; or to Waukesha Memorial Hospital Foundation, N17-W24100 Riverwood Drive, Suite 130, Waukesha, WI 53188.  

Randle-Dable-Brisk Funeral Home, Crematory and Preplanning Services is honored to serve the family.  For further information, please call the funeral home at 262-547-4035 or visit our website at www.randledable.com for directions or to leave the family an online tribute message.