George M. Ducklow
George M. Ducklow, 77, of Johnson Creek, passed away June 7, 2017, due to complications from surgery.
George was born May 17, 1940, in Oconomowoc, to Maurice and Irma (Thurow) Ducklow. He was baptized and confirmed at Zion Episcopal Church in Oconomowoc.
George grew up in a well-known, hard-working farm family in Oconomowoc. The family raised different crops and animals throughout the years, and excelled in raising champion Oxford sheep, which they showed at the Wisconsin State Fair. The Ducklow Farm, also known as "Elm Crest Farm," will be recognized later this summer at the Wisconsin State Fair as a "Century Farm," having been owned by the same family for over 100 years. The farm is where he developed his love for tractors and farm equipment, something that stayed with him throughout his personal and professional career.
George attended Oconomowoc elementary, middle and high schools, graduating in 1958. After high school, he attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison for a short time until he made the difficult decision to return home to help his parents run the farm. One of his fondest memories was getting to play his French horn with the Oconomowoc Legion Band in the 1958 Rose Bowl Parade.
He met his wife while attending a dance at Turner Hall and married the former Ruth Hanke on July 28, 1962, at St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Watertown. Together they raised four children, Darrell (Pam) Ducklow of Johnson Creek, Douglas (Tamara) Ducklow of River Falls, Ann (Gregg) Holz of Hortonville and Amy (John) Hartwig of Fort Atkinson. He found joy spending time with his grandchildren going to their activities, including sporting events and band/choir concerts. Grandpa George passed on his love of fishing to his grandsons. He enjoyed visiting around the kitchen table with family and friends, telling stories and eventually steering the conversation to take a "temperature reading" on their lives and the world around them.
George was always willing to offer his advice! George was successful in the farm implement business. He began as a mechanic and worked his way up to co-owner of Eichstaedt Implement. He built the John Deere store in Watertown from the ground up. George worked hard to make it a successful business in the community. After George sold the business to Mid-State Equipment, Inc., he stayed on as manager until his retirement n 2008.
After retirement, you could find George driving around his favorite John Deere tractor "the 4020," fishing in his ponds or sitting in his chair watching "real" Westerns as well as police/crime shows, especially "NCIS" and "Blue Bloods." George came across as a tough guy but two things really got him emotional; watching a good story on the Hallmark Channel or watching a well-fought high school/collegiate championship ball game. He will be dearly missed by his friends and family.
George is survived by Ruth, his wife of 55 years; his children; grandchildren, Cole Ducklow, Cooper Holz and Haden Hartwig; and step-grandchildren Jarred and Lucas Pechacek. He is further survived by his sister, Elizabeth Steinhoff of Evansville; sisters-in-law, Doris (James) Gindt of Hustisford, Millie (Lyn) Bully of Juneau, Linda (Robert) Fortmann of Watertown and Lillian Hanke of Dousman; brothers-in-law, Marvin (Barbara) Hanke of Juneau and Ronald Schmeling, also of Juneau; as well as many nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his infant brother Tommy; his brother-in-law Jerry Steinhoff; father-and mother-in-law, Edwin and Elsie Hanke; brothers-in-law Charles Hanke and Elroy Liesener; and sisters-in-law Elaine Liesener and Elizabeth Schmeling.
The family extends sincere appreciation to the health care team at UW Hospital for their extraordinary care and compassion.
A visitation will be held on Monday, June 12, from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. at Pederson-Nowatka Funeral Home in Watertown. A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. at Zion Episcopal Church in Oconomowoc on Tuesday, June 13, with Fr. Scott Seefeldt presiding. A second visitation will be held at the church from 10 a.m. until the time of service. Burial will be at La Belle Cemetery in Oconomowoc following the service.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be directed to Zion Episcopal Church of Oconomowoc, Tomorrow’s Hope in Jefferson, or a charity of your choice.
Pederson-Nowatka Funeral Homes, 920-261-2113, is serving the family. To place an online condolence, please visitwww.pn-fh.com