Walter Joseph "Wally" Stephan

Walter Joseph "Wally" Stephan, 85, of Richfield, died peacefully July 22, 2007 at home. He was born March 3, 1922 in Germantown to Albert and Anna Stephan.

He was retired from Gehl Co., West Bend. Walter was a member of the Gehl Hexelbank Club, lifetime member of St. Boniface Parish, member of Germantown Historical Society and a past member of Milwaukee Liedertafel.

Walter was an avid historian who shared his German heritage, farming and local history with younger generations. He could explain the history of land ownership in the local plat books and enjoyed traveling to Germany with his wife to visit the land of their ancestors. Wally took pleasure in polka and German music and liked to sing along.

The homestead farm that his grandparents started in 1854 in Germantown was his passion. A creative handyman, Walter could repair anything. He loved his land, animals, and driving tractors. He would take his antique tractors, wagons, and horse buggy in local parades. Family members would participate by wearing ethnic clothing.

Walter was a devoted husband and dad. He made sure all of his children received a good education. Catholic values were deep-rooted, and Walter ingrained these with his family. His humble, easygoing manner and subtle humor endeared him to his family and friends.

He was the loving husband for 62 years of Ethel (nee Heisdorf). Her dedication to his care allowed Wally to remain at home during the lengthy decline in his health. Beloved father of Mark (Joann) Stephan, Jane (John) Nacker, Jean (Brad) Hogan, John (Jean) Stephan, and Joan (Mark) Weyer. Cherished Grandpa of Andy, Matt, and Karen Stephan , John C. and James Nacker, Melissa and Nick Hogan, Joseph and Anna Stephan, and Alex and Taylor Weyer. Brother of Norbert (Germaine) Stephan and the late Lawrence, Henry, John, and Louis. Also survived by sister-in-law Florence Stephan, brother-in-law Joe (Rose) Heisdorf and other relatives and friends.

Visitation will be Saturday, July 28, 2007 from 9-10:30 a.m. at St. Boniface Church, W204 N11924 Goldendale Rd. , Germantown, followed by Memorial Mass at 10:30 a.m. Interment will be private for the family.

In lieu of flowers, memorials suggested to St. Boniface Food Pantry, Alzheimers Association, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, or charity of your choice.

The family wishes to extend sincere gratitude to VITAS Hospice and Comfort Keepers for their care.

Schramka-Herrick Funeral Home in Menomonee Falls is assisting the family.