Michael J. Gonring Jr.

Michael J. Gonring Jr., 85, of West Bend passed away unexpectedly at home on July 28, 2007.

He was born March 7, 1922 in Nabob to Michael and Lena (nee Weber) Gonring and grew up above the family-owned tavern and dining room in downtown West Bend.

He graduated from Holy Angels Grade School in 1935 and West Bend High School in 1939.

Michael enrolled at Marquette University, but his education was interrupted when called to serve his country in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II.

While on furlough in May of 1945, he married Patricia Cox, his loving wife of 62 years.

Upon his discharge from the service, he returned to Marquette and graduated from Marquette Law School in 1948.

After practicing law as a sole practitioner in Allenton for three years, Michael was approached by The First National Bank of West Bend (now M&I) and hired to manage its trust department.

He retired in 1984 as senior vice president and trust officer and a member of its board of directors.

Michael was extremely active in the community serving as a police justice for the city of West Bend, a member of the West Bend School Board, the Washington County Civil Service Commission and the West Bend Police and Fire Commission.

He also chaired several fund raisers and development committees, including five years as chairman of the St. Joseph’s Hospital Capitol Development Committee and as county chairman of the Archbishop’s Fund Appeal.

Michael had been an active member of the Noon Kiwanis Club, the Knights of Columbus, the American Legion and the Loyal Order of the Moose.

He was committed to his faith and his lifelong church, Holy Angels, where he served in various capacities from lector to parish council.

Michael was the originator of the Holy Angels School Trust Fund.

Survivors include his wife, Patty; five children, Beth (Mark) Allen of Mesa, Ariz., Michael III (Robin) of Whitefish Bay, Hon. Andrew (Pat) of West Bend, Amy (Dick) Fotsch of Elm Grove and Meg (Steve) Hopp of Akron, Ohio; 23 grandchildren; and 26 great-grandchildren.

Preceding him in death were his parents; his brother, Robert; and his sister, Gladys.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Friday, Aug. 3, at 10a.m. at Holy Angels Catholic Church, with Rev. Gerald Brittain presiding. Please meet at church for Mass.

Visitation will be Thursday at the Schmidt Funeral Home in West Bend starting at 4 p.m. with a prayer vigil at 7:30 p.m.

Memorials may be made to the Holy Angels School Trust Fund.


Dad, you did a good job.