Ralph Edward Houseman, 95

Attorney Ralph Edward Houseman was born to eternal life on Feb. 13, 
2012, surrounded by his loving children.

Ralph is reunited with his precious wife, Jeanne; his adored parents, 
Richard and Hilda; and older brother, Oliver. He is deeply mourned by 
his beloved children, Mary (partner Janis Shogren), son Ralph, Kathy 
Houseman-Rostad (husband Richard); treasured granddaughter, Alana Day 
Rostad; special loving family, Mary Jane Eichman and Lee Adrian; law 
partners and staff at Houseman and Feind (especially Robert Feind and 
Carolyn Picciolo); Pastor Tim Perkins; extended family and friends 
who enriched Ralph’s life.

Ralph was born to this life on July 29, 1916, in La Porte, Ind. His 
earliest memories were of horse-drawn carriages, Model T Fords and 
silent movies. During the height of the Great Depression, the family 
settled in Milwaukee. Ralph graduated from Washington High School in 
1933. He pursued his passion for journalism by enrolling in the 
College of Journalism at Marquette University then decided on a 
career in law.

Ralph was an accomplished public speaker and a member of the 
Marquette intercollegiate debate team. He was involved in politics 
and, prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor, an active member of the 
American First Committee. In 1939, at the age of 22, he graduated 
from Marquette’s School of Law and began the practice of law in the 
then rural hamlet of Grafton.

When war broke out, Ralph answered the call to service and joined the 
United States Navy. In the Navy, he trained at Columbia University 
and Harvard Business School. Ralph served with honor as a second 
lieutenant on board the USS Bogue CVE9, an aircraft carrier that 
engaged in anti-submarine and convoy duty. He served in the North 
Atlantic and the Pacific; then joined the occupation forces in Japan. 
Ralph was discharged when the war ended and was recalled to active 
duty during the Korean War.

In 1948, Ralph married the love of his life, his wife of nearly 62 
years, Jeanne Roxanna Mc Mahan. They lived in Thiensville and became 
devoted parents to three children. Ralph practiced law in Grafton for 
over 70 years and worked well into his 90th year. He served with 
distinction as village attorney for Thiensville and Grafton, attorney 
for the Grafton School District, on the board of directors of the 
former Deaconess, Good Samaritan and Sinai Samaritan hospitals, the 
board of directors for Grafton State Bank and the League of Wisconsin 
Municipalities, president of the Ozaukee County Bar Association and 
church elder at Bethel Bethany United Church of Christ. He was a 
proud World War II veteran and member of Rose- Harms American Legion 
Post 355.

In addition to his many gifts and accomplishments, Ralph possessed a 
remarkably humble nature and a quiet, gentle, dignified presence. He 
was kind and giving; performing countless acts of charity and 
compassion in his long life. Ralph cultivated a deep faith and lived 
his life in an authentic Christian manner. He was witty and 
intelligent; conversant about current events (especially politics) 
and the long history which he had lived.

As he aged, Ralph showed an amazing strength of character and 
persistent determination. He was a living inspiration to his family 
as well as a wise sage and mentor to his law partners.
A celebration of Ralph’s life was held at at Lumen Christi Catholic 
Church, 138 Buntrock Ave., Thiensville, on Feb. 18. Interment was 
held at Resurrection Cemetery, Mequon.

Contributions to the Lumen Christi School Endowment Fund in both 
Ralph and Jeanne’s memory are greatly appreciated.
He is now at peace in the arms of his loving Creator.
Schramka-Densow Funeral Home in Thiensville has served the family. 
For online condolences, please visit www.schramka-densow.com.