Gary ‘Max’ Ruffert, 62

Our Dad, Gary “Max” Ruffert, passed away unexpectedly at the age of 62 on Oct. 8, 2013, in Saukville.

A celebration of his life was held at Mueller Funeral Home in Grafton on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013, at 6 p.m. and family received friends and relatives on Sunday from 2 p.m. until 5:45 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, memorials to the Outdoor Adventure Foundation, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation or to the American Cancer Society are appreciated. For online condolences, please visit

Gary was born on Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14, 1951, to his loving parents, Max and LaVerne Ruffert in Milwaukee. He spent most of his life in Grafton, where he attended St. Paul Lutheran School and Grafton High School. He graduated from Grafton High School, class of 1969.

Gary, and the entire Ruffert family, was a pillar of the Grafton community. Everyone knew and loved them. He grew up with one sister, Gail, with whom he was very close. Gary even chose to raise his own children in the same community. He was married to Kim (nee Butcher) from 1979 to 1995 and was blessed with two daughters, Kelly and Courtney. In 1998, Gary married Linda (nee Flaherty), and they enjoyed 15 years of a happy marriage while residing in Saukville. Gary and Linda enjoyed raising their German shorthair pointers (Sadie, McGee, and Mag-pie) and spending time with family and friends.

Gary was known as a genuine, caring, and extremely thoughtful person. He would do anything for anyone. Whether it was fixing cars as a body shop manager or moving his friends and family in and out of residences, Gary would always go an extra mile to make sure others were taken care of. His many dear friends are blessed with the memories of Gary’s generosity that came in many forms.

Gary was a man of many passions and loved the simple things in life. Basketball in the driveway, fishing with his buddies, holidays with family, car racing and fixing cars (especially old ones), eating (especially pizza and dessert) and playing poker and cribbage were his main hobbies early in life. Later in life, he indulged in all of the above and added Harley-Davidson, his dogs, hunting, grilling and doting on his two grandsons.

There are certain favorites that will always remind us of Gary: Heinz ketchup, Life is Good apparel, Tomaso’s pizza, lemon meringue and French silk pie, endless bottles of cologne, Sunday morning breakfast, blueberry muffins, model cars and trains, the smell of his tobacco pipe and a fire burning in the fireplace.

He was able to retire on his 62nd birthday, Feb. 14, 2013. He spent his well-deserved retirement completing house projects, doing more hunting and fishing and simply taking it easy. He recently became a grandpa to Max (Kelly’s son) and Cooper (Courtney’s son) and was looking forward to having his own boys to share his passions with. Max and Cooper will always have their Grandpa looking over them.

Gary will be remembered as a happy and proud father, grandfather, husband, son, brother, uncle, friend,and coworker. He always found the good in people and he always brought out the good in others. He truly loved life and all that had been given to him.

Dad, we hope you are eating peanut butter toast and hot chocolate for dinner and dancing with Grandma and Grandpa in heaven. We love and miss you. – Kelly and Courtney Gary is survived by beloved best friend and wife, Linda (nee Flaherty). He is the loving dad of daughters Kelly (Ben) Croatt and Courtney (Jimmy) Ingman; proud grandpa of Max Croatt and Cooper Ingman; cherished brother of Gail (Dennis) Mudler; dear son-in-law of Wayne and Elaine Flaherty; and loving brother-in-law of Brenda (Mike “Ernie”) Eernisse and Terry (Beth) Flaherty. He is further survived by nieces, nephews, relatives and special friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Max and LaVerne Ruffert.

Mueller Funeral Home & Crematory is assisting the family.