Jerome R. McGinnis, 84

Jerome R. McGinnis of Cedarburg passed away early Monday, March 24, 2014, after a brief stay at St. Luke's Hospital. He was 84 years old.

Jerry was born in Green Bay on Dec. 12, 1929, the son of Jerome C. and Mary Elizabeth (nee Manning) McGinnis. The family lived in Green Bay. Jerry graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was a veteran of the Korean War in the Navy as a Seabee. In 1961, he founded Embassy Homes. He was still active in the home-building business, working side by side with his three children on a daily basis. He built many of the apartment buildings around the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and 3,000-plus single-family homes and condominiums during his lifetime. He was a past president of the Metropolitan Builders Association of Milwaukee and Builder of the Year.

When not in the office, you could find him volunteering his time on the many organizations that were dear to him, such as the MATC Foundation Board, UW-Madison Foundation, Interfaith Caregivers of Ozaukee County, Special Spaces of Milwaukee and Rods and Relics Car Club, to name a few.  Recently, because of his love for homes, he was instrumental in securing the historic Jonathan Clark House in Mequon so that it could be preserved and restored as a living museum.

He was a man of faith and a member of St. Francis Borgia Catholic Church in Cedarburg.  Jerry enjoyed spending summers in Door County at his cottage in Egg Harbor with family and friends. He would always be part of the infamous Egg Harbor 4th of July parade in one of his classic cars packed with grandchildren. During the fall, you would find him following his beloved Green Bay Packers. He was a life-long season ticket holder from the days at County Stadium. During winter, he would be tinkering in his garage, restoring and maintaining his classic cars. You probably saw him driving around town or parked at Wayne’s Drive-In on classic car nights.

Jerry was the beloved husband of Barbara Mann McGinnis and the late Mary (nee DeGreef); loving father of Timothy (Linda), Kathy (Jim) Schmidt and Jerome (Dawn);  dear stepfather of Catherine (Sam) Roseme and Sarah Mann;  dear grandfather of Daniel (Jaime Ochoa), Kellie, Kimberly, Jennifer, Justin, Jessica (Nick) Hill, Jerome, Shannon, Lily Roseme and Stella Mann; and dear great-grandfather of Ashlyn. He is further survived by other relatives and friends.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Friday, March 28, at 1 p.m. at St. Francis Borgia Catholic Church North, 1375 Covered Bridge Road, Cedarburg.  Interment will be at St. Allouez Cemetery, Green Bay. Visitation will be at the church on Friday from 11 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorials to Interfaith Caregivers of Ozaukee County are appreciated.

Mueller Funeral Home & Crematory, Cedarburg, is honored to serve the family. Online condolences may be left at

It’s Not What You Gather, But What You Scatter That Tells What Kind Of Life You Have Lived.