Ronald Sprehn

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Ronald Sprehn

February 26, 1940 - January 21, 2019

Ronald Sprehn Ronald “Ron” Henry Sprehn
Ronald “Ron” Henry Sprehn, 78, devoted husband, father and grandpa, passed from this life to be with his Savior Monday, Jan. 21, 2019, from a sudden and unexpected heart attack. His father lived to celebrate a 100th birthday and thoughts were that he would do the same.
He was born Feb. 26, 1940, to Maurice Roberts and Elaine Dorothy (Achterkirch) Sprehn and grew up in Bangor, attending St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran School and graduating from Bangor High School in 1958.
After graduation, Ron chose to join the 32nd Engineer Co., National Guard and served for 22 years. It was at the dedication of the new Onalaska Armory that Ron met the love of his life, JoAnn Marie (Johnson), asking her if she'd like to drive his car, a 1959 Ford Skyliner Galaxie 500 retractable hardtop. That was his favorite car. They married May 19, 1962, at the First Lutheran Church in Onalaska and enjoyed 56 years with children, Melissa (Jeff) Holthaus, Jonathan (Kristen) Sprehn, Matthew (Stephanie) Sprehn; and grandchildren, Kaylin (Jake) Hillestad, McKenzie (Brandon) Rude, Laura (Naul) Segovia, Emma, Grace, Daniel (Shannon) Sprehn; and great-grandchildren, Stella, Nathan, Rebecca (Nathan Stetzer), Olivia and Sophia Sprehn.
Making their original home in Bangor, Ron worked at the Sprehn Feed Mill, where he had helped his dad from early teenage years. He later worked as a lineman for the Bangor Utilities. Moving their family to a new home addition in Onalaska in 1971, he was working at Kmart, as department manager, leaving for the beer business, working at G. Heileman Brewing Company later City Brewery, until his retirement in 2005. In his “retirement,” his social personality and knowledge of the rural Coulee Region lead him to be a courtesy driver at Brenengen Automotive-West Salem, which he enjoyed for 14 years and had just “parked” on Dec. 27, 2018. He also took time in the spring to help his cousins, Ron and Robbie Tenner, with corn seed deliveries and loved visiting the farming community.
Ron's interest in woodworking was sparked by Pastor Arden Stuebs, who was Pastor at St. Paul's Lutheran Church. He bought a table saw and setup his first workshop in the basement of his Grandma Lil's home. He was always there to help family and friends with projects or home remodeling and was very proud of his work, as he should have been. He left his skilled footprint with his sons. Through the creativity and designs of JoAnn, Ron's craftsmanship in wood adorns every room in their home. His love for wood carried over to his days of cutting and splitting trees to fuel the wood-stove in their home, where family could enjoy 90 degrees on sub zero days!
Ron enjoyed gun and bow deer hunting with Matthew and Daniel, trap shooting, boating, bowling in couples league with JoAnn, duck hunting with his long time friend, Dick Bedessem, snowmobiling and family time at his parent's cottage in Hatfield, Wis. There were trips to Canada fishing with his father, sons, grandsons, son-in-law and McKenzie. He especially loved those “let's go for a ride” days with his wife and trips with travels by car, north, east, south and west on the back roads so they could stop at quaint restaurants or antique stores. Each trip included coming home with some treasure for their home or yard. Every month there were luncheons with his neighbors, having gone to 109 different locations, with his last luncheon on the Monday of his death.
He is survived by his wife; children; and grandchildren; his brother, David (Edie) Sprehn of Nekoosa, Wis.,nieces, Keri Sprehn Durkin and Kelly Brauns; brother-in-law, Dennis Johnson of Janesville, Wis., niece, Diane (Tom) Durrant and nephew, Erik (Amy) Johnson; sister-in-law, Sharon Lemke Mahlum of Onalaska, niece, Lisa Lock and nephew, John (Melissa) Lemke; and his cousins that were dear to him. Family who passed before him were his parents; grandparents, Arnold and Lillian Sprehn, Henry and Phoebe Achterkirch; sister-in-law, Judy Johnson; brother-in-law, Pete Mahlum; and many special relatives.
Funeral services for Ron will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 30, at First Lutheran Church, 410 Main St. in Onalaska. Pastors Jason Stanton and Karyn Brodenschatz will officiate. Burial will follow in the Onalaska Cemetery. A visitation will be held from 9 a.m. until the time of service Wednesday at the church. Dickinson Funeral Home will be assisting the family with services. Online condolences may be sent at
The family wishes to thank first responders and emergency staff for the care provided to Ron at the accident scene.
There will remain places in our hearts for this kind, sensitive and compassionate man who dearly loved his wife, “Josie”, children, grandchildren, family and friends. He was a proud grandpa and would do anything for anybody. Rest in peace, we are sad and know that you would be sad for us. We will love you forever.
Published on January 27, 2019
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9 posts

Mike and Jody Olson
Feb 10, 2019
Sprehn family. Sorry to hear of Ron's passing. So many great memories with Ron and Morrie at Hatfield deer hunting and enjoying their company. Those memories are some of the best times of my llife. So sorry!!
Laura Tulius
Jan 29, 2019
In this very difficult time for your family please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers. Cherish his memory and each other to help you get through this. So very sorry for your loss.
Tara Nelson
Jan 28, 2019
I was married to Brian Woxland for many years. Joann made the cake for my daughters wedding. Brian and I have both moved on. I offer my condolences with the deepest sympathy. God bless you all! I hope that if you have needs, you reach out as death is never alone. I treasure my time being a part of your family.
Carole & Doug Myhre
Jan 28, 2019
We were so sorry to hear about the tragic accident and Ron's death. .Our thought and prayers are with you all.
Glenn & Roxanne Woxland
Jan 28, 2019
Our thoughts have been with your family the past week. Ron was a good & kind man & sounds like he made use of his short 78 years!! Sending our love, hugs & prayers to you all. God Bless❤️❤️
Deb Christianson
Jan 28, 2019
Dave and Edie - so very sorry for your loss. Ron was much too young to leave this good earth.
I think of you often, Edie - all the hours working together on the renewals.
I'm up to six grandkids and still working by choice.
Thoughts and prayers to your family.
Deb@Rogers Benefit Group
Deanna (Horman) Mason
Jan 28, 2019
I wish I could take away your pain. Just know that I am thinking about you and praying for comfort for you and your family.
Dave & Kim Woggon
Jan 27, 2019
Melissa & family, we were saddened to hear the news of your dad's passing. Out thoughts and prayers have and will be will you during your family loss. Love you guys.
~Dave & Kim Woggon
Marion Naegle
Jan 27, 2019
JoAnn I am so sorry to hear of Ron's passing.
Many years ago he paneled rooms in my house and did a terrific job. You are in my thoughts at this sad time.