John D. Slewitzke, Jr., age 84, of Merrill, passed away on Thursday, April 20, 2017, at Pine Crest Nursing Home.
John was born on February 26, 1933, in Merrill, son of the late John and Theresa (Styza) Slewitzke, Sr. John married Darlene Juhlke on March 22, 1957, and they were blessed with twin daughters, Debra and Dawn. As a boy, John attended St. Francis Xavier Catholic School and was a lifelong member of the parish. John loved God and his church and enjoyed ushering at church throughout the years.
During high school John enjoyed playing basketball and football. He graduated from Merrill Senior High School in 1951, and was currently a member of the Silver M Club.
John joined the U.S. Navy in 1951. He served for four years during the Korean War and was honorably discharged. John spent the next 35 years with the Postal Service as both a city and rural carrier. On June 14, 1982, John received state honors out of 3000 of his peers as ‘Rural Carrier of the Year’. John was a leader in the postal service serving as secretary and president of the Lincoln-Langlade Rural Carriers Association, was a delegate to the state convention for 3 years, and served as local union steward at the Merrill Post Office. John also received a gold recognition plaque at the national postal convention in Rapid City, South Dakota.
John helped organize the Scottish Highland Band and traveled throughout Wisconsin to march in parades. He was the tall and proud drum major up front, leading the band. You couldn’t miss his large black hat that made him really stand out. John loved that.
John enjoyed camping and snowmobiling with family and friends. He loved to go fishing with the guys. John belonged to a bowling league for many years. John and Darlene traveled around the United States in their motor home, and later spent winters in Florida where they made lifelong friends. John was an avid Packer and Brewer fan.
John’s grandchildren were very important to him. He and Darlene would travel to Waukesha and New Berlin to attend ballet and piano recitals; choir, band, and jazz concerts; and Christmas plays.
Survivors include his wife, Darlene Slewitzke, Merrill; twin daughters, Dawn (Gerald) Anderson, New Berlin, and Debra (David) Kurtz, Waukesha; two grandchildren, Kelly (Richard) Kurtz-Raney and Evan Anderson; one great granddaughter, Amelia Raney, born July 13, 2016; and two sisters in law, Dawn Evanson, Tomahawk, and June Cizek, Weston. Besides his parents, John is preceded in death by his sister, Dorothy M. Slewitzke.
The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 1:00 P.M. on Thursday, April 27, 2017, at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, Merrill. Fr. Chris Kemp will preside. Entombment will follow in Merrill Memorial Park Mausoleum with military rites provided by the Merrill V.F.W. Post 1638 Honor Guard. Visitation will begin at the church on Thursday, April 27th at 12:30 P.M.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church.
Online condolences may be made at www.taylorstinefuneralhome.com.
The Taylor-Stine Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Merrill, is assisting the family.