Roger W. Hulke, 88, of Merrill, went to his eternal home Saturday, February 17, 2018. He lived a long, blessed life.
Roger was born January 25, 1930, in Merrill, to William and Agnes (Schmidtke) Hulke. He married Elizabeth ‘Betty’ Ristau on September 12, 1953 at St. John Lutheran Church, Merrill – a beautiful union that lasted 64 years. Roger was a lifelong, active member of St. John Lutheran Church, attending its grade school as a child. He served state-side in the United States Air Force during the Korean War. Roger set God and country as his highest priorities in life.
Roger worked at the former Ward Paper in Merrill from 1951 until his retirement in 1992. He enjoyed bird and deer hunting, and loved to tell stories about those adventures (sometimes multiple times J). Roger kept a beautiful garden and was happy to share his produce with friends and neighbors.
Roger was a jolly guy, and later in his life found his happy place at McDonald’s drinking coffee, solving the World’s problems, and analyzing his favorite sports teams’ performances. Roger also had an amazing group of Fish Fry Friday Friends that he looked forward to seeing each week.
Roger was an avid fan of the Brewers, Badgers and Packers. His favorite team by far was the Merrill Bluejays. He followed many high school sports teams, cheering especially loud when his grandchildren or great-grandchildren were playing. Roger was a great patriarch that was invested in the lives of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and one could often find him with a smile on his face, bragging about them.
Survivors include his wife, Elizabeth ‘Betty’ Hulke of Merrill; daughters, Nancy (Gary) Porath and Kathy (Ned) Seubert of Merrill; son, James (Jane) Hulke of LaCrosse; seven grandchildren, Leah (Rod) Akey of Merrill, Rachel Fischer of Victoria, MN, Luke (Meghan) Porath of Menomonee Falls, Brad Seubert of Wauwatosa, Andy (Cassandra) Seubert of Weston, Jessica Macha of Holmen and Ben Hulke of Wheat Ridge, CO; seven great-grandchildren, Abe, Eve, Aubrey, Brooks, Giana, Ari and Alex; sister, Laura Murphy of Appleton; and sisters-in-law, Veryl ‘Faye’ Hulke of Merrill and Shirley Hulke of Neenah. Roger was preceded in death by his parents, William and Agnes Hulke; his sisters, Irene Pick, Emma Mahn, Alice Nielsen, Vernette Zimmerman, Elaine Dahm and an infant sister; and his brothers, Harlin ‘Harley’ Hulke and David Hulke.
The funeral service for Roger will be held at 11:00 A.M. Thursday, February 22, 2018 at St. John Lutheran Church, Merrill. Rev. David Szeto will officiate. Burial will take place at Merrill Memorial Park Cemetery with graveside military rites conducted by V.F.W. Post 1638 – Merrill. Visitation will be held from 4:00 P.M. until 7:00 P.M. Wednesday at the Taylor-Stine Funeral Home and after 10:00 A.M. Thursday at the church. Taylor-Stine Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Merrill, is assisting the family with arrangements.
Online condolences may be made at www.taylorstinefuneralhome.com
The family suggests memorials be directed to St. John Lutheran Church or School, or the Never Forgotten Honor Flight.