Willard F. "Bill" Coonen
Willard (Bill) F. Coonen, age 88, formerly of Brillion, passed away peacefully in his sleep Sunday, Feb. 26, 2012 at Samaritan Health Center in West Bend. He was born July 24, 1923 to Petronella (Biese) and James L. Coonen of Dundas. He graduated from Kaukauna High School and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Bill and the former Kathryn Kubale were married on April 18, 1953 in Reedsville. Bill was a member of the U.S. Army during World War II and saw extensive action in the European Theater. His combat decorations include the E.T.O. ribbon with a silver star and bronze arrowhead designating participation in five battle campaigns and the "D-Day" invasion in Normandy. He was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for service while a member of a forward observing team, and the Purple Heart for being wounded in the "Battle of the Bulge." He was a sergeant when discharged. He was employed by the Farm Equipment Division of the Brillion Iron Works for over thirty-three years and was the General Sales Manager of the division from 1966 to the time of his retirement in 1986. Bill was a member of the Brillion Lions Club, the American Legion Post No. 126 and a volunteer distributor for Meals on Wheels. Bill was the youngest, and the last surviving of the 12 children of Nell and James Coonen. Survivors include his wife Katie (West Bend), his children Fr. Tim, OMI, of Ottawa, Canada, Carrie Plamann (Rolf Hagberg) of Duluth, MN, Paula (Jeff) Stadtmueller of Cottage Grove, WI, and Laura (Randy) Westerman of Slinger, WI; 8 grandchildren; 3 great-grandchildren; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Jacqueline Coonen of Columbus OH, Larry and Dottie Kubale of Middleton, Bernard and Karen Kubale of Merton, Dorothy Reinke of Reedsville, and Frances Kubale of Green Bay; many nieces and nephews, other relatives, and friends. A mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, March 3, 2012 at Holy Family Catholic Church in Brillion with his son Fr. Tim officiating. Gathering will begin at 9 30 a.m., with the liturgy beginning at 11 a.m. A memorial fund has been established in Bill’s memory. The Wieting Funeral Home of Brillion is assisting the family with the arrangements. Online condolences may be made at www.wieting-funeralhome.com.