Hafemeister Funeral Home And Cremation Service
John R. Byrne
Service: November 15, 2014
John R. Byrne
John R. Byrne, age 88 of Watertown, passed away on Sunday morning November 9, 2014 at Marquardt Health Center.
John Robert Byrne was born on October 11, 1926 in Watertown the son of Raphael and Frances (Paulik) Byrne. John was a graduate of the Watertown High School in 1944 as the Salutatorian. He then graduated from Marquette University in Milwaukee in 1947 with a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering. On June 10, 1950 he married Joyce M. Wendorf in West Bend.
John was licensed as a Professional Engineer in the State of Wisconsin. He worked as a Design Engineer for twelve years in Chicago, Illinois before returning to Wisconsin to work many years as the Chief Engineer and later as the V.P. of Engineering for Plascon in Oconomowoc. He received several US patents concerning the molding of plastics and presented paper to the Society of Engineers on his theory of Plastic Molding.
John was a member of St. Bernard’s Catholic Church and the Resurrection Choir for many years. John was an artist working primarily in oil and watercolors. His art talent was first notice when he was in grade school. In retirement he painted large murals of Watertown and Wisconsin scenes in the Watertown Senior Center, the Watertown Hospital, the walkway between the hospital and Golden Living Center, the Silver Eagle Saloon and Turner Hall. John was a former member of the Curtain Club in Watertown where he did everything from building and painting sets to acting and singing. He was known for the poems, limericks and prayers he wrote for the special occasions of relatives and friends. John was a member of the Watertown Senior Center.
John is survived by his six children, Robert (Donna) Byrne of New Auburn, Janet (Michael) Walsh of South Daytona, FL; Thomas (Lina) Byrne of Port Washington; Elizabeth (Wayne) Madsen of Kokomo, IN; Margaret (Glenn) Willman of Watertown and Nancy Miller of River Falls; twelve grandchildren, Rebecca Miller, Julia Walsh, Nicholas Byrne, Patrick Byrne, Jacqueline Hamlin, Daniel Madsen, Jeffrey Pauli, Emily Dreisler, Lisa Madsen, Abigail Byrne, Kathleen Miller and Evan Miller; five great grandchildren, Vance Denk, Sophia Miller, Isla Byrne, Henry Miller and Harper Hamilton, two sister; Mary (Robert) Noon and Gertrude Peirick both of Watertown, numerous nieces, nephews other relatives and friends.
John was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Joyce on March 3, 2014 and a sister Rose Burke.
A Funeral Mass will be held on Saturday November 15, 2014 at 11 am at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church in Watertown with Father Patrick Wendler, Celebrant. Burial will be in St. Bernard’s Catholic Cemetery in Watertown. Relatives and friends may call at the church on Saturday from 10 am until the time of the service. Memorials, if desired may be made to St. Bernard’s Education Fund. The Hafemeister Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Watertown are serving the family. Online condolences may be made at www.hafemeisterfh.com.
The family would like to thank the caregivers at Marquardt Health Center.
John was a poor farm boy who was blessed with a loving wife and family and talents to write, paint and sing. He was thankful for these blessings. His wish for himself and his friends was that the Good Lord would take a liking to them, but not too soon. His wish was granted on November 9th, at the age of eighty-eight, truly the luck of the Irish.
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