Donald R. Kammel, 87, of rural Coon Valley was called to his heavenly home Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, with his loving wife at his side. He was born on February 10, 1933, in La Crosse, to Rudy and Lucy (Klug) Kammel, attended St. Joseph's Ridge School and served in the United States Army from 1953 to 1955, during the Korean Conflict. He married Patricia Ann Vogel of La Crosse, at St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church. He farmed near Coon Valley while also working at Peter Nelson Construction and Holy Cross Seminary, in La Crosse.
Donald “Donny” was a lifetime member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church and the Coon Valley American Legion Post #116 where he served as Commander for several years and was instrumental in the development and installation of the Coon Valley Veteran’s Memorial.
He was an avid gardener, produced hundreds of gallons of maple syrup with his buddy John Thurk and his twin brother Kenny, and fought the squirrels every Fall for hickory nuts that he would crack and pick out through the winter months. True to his generous nature, he gave away nearly all the fruits of his labor. He never met a “stranger” and always took time to chat with people as though they were his friends. His concern for God’s good earth will live on in the tens of thousands of black walnut, oak and pine trees that now grace the acres of previously open farmland. His farm remains a Certified Family Forest in the Wisconsin Tree Farm Program.
Survivors include his wife Pat, four children; David (Sharon) of Madison, Tom (Kay) of Arbor Vitae, Bob (Nancy) of La Crescent, Minnesota, and Mary (Bill) Simon of La Crosse, 13 grandchildren; Carey (Michelle Grosso) Kammel, Maht Kammel, Leah (Jonathan) Lenoch, Kaitlyn (Josh) Ferry, Wade (Kim) Kammel, Will (Holly) Kammel, Caleb (Vivian) Kammel, Christian Kammel, Raeshana Kammel, Michael (Kelsey) Levenick, Nikki (Rodrigo) Olivo, Dustin and Lindsey Henslin, 6 great-grandchildren; Tormon, Olivia, Jack, Lincoln, Maesie and Rocco, one brother, Reiney (Darlene) of La Crosse, two sisters; Marian Roesler of La Crosse and Marcie (Syl Jr.) Leibl of Coon Valley, two sisters-in-law; Rosella Kammel of West Salem and Ettie Kammel-Thiele of La Crosse, and many loving relatives and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers; Gerald, Eugene and Kenny Kammel, and a sister Evelyn Mikshowsky.
A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday February 20, 2020 at St. Joseph’s Ridge Catholic Church in St. Joseph’s Ridge. Rev. Matt Marshall will officiate. Burial in St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery with military honors by the Coon Valley American Legion Post #116. A visitation will be held on Wednesday at the church from 4 to 7 p.m. with a rosary service at 7 p.m. and also on Thursday from 10 a.m. until service time. In lieu of flowers memorials may be given to the Coon Valley American Legion Post #116. The Seland Funeral Home in Coon Valley is assisting the family. Condolences may be given at selandsfuneralhome.com.
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