Friday, August 5, 2011

Donald James Theres, aka 'Bud' or 'Fuzzy'

With his loving family by his side, Donald J. Theres, aka “Bud” or “Fuzzy,” age 86, passed away peacefully Friday morning August 5, 2011. Donald was born in Racine May 14, 1925, son of the late Jacob and Monica (nee: Bernhardt) Theres.

Don was a proud graduate of St. Catherine’s High School “Class of 1943.” Because of Don enlisting and rushing to join the war effort, he never received his diploma until sixty years later with the “Class of 2003.” During World War II, he proudly served in the U.S. Navy, while stationed in the Pacific Theater. Bud remained in the service for twenty-nine years, retiring as Chief Boatswain Mate in 1972 and was a member of the VFW and Navy Ship #60 Club Ship. On July 2, 1949, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, Don was united in marriage to the love of his life, Ione Tuttle.

Affectionately known as “Fuzzy,” he was employed for twenty-six years as a firefighter for the Racine Fire Department, retiring as a Lieutenant in 1986, and was a member of the Racine Retired Firefighter Club. Following retirement, Bud and his wife Ione moved to Kentucky for eight years before travelling the states in their RV and became members of MIL-WIT, (Military Winnebago Itasca Travelers).

In his younger years, Bud was involved with the Sea Scouts, the Racine Saints Band and the Racine Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps. He loved dancing with his wife and was a member of the McGovern Park dancers and the Frankfort Square Circlers. With a great love for cooking, Bud cooked for Kilbourn Gardens, Kewpees, Dominican College, RAMAC dinners and the chicken dinners at St. Rita Church Festival, where he was a member for many years. He also enjoyed his Wilson Park model train club, deer hunting, golfing and skiing. Above all, it was his time spent with his family camping that gave him the most joy. He will be dearly missed.

Survivors include his loving wife, Ione, of 62 years; his children, Deborah Theres of Warren, MI, Gregory (Pamela) Theres of Galesville, WI, Gwynne Theres of Greenfield, Donelle (Greg) Slade of Milwaukee; grandchildren, Noelle (Eric) Grunwald, Kyle (Sarah) Theres, AshLey (Nate) Grochowski, KatiLyn Theres, Gregory Jr., Antonio and Alycia Slade, Rayna, Rosa, Claira and Paloma; great-grandchildren, JT and Alaric Theres, Lilly Lauer and Donovan Grochowski; sisters-in-law, Donna Euting of Kenosha, Bernice Tuttle of Racine. In addition to his parents, he also was preceded in death by his sister, LaVerne, and his granddaughter, RalphAnn.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Rita Catholic Church, 4339 Douglas Ave., on Tuesday August 9, 2011, at 6 p.m., with Rev. Kevin Mullins OSA officiating. Relatives and friends may meet with the family at the church Tuesday from 4 p.m. until time of Mass at 6 p.m. Entombment with Full Military Honors will be held Wednesday at Holy Cross Cemetery, Hwy 32, at 11 a.m. Memorials to the American Heart Association or one’s favorite charity have been suggested.

The Theres family extends a special thank you to Steve McCarley.

803 Main St., Racine (262) 634-7888

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