William A. Wagner (Bill) passed away on November 10, 2021 at the age of 84 at home surrounded by his loving family. He was born on September 26, 1937, the son of Oscar and Gertrude Wagner. Bill was born, raised and lived his entire life in Hartford. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps in 1955 and was honorably discharged in 1959. Bill married Rosemary Penoske on October 31, 1959 and he started Bill Wagner Construction with Rosemary as his partner and bookkeeper in 1961. Together, they raised eight children. He worked alongside his sons Whitey and Ed until he retired in 2014. In 1983, Bill and Rosemary purchased Wagner’s Landing in Neosho, WI. Rosemary operated the bar until 2003. Bill was dedicated to his family and friends and took great pride in everything he did, especially his work as a mason. Bill was a creative craft master and his wheels were always turning. He would often sketch his ideas onto napkins and the finished product would be a true masterpiece. He garnered a great respect and reputation in the community. The never-ending word of mouth and repeat business spoke to the quality of his work. In his free time, he spent many hours outdoors with his passions… hunting and tree- planting. Bill also enjoyed hunting trips with his close friends throughout the United States and Canada. Annually, he looked forward to hunting with his family at the cabin up north. He has many large game trophy mounts that fill the trophy room in their home. Throughout the years, Bill was a true conservationist and arborist, planting thousands of trees. In fact, Bill was planting trees up until the week before he passed away. He was always willing to help people in need and welcomed anyone into his home. They were offered a coffee and a seat at the table. Many laughs were exchanged because Bill was a jokester with a witty sense of humor and a contagious laugh.
Bill is preceded in death by his wife, Rosemary in 2013; brothers Oscar Jr. and James (Jimbo) Wagner; brother-in-law David (Butch) Penoske; Aunt Clara “Toots” Reuter; his parents, Oscar Sr. and Gertrude Wagner, and his parents-in-law, Ed and Agnes Penoske.
He is survived by his eight children, Brenda (Jim) Vogt of Hartford; Toby (Bill) Schickert of Slinger; Whitey (Mary) Wagner of Hartford; Laura (Tony) Strobel of Neosho; Mary (Kevin) Gehring of Iron Ridge; Ed (Pam) Wagner of Rubicon; Nikki (Jeff) Zimdars of Hartford; Bobbie Jo (Jim) Zuern of Iron Ridge. He is also survived by 20 grandchildren, Jacob and Lucas (Kendra) Vogt, Whitney and Katelyn Schickert, Mason and Logan (Kelley) Wagner, Emily, Abigail, Madeline, Gregory and Ericka Gehring, Lindsey, Tyler and Brandie Wagner, Myles and Bryce Zimdars and Ryan, Rachel, Sarah and Adam Zuern; four great grandchildren, Jolene and Lydia Wagner, Collins Vogt and Norah Wagner. He is further survived by his brothers, Mike (Darlene) Wagner, Paul (Kim) Wagner and sister-in-law Chris Wagner.
Special thanks to Marcy and Jill who provided care and services for Bill and for the many friends that continued to offer compassion and support.
“Some people don’t believe in heroes, but they haven’t met our dad.”
Memorials can be given to the Washington County Humane Society or a charity of your choice.
The Berndt-Ledesma Funeral Home is serving the family.
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