Charles “Chuck” Willard O’Donnell, 91, passed away Monday, May 14, 2018, at the Lake Hallie Memory Care surrounded by his family.
Charles was born Sept. 17, 1926, to Clayton and Leone (Jasper) O’Donnell.
He grew up on a dairy farm in Hallie and graduated from Chippewa Falls Senior High School.
He married Bernadette Samens Sept. 14, 1949. At the time of his death they had been happily married for 68 years. After his family’s farm was devastated by a “winter tornado” in December 1949, they moved to a dairy farm in Eagle Point the following spring where he was a successful farmer, businessman, and family man. He was able to take a herd of grade Holsteins and grow them into a fully registered herd during his years of farming.
Chuck worked hard while enjoying life to the fullest. He had many friends in the community and cherished them all, as well as his family and relatives. He was a faithful and supportive member of Notre Dame Catholic Church throughout his life. And he was proud of his Irish heritage, celebrating with many memorable St. Patrick’s Day parties, and he also enjoyed kicking up his feet to old-time music.
He was also a proud and supportive member of his local community, the Eagle Point Town Chairman for 12 years, Northwestern Bank Board of Directors for 23 years, the Chippewa County Farm Committee for 12 years, member of the Chippewa County Zoning Board of Adjustment for 14 years, President of the Chippewa County Snowmobile Association for six years. He served as the Treasurer of the Jim Falls Lion’s Club for 19 years and received the Melvin Jones Award and the Birch-Sturm Fellowship.
He was an avid Green Bay Packer fan and ultimately a season ticket holder. Over the years he organized many annual bus trips to a preseason game with family, friends, and neighbors, as well as going on football game and fishing trip combinations with his dear friends. When he first became a season ticket holder, he first took his brother Bud, his oldest son Pat, and his oldest grandson Corey to the game. He also enjoyed cheering for the Milwaukee Brewers and Wisconsin Badgers.
Chuck especially loved spending time at his cottage on McCann Lake, which was a life-long dream fulfilled. Many fun times and fond memories were had there with generations of family and friends.
He is survived by his wife, Bernadette; and four children, Patrick (Susan), Michael (Beth), Nancy (Albert) Goettl, and Christine (Michael) Fisher. He is further survived by nine grandchildren, Tricia Prigge, Corey O’Donnell, Colette (David) Staples, Bradley (Amanda) O’Donnell, Lee O’Donnell, Amy O’Donnell (Brian Rozwadowski), Bridget (Justin) Befort, Kimberly (Anthony) Bischel, Rachel Fisher; and 12 great-grandchildren, Reece, Keegan, Devlin, Aurora, Pacey, Ben, Julia, Myra, Gwendolyn, Augustus, Curtis, and Dessirae; as well as many wonderful nieces and nephews. A sister-in-law, Eileen O’Donnell, further survives him.
He was preceded in death by his father, Clayton; mother, Leone; sister, Doris Michaud; brother, Eugene (Bud); son, Timothy in infancy; two great-grandsons, Isaac Staples and Cody Rozwadowski. He was further preceded in death by in-laws, Walter and Mathilda Samens, Robert Michaud, Vernon and Irene Samens, Marian and Kenneth Haugle, Jean Sobotta; and niece, Deborah Cecchini.
Visitation will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday, May 20, at the Horan Funeral Home in Chippewa Falls. There will be a Christian vigil service at 5 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home.
A funeral Mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Monday, May 21, at Notre Dame Catholic Church, Chippewa Falls. The Rev. Jesse Burish will be celebrant of the funeral Mass. Interment will follow at Forest Hill Cemetery, Chippewa Falls.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be designated to Chippewa County Historical Society or Jim Falls Lions Club.
Charles’ family would like to thank St. Joseph’s Hospice, and Lake Hallie Memory Care Center for their kindness, compassion, and support.
Family and friends may express condolences online at www.horanfuneralhome.com.