Roger A. Hedrington, 79, of 1216 Superior St. in Chippewa Falls, died Thursday, March 7, 2013 at Mayo Health System in Eau Claire, from complications of pancreatic cancer, surrounded by his loving family.
He was born June 15, 1933 in Chippewa Falls to John ‘Jack’ and Ella (Buetow) Hedrington.
He graduated from Chippewa Falls Senior High School in 1951, attended UW-Eau Claire and played football for a year, and then worked various jobs until he was drafted into the US Army in May of 1953. He spent 14 months in Germany and was discharged in May of 1955. Roger returned to UW-Eau Claire, played football from 1956-1958, was a member of the 1956 championship team and served as co-captain in 1958. He was known as the ‘Iron Man’ and played both offense and defense. His most memorable moment was kicking a field goal in a snowstorm to win the game 17-14 against UW-Superior for their Homecoming with no time left on the clock. He received his BS Degree in Social Studies and Physical Education from UW-Eau Claire in 1960 and got his MS Degree in Physical Education from UW-LaCrosse in 1969.
Roger married Elizabeth “Betty” Halama on August 6, 1966 at S.S. Peter and Paul Church in Independence, Wis. He spent 32 years as a teacher and coach at Thorp High School, Wisconsin Rapids Assumption High School, Cornell High School and Chippewa Falls Senior High School, retiring in 1991. In retirement, he became an assistant football coach for UW-Eau Claire for a year and then was an assistant football coach for four years at Cadott. He also was a substitute teacher at Bloomer, Cadott and McDonell High Schools.
Roger was an active member of St. Charles Borromeo Church and often served as a Reader at Mass. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus Goldsmith Council #974. He was inducted into the Chi-Hi Athletic Hall of Fame in 2003 and the UW-Eau Claire Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009. He participated in the American Heart Association Heart Walk for 15 years collecting over $5,000.00 in donations each year. He loved to travel and attend every sporting event in the area.
Roger is survived by: his wife, Betty of 46 years; two daughters, Heidi (Randy) Culbertson of Eau Claire and Helen (Jason) Dohm of Maple Grove, Minn.; and four grandchildren, Alaina and Zachary Culbertson and Kaden and Kaylea Dohm. He is further survived by: a sister, Joanne (Elmer) Bjork of Chippewa Falls; a sister-in-law, Rose Marie Hedrington of Eau Claire; and several nieces, nephews and special friends. He is further survived by his mother-in-law, Verna D. Halama of Whitehall.
He was preceded in death by: his parents; brothers Royce, Ellsworth ‘Bud’, Jerome ‘Jerry’ (Laures), Donald ‘Tiny’ (Ellen), Dayton, ‘Dyke’ (Gertrude); a sister LuElla ‘Sis’ (William) McGillis; and father-in-law Aloysie Halama.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, March 11 at St. Charles Borromeo Church, 810 Pearl Street, Chippewa Falls. The Very Rev. Ed Shuttleworth will be celebrant of the funeral Mass. Interment will be in Hope Cemetery in Chippewa Falls. Military rites will be conducted by the Chippewa Falls Patriotic Council.
Visitation will also be at St. Charles Borromeo Church on Sunday, March 10, from 3 to 8 p.m. and on Monday from 10 a.m. until the time of services. The Knights of Columbus will recite the rosary at 3 p.m. and there will be a Christian Vigil Service at 7 p.m.
Memorials may be designated to St. Charles Borromeo Church Trust Fund, the American Heart Association or the UW-Eau Claire Football Program.
Horan Funeral Home in Chippewa Falls is in charge of arrangements.
Family and friends may express condolences online at www.horanfuneralhome.com.