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Jack D. KassonOctober 13, 1931 ~ July 29, 2017 (age 85)
Jack D. Kasson, age 85, passed away on July 29, 2017 after a long illness. Jack was born and raised on Modoc Street in Clintonville, and lived in Clintonville for his entire life with the exception of college and a tour in the U.S. Marine Corps in the 1950s. If one had to describe Jack with a single word, I think Jack would agree with the term “sportsman”. Jack loved the outdoors; hunting and fishing, as well as being a good steward of the land, forest and wildlife. He thoroughly enjoyed frequent visits to his cabin in the woods whether it be for hunting season, planting trees, tending the bird feeders or just soaking in the peace of the forest. Perhaps Jack’s biggest claim to fame was his success as an athlete and enjoyment of sports of many varieties.
Jack was a four-year varsity letter winner and a multi-sport standout athlete for Clintonville High School; earning all conference recognition in basketball and all state recognition in football. The September 20, 2016 edition of the Clintonville Chronicle included a sports flashback article heralding Jack’s stellar performance as offensive and defensive end in the 1951 North – South High School All Star game, helping the North to a lop-sided 26-7 victory over the South. Future Heisman Trophy winner, running back for the South team, Alan Ameche, was held to only 9 rushing yards in the first half and 13 yards for the entire game. Jack went on to accept a football scholarship to play for the University of Kentucky in addition to competing for UK on the track team (shot put and discuss). Jack completed his football career with a US Marine Corps west coast service team in 1957; playing against the likes of Jack Kemp. In 2003, Jack traveled back to Lexington, KY to attend the Kentucky Football Alumni “Bears Boys” Reunion. The “Bears Boys” are the Wildcats who played for Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant from 1946-1953. Outland Trophy winner Bob Gain, All American quarterback Babe Parilli and NFL Legend George Blanda were among the Bears Boys group gathered for the reunion. Jack kept in contact with his old UK teammates throughout his adult life. And this summary of Jack’s sports career would not be complete without mention of his beloved, over 30 softball team, “The Untouchables”. Many good times and shared camaraderie with close friends; almost all of whom have already passed.
Jack was employed by Fore Way Express for most of his very successful career; consistently recognized as the number one salesman in both dollars and tons of freight moved for the regional carrier.
Jack is survived by his wife of 60 years, Patsy Kasson, Clintonville, WI; four children Lt. Col. (ret) Robert (Jon Ann) Kasson, Iola, WI; Kathy (Kevin) Davis, Azle, TX; Kay Nussbaum, Clintonville, WI; and Timothy (Melissa) Kasson, Shiocton, WI; 14 grandchildren; 9 great-grandchildren; brother Dr. Peter (Joyce) Kasson; sister Susan Gruthoff; sister-in-law Marilyn (Sweetsie) Kasson; and many cousins, nieces and nephews. Jack was preceded in death by his parents Lester & Millie Kasson, brother Col. (ret) Darrell Kasson, and great grandson Isaac Nussbaum.
Funeral services will be held Friday, August 4, 2017 at 6 PM at the Eberhardt-Stevenson Funeral Home & Crematory, Clintonville with Bishop Brett Hoffman officiating. Military honors will be conducted outside of the funeral home following the service by members of the American Legion Post #63, VFW Post #664, and American Legion Auxiliary Unit #63 of Clintonville. Friends may call at the funeral home on Friday from 3 PM until the time of the service. Jack’s family would like to extend their sincerest thanks to Kristy and the staff at Thedacare at Home Hospice for their compassion and excellent care. An online guestbook for Jack can be found at www.eberhardtstevenson.com