Harlan Lewitzke, 89, of Kronenwetter, died Wednesday, September 12th at Aspirus Wausau Hospital.
Harlan was born in Wausau on September 27, 1928. He attended the Wausau Senior High School and graduated in 1947. He then attended the University of Wisconsin, and subsequently became a registered “Professional Engineer” in the state of Wisconsin.
Harlan married Yvonne Uecker on February 10, 1951. They were close companions for over 61 years until Vonnie’s unexpected death in June of 2012. Harlan was the father of two sons, Alan and Bradley; the grandfather of two grandsons, Justin Lewitzke and Jeremy Lewitzke; and also the great grandfather of Adalynn and Cayden Lewitzke of Justin and Sammantha Lewitzke and great grandfather of Henry Lewitzke, the son of Jeremy and Lindsey Lewitzke.
When the children were growing up and into their teen years the family enjoyed many camping trips into northern Wisconsin and throughout the United States. They also enjoyed flying trips as Harlan became an FAA Licensed Pilot, with single and multiengine land plane, single engine sea plane, glider, and instrument ratings. After the children had grown Harlan and Vonnie took many flying trips through the United States. During the years Harlan and his brother took annual spring fishing trips into Canada, which also became family affairs with Harlan’s sons and grandson. Harlan and Vonnie also enjoyed winter trip to the Southern States to get a break from the winters. After not being involved with working full time at L&S Electric, Harlan enjoyed working at his 48 acres of wooded land and in his cabin at which he frequently invited friends for visits.
Harlan’s work included time at Marathon Electric, Marathon Corporation in Rothschild, and also American Can Co. in Wausau. In 1970 Harlan and Vonnie purchased a small company of about 6 employees from their neighbor, Walter Leverance. This company was known as Leverance Electric, and through various mergers, acquisitions, and a great deal of family effort, became L&S Electric, which now has about 12 locations throughout the U.S. and Canada, and has an excess of 350 employees. This company is still owned by the Lewitzke family. It was a great joy for Harlan to see the company grow and provide satisfying employment for the workers and their families of the company. And finally for him to see a third generation of Lewitzke’s join the company to assure its continuation into the future was a great satisfaction.
Harlan was quite active throughout the years in the local community. He belonged to Wisconsin Valley Supervisors Council, Rotary Club, Taxpayers League, the Wausau mayors Board of Appeals, Wausau Elks Club, Central Wisconsin Professional Engineers, Golden Kiwanis, a director at River Valley Bank, church council member at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, and in 1987 Harlan was selected as Small Business Person of the Year by the Wausau Chamber of Commerce.
Survivors include: two sons Alan and Bradley (Sandy) Lewitzke, two grandsons Justin (Sammantha) Lewitzke and Jeremy (Lindsey) Lewitzke, one great granddaughter Adalynn and great grandson Caden Lewitzke and great grandson Henry Lewitzke; and one brother Wally (Carmel) Lewitzke.
He was preceded in death by his parents Paul and Margaret (Luedtke) Lewitzke, and his wife Yvonne (Uecker) Lewitzke.
Funeral services will be held at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 1901 Kowalski Rd, Kronenwetter, on Tuesday, September 18th at 11:00 a.m. Rev. John Czarnota will officiate. Visitation will be held at Brainard Funeral Home – Everest Chapel, 5712 Memorial Court, Weston on Monday, September 17th from 4:00 pm until 7:00 pm and again on Tuesday, September 18th from 9:00 am until the time of services at the church.
In lieu of flowers of flowers, Harlan would appreciate funds directed towards Bethlehem Lutheran Church or the Salvation Army.