Obit: Esser, Raymond F. #2 (1916 – 2009)
Surnames: Esser, Gilles, Nehls, Fitzmaurice, Dioka
----Source: Banner Journal (Black River Falls, Jackson Co., WI.) March 4, 2009
Esser, Raymond F. “Ray” (29 May 1916 – 1 March 2009) With Flag
Raymond F. “Ray” Esser, 92, of Alma Center, died Sunday, March 1, 2009, at Black River Memorial Hospital, Black River Falls.
He was born May 29, 1916, in Garden Valley Township, Jackson County, to parents John and Helen (Gilles) Esser. He graduated from high school in Alma Center in 1933.
Ray worked as a bartender for his uncle in California and later in La Crosse. He entered military service in 1942, serving in the U. S. Army in Africa. He was honorably discharged in November of 1945.
In 1946 he entered into partnership with his brother, Robert, in the Esser Bar in Alma Center, acquiring full ownership in 1956.
He married Herli Nehls April 27, 1984 in Alma Center. He was a lifetime member of the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church and the Alma Center VFW. He also belonged to the Jackson County Tavern League.
Ray will be remembered for his great conversational skills and wonderful sense of humor. He had an extraordinary ability to remember names and faces and always took a genuine interest in people he encountered throughout his life. He will also be remembered for the great enjoyment he got from purchasing new automobiles. He also enjoyed completing daily crossword puzzles.
Ray is survived by three brothers, Harold Esser of Walla Walla, WA, Claire (Laura) Esser of Alma Center and James (Marian) Esser of Spooner; one sister, Ruth Fitzmaurice of Augusta; and many nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Herli, Feb. 11, 2007; brothers Giles, Leo and Robert Esser; sisters-in-law Vivian and Jean Esser; brother-in-law Bob Fitzmaurice; and by his infant sister, Louise.
Funeral services for Raymond F. Esser will be held at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, March 5, 2009, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Alma Center, with Reverend Jude Dioka officiating. Burial will take place in Saint Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, Alma Center, with Military Rites by the Alma Center VFW Post 8494.
Friends may call at the Jensen-Modjeski Funeral Home, Hixton Wednesday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. with a Parish Rosary at 6:45 p.m. and may also call at the church Thursday one hour prior to services.
Casketbearers will be Dan Esser, Donald Esser, George Esser, John Esser, Mike Esser and Dennis Fitzmaurice.
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