Donald Roger Kowalewski, of Trempealeau, Wis., and formerly of Winona, Minn., left this earth on Saturday, September 8, 2012, to join his family members that went before him, with his wife, sons, and grandsons at his side. Don had multiple health issues, but the last diagnosis of cancer is what took his life.
Don was born to Charlotte Gallagher Kowalewski, on May 20, 1937, in St. Paul, Minn. He lived in Minnesota City, Minn., most of his young life. After graduating from Winona Senior High School, he enlisted in the Air Force during the Korean conflict, where he was stationed on Johnston Island. After he left the service, he was employed at Armour Meat Company.
Don was active in fastpitch softball, playing for both county and city leagues. In addition he bowled in the Eagle’s League. He enjoyed participating and watching all sports.
On November 22, 1958, Don was united in marriage to Judy Kobus, at St. Stanislaus Kostka Church. From that marriage, they had four children.
Don attended Winona State College for two years. His employment was combined of Lab Tech’s for Bay State Milling Company and Watkin’s Mineral Plant. In addition he worked construction, and for the last 15 years, drove semi over the road for Ashley Furniture, until his retirement in 2000. After retirement, he went back to work for Mathy’s Construction and County.
He enjoyed playing cards, gin rummy, poker and schoscoff, at family gatherings and after VFW meetings with his fellow comrades, where he was a life member of the Arnold/Towner Little Bear Post #1915, in Trempealeau, Wis.
Don was proud of his Irish heritage, family and grandchildren. He enjoyed going to their ballgames from “T” ball to high school games, as well as watching his granddaughter play softball. Fishing was a favorite pastime for Don; even if they weren’t biting, he enjoyed being out on the river and going on fishing trips to Northern Minnesota with his sister and brother-in-law.
Don is survived by his wife of 53 years, Judy Kowalewski, Trempealeau, Wis; sons, Steve Kowalewski, Galesville, Wis., Rick Kowalewski, Freeberg, Minn., and Scott Kowalewski, St. Paul, Minn; daughter, Wendy (John) Doughty, Falmouth, Maine, grandchildren, Kalvin and Kyle (Rick’s sons), Cahtayah (Steve’s daughter), and Charlotte (Wendy’s daughter); sisters, Charlene (Arnie) Egge, Peterson, Minn., Patty (Ron) Struckmeyer, Nashville, Ill, and Kathy Dickhut, Austin, Minn.; an aunt, nieces, nephews and cousins; as well as other relatives and friends. He was preceded in death by his mother, Charlotte; stepfather, Val; and brother, Dennis.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 12 noon, on Wednesday, September 12, 2012, at the Basilica of St. Stanislaus Kostka. Monsignor Roy E. Literski will officiate. Following the Mass, the VFW Post 1915, of Trempealeau, Wis., will conduct full military honors outside the Basilica. Donald will be laid to rest in Fort Snelling National Cemetery, Minneapolis, Minn. Visitation will be held at the Basilica of St. Stanislaus Kostka, on Wednesday, September 12, 2012, from 11 a.m. until the time of the Mass.
Honorary pallbearers will be his sons, grandsons and granddaughter.
The family wishes to express their heartfelt thank you to the Hospice nurses of Gundersen Lutheran, Barb, Lori and Sandy, for their unending care and also to Dr. Eric Gundersen and Dr. Brian Mulrennan.
Online condolences or memories may be left for Donald’s family. www.watkowski-mulyck.com
Entrusted to our care – Watkowski-Mulyck Funeral Home.