Obituary Listings

James A. Kampschroer

November 5, 1941 November 1, 2018
James A. Kampschroer
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Obituary for James A. Kampschroer

JAMES ALAN KAMPSCHROER (Jim)
1941-2018

Jim was a caring, gentle soul and the embodiment of a good man. He was strong and successful in many ways, but silent about his accomplishments. Jim was always thoughtful of the feelings of others and always so helpful and giving of his talents. His example helped to form the lives of many.


BIOGRAPHY / OBITUARY

Jim passed away peacefully in his sleep November 1, 2018, age 76. He was preceded in death by his parents Henry and Joyce. Dear brother of Thomas (Rose), Joe (Lori), and Susan (Ted) Lecher. Jim is further survived by many nieces, nephews, other family and friends.

JIM'S FIRST 18 YEARS

Jim grew up on the far west side of Brookfield in the 1950’s. Dad and mom bought a wooded acre parcel there “way out in the country” and built a new house on it in the late 1940s. A lot of new homes were going up in the neighborhood at that time. As a young man, Jim worked with dad to build our garage. Dad saw right away that Jim learned construction techniques quickly and that he was very talented. Jim was a worker then and all through his life. Dad and mom and all of us always admired that about him. He made sure that all of the work was done around the house. Work first, play later.

Jim, Tom and their neighborhood and school friends, Russ, Carter, Bob, Pat and many more had all of the fun that living in the country in the far west side of Milwaukee afforded. Things like fishing in the Fox River, hunting arrowheads and cattails in the vast fields, building forts in the “big woods” at the end of our road, riding their 3-speed bikes, walking along the railroad tracks, Boy Scouts, baseball and football in school and village leagues filled each day. They were limited only by their imagination. There was also the unique benefit of the Milwaukee Braves playing in the World Series a couple of times when they were in high school. One of the Braves’ Hall of Fame stars lived a block to the north and was just another parent in the neighborhood. Pretty cool. Things were different then.

Cars were a big part of Jim’s young life, as they were for Tom and all their friends’ lives after they got their driver’s licenses later in high school. They often worked on their cars in dad and mom’s driveway. Jim would go to races at Slinger and State Fair Park when he got the chance and on Memorial Day he would always listen to the Indy 500 on the radio. Jim’s progression of cars through the 1950’s and 1960’s included: a 1941 Dodge (with flames on the fenders), a 1956 customized Ford, a 1961 Triumph TR3 (really fast), an International Harvester Scout 4-wheel drive and a 1964 Chevelle Malibu. Cruising to the hamburger and ice cream stands and comparing cars was a part of life in the 1950s.

Jim and Tom often let their 10- and 14-year younger brother and sister, Joe and Susie, be part of their activities. This formed a lot of the things Joe and Susie now consider important as they live their lives.

JIM’S SKILL IN DESIGNING AND BUILDING HOMES

After graduating from Brookfield High School in 1960, Jim enrolled in a carpentry apprenticeship school to further his construction interests and considerable talent. Jim purchased land in northern Wisconsin one year out of high school. Within two years, he designed and built a cabin on Witches Lake in Vilas County. This cabin became a favorite gathering place for Jim, his brother Tom and their friends and later became the vacation residence for the Kampschroer family until 1974. It provided many long-lasting family memories.

After selling the cabin to dad and mom in the mid-1960s, Jim and Tom bought a home together on Butternut Island on Lake Sinnissippi in Hustisford, WI. They called the house Sibventure. Their new home provided a closer-to-home fun weekend destination for friends and family with all types of water and snow sports.

A few years later, after the sale of Sibventure, Jim designed and built a dynamic diamond-cathedral home also on Butternut Island. This home was the first real example of Jim’s inspiring talent in architecture and construction with amazing expanses, a hanging fireplace, exotic wood finishes, a spiral staircase and very few 90-degree angles. It was the showpiece home on the island. It also provided another wonderful friends and family destination.

Following the sale of his second Butternut Island home, Jim bought a beautiful parcel of rolling, glaciated land in Wales, WI in the early 1970’s. There, on the top of a Kettle Moraine esker, he researched, designed and built his most ambitious and imaginative home. It was a Frank Lloyd Wright-style hexagon-shaped building with a 270-degree unobstructed birds-eye view from every one of its many angles. Jim added a 1700 square foot deck with a built-in swimming pool and a gazebo perched in the treetops.

It’s important to know that the three homes that Jim designed, he built himself, while working two jobs—one as the lead carpenter on a freelance remodeling crew each morning-- and the second at Allen Bradley each afternoon and evening—for 37 years.

In his spare time, Jim also continually renovated our mom and dad’s Brookfield home and was there every time any of us needed help with our own home projects.

OUR VACATIONS TOGETHER

Our family was able to enjoy Jim’s company traveling to many places over the years, including:
Northern Wisconsin
Lake Geneva-- Jim loved the boat tour and the amazing stories about the lake’s mansions
Mackinaw Island
Chicago—for the river tour and the stories of the amazing city architecture
Brewers’ baseball and Wisconsin football games
Art fairs—especially with mom
Biking on the Glacial Drumlin trail
Washington DC on a private rail car
San Francisco, the wine country and the 17-Mile Drive
Branson, Missouri
Many trips to the Fireside Theatre with mom
Dinners and brunches at many area restaurants
Day tours to historic, interesting southeastern Wisconsin places with his Regency friends
Tom and Rose’s home in Wausau, Ted and Susie’s home in Hubertus, Joe and Lori’s home in Whitefish Bay and the homes of his nieces and nephews for birthdays and holidays

JIM’S CHARITY AND LOVE OF ART

Jim loved going to art fairs with mom and others and his homes contained many pieces of sculpture and artifacts that he found at those fairs- and several he created himself.

Late in his life, while living at the Regency in New Berlin, WI, Jim donated a large metal sculpture that remains on exhibition in the Regency’s inner courtyard just outside the chapel. It is marked with a plaque as being a gift from him. It is lighted at night and maintained for all future residents to enjoy for years in Jim’s memory.

In lieu of flowers, contributions to the family for a memorial to Jim are appreciated. Please send your contribution to:

Kampschroer Memorial
155339 Cliffway Drive
Wausau, WI 54403


Previous Events

Memorial Gathering

Wednesday

7

Nov

10:00 AM 11/7/2018 10:00:00 AM - 11:15 AM 11/7/2018 11:15:00 AM
St. Dominic Catholic Church

18255 W. Capitol Drive
Brookfield, WI 53045

St. Dominic Catholic Church
18255 W. Capitol Drive Brookfield 53045 WI
United States

Funeral Mass

Wednesday

7

Nov

11:30 AM 11/7/2018 11:30:00 AM
St. Dominic Catholic Church

18255 W. Capitol Drive
Brookfield, WI 53045

St. Dominic Catholic Church
18255 W. Capitol Drive Brookfield 53045 WI
United States

Cemetery Details

Location

Wisconsin Memorial Park Final Resting Place

13235 W. Capitol Drive
Brookfield, WI 53005

13235 W. Capitol Drive Brookfield 53005 WI
United States
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