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August 29, 1952 - July 20, 2017

Mark J. “Red” Wermer, 64, of Sparta passed away on July 20, 2017 at Mizen Head Ireland during his dream vacation with his sister Lynn Suter.

He was born in Chicago, IL to H. James and Joan (Joly) Wermer on August 29, 1952. He lived there until he was 9 when the family moved to Joliet, IL. He graduated from Joliet Catholic High in 1970 and moved to Winona, MN where he went to St. Mary’s College and met his wife Ann Schiltz. They were united in marriage on Feb 14, 1976 at St. Peter’s Church in Caledonia, MN. From this union, they were blessed with two children, Zachary and Elizabeth.

Red loved children. While attending college, he volunteered at the Head Start Program in Winona as well as worked for the Winona YMCA both in-house and as a youth camp counselor. He spent many years as a volunteer soccer coach for the Sparta Rec Dept. and also coached the Sparta High School soccer team. He was also a leader for a St. Patrick’s Parish Boy Scout troop. He spent 7 years working with at-risk youth at Monroe County Shelter Care as well as with youth in Vernon County through the Coulee CAP agency. He did many adventure based activities with them such as camping, caving, rock climbing, ropes courses, and many other adventure based activities. He also spent 9 years working for the La Crosse County Juvenile Detention Facility. His later years now had been devoted to loving and being a mentor to his granddaughters who adored him.

Red also loved to take trips to the Canadian Rockies both with his family and the family of his best friend Jerry Kjer, whom he met his first year at college.

Red is survived by his wife Ann of Sparta; his son Zac (Cheryl) Wermer of Newton, MA and daughter Elizabeth Tavidian of West Allis WI; granddaughters Alexandria Tavidian, and Eleanorah, Seraphina, and Annaliese Wermer; his mother Joan Wermer of Green Valley, AZ; his siblings Lynn Suter of Wheaton, IL, Joy Alexander of Chicago, IL, Steve Wermer of Joliet, IL, and Greg (Judy) Wermer of Joliet, IL; brothers-in law Chuck Schiltz of Oshkosh, WI, and John Schiltz of Caledonia, MN; nieces and nephews Michael (Laurie) Suter of San Francisco, CA, Britney Wermer of Coal City, IL , Andrew Wermer of Joliet IL, Samuel Alexander of Chicago, IL, Craig Schiltz of San Francisco, CA, and Jessica Schiltz of Sun Prairie, WI; great-nephew Sebastian Schiltz-Babaand great-niece Hope Wermer; other special family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his father H. James Wermer; twin brothers Matthew and Martin; grandparents Harry and Bertha Wermerskirchen of Chicago, IL and Francis G. and Vera Joly of Fort Lauderdale, FL.

A Funeral service will be held at 11 amSaturday, July 29th, at McCormick Funeral Home, 205 East Main Street, Caledonia, MN. Visitation will be Saturday  morning from 9 am until the time of the service at the funeral home. A luncheon will follow at Holy Family Hall, Caledonia.

In lieu of flowers, memorials donations can be made in his name to The Ridge Community Church, 4500 S. 108th St., Greenfield, WI 53228.

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