F. Joseph Mader 1907 – 1983

F. Joseph Mader
1907 – 1983

The first child of Joseph and Angeline Mader, F. Joseph was born December 30, 1907. Every morning when he was a boy, Joe would meet a farmer who delivered milk in his wagon. Joe helped him peddle it. He also helped his dad in the clothing store. Reminiscing, Joe had said, “I more or less grew up there, from a little boy on up I was down there delivering packages and working around”

In ca. 1931, Joseph and Esther Krunkenfeldt were married. Within seven years time the became the parents of five children: Janice, Delores, Angeline, John and Rosemary. When John was 2-3 weeks old he became ill with polio and developed Infantile Paralyses. Viola Winkel remembers that day. “Every Sunday Joe and Esther took my dad out for a ride. On Easter Sunday we were out riding when Esther said the baby was sick and it was polio.”

Only 32 years old, Esther died unexpectedly while in the hospital on March 8, 1944 leaving Joseph with five young children between the ages of twelve and six. This was too much for Joseph to cope with so the children went to the orphanage for a short time and then lived with their grandmother Angeline Mader. When they were older, they moved back home with their father. Viola said:

“Joe had a hard time when his wife died so early. It was rough for Joe and he grew depressed. I knew him as a younger man. Oh, he had a different personality then. His wife and I used to go with to the dances and had such a good time. He loved music.”

Joseph was a musician and for thirty years he directed “Joe Mader’s Dance Band”. He learned all about music by taking private coronet lessons when he was young.

In 1933, two years after his father died, Joseph went to work for his uncle Frank in the Mader Clothing Store selling men’s wear. “In the 30’s a vested suit sold for $14.95”, Joe recalled. After his uncle sold the store in 1951, Joe stayed on through several owners, not retiring until age 76 when the store closed it doors Monday, January 10, 1983. He had been a full time employee for 50 years.

“From now on, I want to take it easy, enjoy life. That’s it-period.” Joe had said. The next morning, January 11th, Joseph died of a heart attack in his home.

  1. Janice Mader was the first child born in 1932. She first married Dave Brieske who died in a drowning accident in 1956. They had the following three children:
    1. Barbara Brieske was born in 1952 and is married to Curt Sanders. He is a wholesale clothing salesman and they have four children:
      • Christopher Sanders
      • Jessica Sanders
      • Dustin Sanders
      • Katie Sanders
    2. Jo Ann Brieske was born in 1954. She is an actress performing with the Edge Water Dinner
      Theater in Minneapolis, Minn.
    3. Kathleen Brieske born in 1956, married Dan Gustafson. Dan is employed with Waste Water Works for the city of Racine. They have four children:
      • Joe Gustafson
      • Bob Gustafson
      • Bill Gustafson
      • Elizabeth Gustafson

      Janice’s second husband is Robert Auer who taught at Aquinas High School in La Crosse before moving to Racine, WI. He is now a counselor at Horlick High School and also owns Peppermint Gymnastics Studio. Janice teaches English at Case High School. They are the parents of five more children:

    4. Patricia Auer was born in 1960. She married Phil Mastos who is a cook in a Racine restaurant. They have two children
      • Melissa Mastos
      • Lindsey Mastos
    5. Aimee Auer born in 1961 and is a gymnastics coach
    6. Theresa Auer was born in 1962 and also is a gymnastics coach.
    7. Thomas Auer born in 1961 is a senior at the University of Iowa.
    8. John Auer was born in 1966 and is a Freshman at Stout in Menomonie, WI
  2. Delores Mader born in 1934, was first married to Robert Virnig who died suddenly in 1964. She then married Ernest Bowenkamp, Jr. They live in Des Moines, Iowa and have one daughter:
    1. Laura Jean born in 1973
  3. Angeline Mader was born in 1936. She married Alton Stelter, who is working for the U.S. Postal Service in Madison. They reside in Orfordville, WI and are the parents of five children:
    1. Steven Stelter born on September 1, 1954, married Cathleen. He is employed by the University of Arizona in Tuscon.
    2. Robin Stelter was born March 12, 1957. She married Tom Lancer. They are dairy farming and are the parents of twins.
      • ________Lancer born in October on 1982
      • ________Lancer
    3. Timothy Stelter was born January 26, 1961 and lives in Denver, Col.
    4. Eric Stelter born August 12, 1966 is employed by the U.S. Postal Service in Madison.
    5. Lynn Stelter was born December 17, 1968 and is a high school senior.
  4. John Mader was the only son born in 1937. As an infant he was stuck with polio. John recently got married and lives in Ankony, IA near Des Moines.
  5. Rosemary Mader was the last child born in 1938. She married John Holt. They were the new parents of a baby boy when Rosemary was killed in a car accident in

    • Brondon Holt born in 1962.