William F. Becker

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William Francis Becker, 80, of McGregor, passed away Saturday, June 8, 2024, at Great River Care Center in McGregor.


William was born the youngest child to Johanna Kathryn (Hartke) and Irvin Louis Becker on Jan. 8, 1944, at the McGregor Community Hospital in McGregor.


William was baptized on April 9, 1944 at the United Methodist Church in Giard.


William started school by attending a one-room country school house near Giard, where he stayed through the sixth grade. At that time, there were too many students in one room for one teacher, so the seventh and eighth grade students attended school in Marquette, which had become part of Mar-Mac by then.


At 14 years of age, he was confirmed in 1958 at the United Methodist Church in Giard.


He attended high school in McGregor. While in high school, William enjoyed spending time outside by squirrel hunting, fishing with Albert and Lee Erickson and pheasant hunting in Fayette County for two years with a group that included his dad and brother Richard.


William graduated from Mar-Mac Community High School with the class of 1962. After graduating, William farmed with his parents, milking Guernsey and Holstein cows, raising hogs and doing fieldwork planting corn, alfalfa, hay and oats. His favorite season was spring because he could plant seeds and watch them grow. He eventually purchased the farm from his parents.


William was a life-long member of the Giard United Methodist Church where he ushered and was on various committees.


Family was important and meant a lot to William. After retiring, William and his sister Kathryn went on several trips together with destinations of New York to visit his niece Sue and her family, as well as Alabama to visit relatives. They also traveled to South Dakota to the Black Hills to enjoy the beautiful scenery. He helped his sister Kathryn tremendously, which allowed her to stay at home longer. He was a fan of the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Yankees.


Survivors include his favorite sister Kathryn of Marquette/McGregor and his oldest brother Richard and his wife Beverly of Giard.


Survivors in Kathryn’s family include niece Carol Lundt and her husband Kevin of Waukon; niece Susan Lawler and her husband Michael of Pittsford, N.Y.; great-nephews Joshua Smith of Nashua and his family, Kordell Smith of Waukon and his family, Nathan and Sam Lawler of Pittsford, N.Y., as well as Kevin’s son Cody Lundt of Decorah.


Survivors in Richard’s family include Beverly’s children Greg Rickels of McGregor and his family; Todd Rickels of Kansas City, K.S., and his family; and Robin Casey of Helenville, Wis., and her family.


He is further survived by cousins and their families as well as numerous neighbors and friends from church.


Preceding William in death were his parents, brother Paul, brother-in-law Dean Starkey and Beverly’s daughter Rachel Rickels.


The family would like to thank the drivers who took William to appointments, St. Croix Hospice, Great River Care Center staff and the many good friends who visited him.


An interesting note is that he never filled out a job application, commuted to work or punched a time clock...well done!


A graveside service was held on June 13 at Pleasant Grove Cemetery in McGregor, with Pastor Linda Hauschild and Pastor Sheldon Stotmeister as the officiants.


Leonard-Grau Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Monona is assisting the family with services.

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