Gordon V Cronin, Waterloo / Verona – Gordon V Cronin age 89, passed away peacefully at Willow Pointe Memory Care, on Jan 15, 2014 surrounded by his loving family.
Gordon was born in Janesville, WI on Nov. 28, 1924, the son of John J. and Mamie (Beilharz) Cronin. He was raised in Hubbleton, and Janesville, WI attending grade school in both places. He graduated from Waterloo High School in 1942, and excelled in football, basketball and baseball. After high school, he was in the U. S. Army and trained at Fort Chaffee in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Gordon was united in marriage to Margo Setz on April 26, 1947, at the United Methodist Church in Waterloo, WI.
They honeymooned in Fort Atkinson, Beloit, Davenport, IA & the Twin Cities. He then worked at his father-in-laws Insurance Agency, Service Insurance until 1949. On December 7, 1947, Gordon and Margo took the plunge and opened Cronin Shoe Store in Waterloo and successfully ran the business until 1977. At that time he and Margo purchased the Service Insurance Agency and operated it until their retirement in 1989. Gordon was extremely active in the community and his weekly routine would tire most of us out just reading about it.
He was active on the Waterloo Fire Department from 1951 until 1984. He helped start Waterloo’s first EMT unit and donated countless hours of service at Waterloo’s Firemen’s Park. He was involved with the following local organizations, Waterloo Lions Club, Waterloo Chamber of Commerce, &United Methodist Church Board. Gordon was never one to just be a member of something, and he held officer roles in all of the organizations listed including the Fire Department, and State offices with the Lions Club.
He was the City Treasurer of Waterloo and spent many a Christmas Holiday stuffing tax bills into envelopes. He was Sect. / Treasurer of Wednesday Businessmen’s Bowling and did all the statistics for them by hand in the day. If that isn’t enough, Gordie drove school bus for many years and was very active in Little League and youth baseball, coaching Little League, Teener, and Legion programs.
He also had a “hobby farm” of many acres. He was famous for his great sweet corn, vegetables, and gorgeous gladiolus he cared for with pride. His real passion in farming was his Baby Rice white Popcorn. He grew acres of it and shelled, sifted, sorted and bagged it by hand. His popcorn was shipped all over the United States and the World.
Gordon loved the outdoors and loved hunting with his bird dogs over the years. He also was member of Ducks Unlimited, Pheasants Forever and the Dane County Conservation League. In 1987, Gordon and Margo spearheaded the restoration of Waterloo’s 1911 C. W. Parker Carousel. Their fundraising efforts restored the beauty back to this local treasure. Again, Gordon spent hours of time working and restoring the gem of Firemen’s Park. He joined the National Carousel Association and attended many conferences and conventions and even hosted one.
Gordon served as a N.C.A. Board of Director for four years. He was especially proud of his accomplishment of getting the carousel registered by the State of Wisconsin Historical Society and the Nation Register. Gordon was named Senior Citizen of the year in Waterloo in 1993. Gordon & Margo were named 2005, City of Waterloo, Volunteers of the year. Gordon and Margo recently received a proclamation from the Waterloo City Council recognizing them for outstanding civic contributions over the years.
He is survived by Margo, wife of 66 years, Verona; Daughter Jane (Tim) Haldiman Waterloo; Son Don (Connie) Madison. Grandchildren, Trent (Chrissy) Haldiman, Waterloo; Olivia, Graham & Arthur Cronin, Madison. Great Grand Daughter, Gia Haldiman.
He was preceded in death by his parents, John & Mamie, brothers, George, Fred and John; Sisters, Genevieve Kasemark Weber, Felecia Hill, and Bernice Fisher Miller. Memorials may be made to the Friends of the Carousel group.
Visitation will be at the Waterloo United Methodist Church, 348 W. Madison St., Waterloo, WI from 9:00 a.m. until 11:00 on Monday, January 20, 2014. A Service will follow at 11:00 a.m. with Rev. Jan Beutin presiding. Burial with military rites will be held in Oak Hill Cemetery.
Pederson-Nowatka Funeral Home Waterloo is caring for the family. On-line condolences may be made at www.pn-fh.com
The family would like to thank the wonderful staff at Willow Pointe Memory Care and Agrace Hospice Care. Your thoughtfulness will never be forgotten.
You touched so many lives in a positive way. You will forever be a role model to so many. You are loved and missed so much. Thank You.