Nazario Ramirez Cruz, MD, our beloved husband, father and grandfather passed away peacefully at his home in Waunakee on Fri. July 11, 2014. Those who knew him will remember him as a generous, compassionate, and fun loving storyteller who overcame his frequent health setbacks to lead a long and happy life. Nazario was born on July 28, 1931 in Baliuag, Bulacan, Philippines. He was the youngest of 6 born to Macaria and Fidel Cruz. He shared many adventure stories of his birth country where he ran through rice paddies, swam in the ocean, helped his sister in her store in Central Market and assisted the American soldiers during WWII. He attended medical school at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila where he was told by one of the priests that he should go to Chicago to see the "beautiful mountains." He didn't find the mountains, but while interning at South Chicago Hospital he found his loving wife, Marlaine Straub, to whom he was married for 54 wonderful years. Nazario proudly became a U. S. citizen on August 12, 1961.
They moved from Chicago to Kenosha, Wisconsin, where they raised four children, and enjoyed many happy years in their house by Lake Michigan. Nazario opened his medical practice downtown, and tended to many families who sometimes paid him in services, great food, and wine. He spoke fondly of his Elks Club Bowling team and his colleagues at the hospitals. He loved traveling with his family to show them his homeland as well as many fun filled trips to Disney World.
Nazario and Marlaine followed their children to Madison and settled in Waunakee for the last 28 years. Nazario loved spending time with his grandchildren, going to their sporting and music events, movies and restaurants. In his later years, he enjoyed visiting the Saint Mary's Day Center where he had many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Ricardo, and sisters Mercedes, Angelita, and Cornelia with his sister Maxima surviving him.
Surviving him are his loving wife Marlaine, and his four children and their families: his daughter Mercedes Ranum, her husband Bill, and their children Tylor, Carly, Elly, and Jordan; his daughter Marcelline Peterson, her husband Dave, and their children Aria, Ella, and Willa; his son Joseph, his wife Laura, and their children Joey, Julianna, and Cooper; his son Ricardo.
Funeral services will be held on Tues. July 15, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. at St John's Catholic Church, 209 South St Waunakee. Msgr. James Gunn will officiate. Friends may call at the church on Tues. from 9:30 a.m. until the time of services. Burial will take place in the church cemetery.
The family wishes to thank Dr. Al Musa, MD, Bridget Jensen, RN, Saint John Church, Saint Mary Adult Day Center and nurse, Jody, caregiver Melissa, and special caregiver and companion, Brittny Campbell.
In lieu of flowers, Nazario wanted donations to be made to the family to help fund a nursing scholarship for his caregiver Brittny.
Paalam Celso, we will miss you.