Edward W. McFarland
Edward W. McFarland, 89 of Watertown, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, April 12, 2017, at home surrounded by his family.
Ed was born August 29, 1927, at home on the farm, the son of Ray & Loretta (Coughlin) McFarland. He was born, raised, lived and died on his family farm — a family treasure that has been in the McFarland name since
1852. Ed’s father, brothers and their families worked together on the McFarland Dairy where they not only milked cows, but also bottled and delivered the milk to the Watertown area. In 1973, Ed and Donna took over the farm with their 4 children; Peter, Ann, Kathleen, and Jim. They appreciated rising early, and working side-by-side together. Peter and Cindy took over the farm operation in 1985, the 5th generation. McFarlandale Dairy is now in its 6th generation, Robb and Christine Bender, the daughter and son-in-law of
Peter and Cindy— Ed was very proud to see the family legacy continue.
His parents were the founders of the Watertown Badgers 4-H Club of which Ed was a charter member; and besides having a constant presence over the years showing cattle at the local county fair, he also then for ten years showed cattle at the Wisconsin State Fair. In 1948, he was selected as the Dairy Production Winner in WI, and then went on to the National 4-H Congress in Chicago, IL. As a National Winner, he was awarded a two year scholarship to the University of Wisconsin, Madison. At the Centennial Celebration at the State Fair, he was chosen to represent the 21 year old 4-H graduates in response to Chief Justice Rosenberry’s address,
something for which he was very proud and honored. Ed attended UW Farm-Short Course, and later served on the Alumni Board. He was the chairman of the Little International Dairy Show while at the
University. He served in the Korean War as a platoon sergeant withCompany A 453 Construction Engineers from 1950-1952.
On February 8th, 1958, he married Donna Murray, a day which he referred to as, “The happiest day of his life!” They continued farming, and in 1959 they were recognized as the local and state winners of the Outstanding Young Farmers Program. Besides the responsibilities of the family business, Ed served on the Board of Directors at M&I Bank for 20 years. Also, he was on the board of the Dodge County Forage Council.
He was a lifelong dedicated member of St. Bernard’s Catholic Church. Ed’s faith in God, family, and farming were constant driving forces in his life— dairy farming was genuinely his life’s passion. He was an honest, optimistic man who worked hard every day of his life. He could do anything, fix anything, and even built his own home. His motto was, “The impossible always takes a little longer.” He was a great teacher who expected the best out of his family and led by example. Ed was always the one in charge; but more importantly, he was able to inspire the very best that a person could give. He was a humble innovator and a true man of character with a smile that will be dearly missed.
Ed is survived by: his Wife Donna, of 59 years; Children Peter (Cindy) of Watertown, Kathleen McFarland of Lake Geneva, Jim (Patti) of Sullivan, son-in-law Jerry Beranek of Watertown; Grandchildren Brian (Emily), Kevin (Angela), Mark (Regina), Ben, Jackie, Christine (Robb), Kyle (Danielle), and Justin; Great-Grandchildren Jackson, Orin, Callan; Brother George (Mary) of Watertown. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews,
cousins, other relatives, as well as many, many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, daughter Ann Marie Beranek (2011), sister Gertrude (Joseph) Stangler, and his brother Robert (Ruth).
Memorials may be made in Ed’s honor to the Watertown Catholic Youth Center. The family would like to thank all the staff at Rainbow Hospice Care, especially Dana, who’s loving professional care was greatly appreciated by both Ed and his family.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Tuesday, April 18th, 2017 at 11:00 AM at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church of Watertown with Fr. Patrick Wendler presiding. Visitation will be on Monday, April 17th from 5:00
PM – 8:00PM with a rosary service starting at 7:30PM at Pederson-Nowatk Funeral Home. Visitation will also be held on Tuesday, April 18th, from 10:00AM until the time of service at the church. Burial will follow the Funeral Mass at St. Bernard’s Catholic Cemetery.
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