Jeffrey A. “Jeff” Merkes

Jeffrey A. “Jeff” Merkes

After a long and courageous battle with heart disease, Jeffrey A. “Jeff” Merkes went to be with his Lord and Savior on Friday, Sept. 20, 2019.

He was born on Feb. 5, 1968, in Chicago, Ill., the son of Jerome and Betty (Look) Merkes. He graduated from Middleton High School in 1986. Jeff and Lori (Klapper) were united in marriage on May 5, 2001.

Jeff owned and operated Progress Auto Repair in Madison. He took pride in his work and was very personable; as a result, many customers became his friends. He was a board member at Calvary Gospel Church. He enjoyed helping out with grilling at the annual church picnics, led a men’s group that he started, and was part of the security team on Sunday. He also enjoyed sharing his faith as a mentor as well as being a godly role model and father to his three boys.

The outdoors, archery, ATVing and off-roading were some of Jeff’s passions. His sons loved wrestling with their dad and going to monster truck and car shows together. Jeff loved tinkering under the hood of any car.

Jeff is survived by his wife, Lori; sons, Cody (Alma) Merkes, Seth Merkes and Luke Merkes; grandchild, Duke Merkes; mother, Betty; siblings, Sheryl (Michael) Motiff and David (Beth) Merkes; and many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. He was preceded in death by his father, Jerome.

A funeral service will be held at CALVARY GOSPEL CHURCH, 5301 Commercial Ave., Madison, at 6 p.m., on Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019, with the Rev. Roy Grant presiding. A visitation will be held at the church from 3 p.m. until the time of the service on Wednesday. Private family burial will be held at Mt. Hope Cemetery, Brooklyn.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established for Jeff’s wife and sons at Associated Bank, 4402 East Towne Blvd., Madison, WI 53704 (608-529-4250). The family wishes to thank the doctors and nurses at UW Hospital for all of their hard work and care given to Jeff over the years. Online condolences may be made at

Gunderson East
Funeral & Cremation Care
5203 Monona Drive
(608) 221-5420