William H. Bopf

COLUMBUS/LAKE MILLS-William H. Bopf, age 82, of Columbus, passed away on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018, at Larson House.  He was born on Oct. 20, 1935, in Wausau, the son of Leslie and Della (Fierke) Bopf.    

William attended Valparaiso University, Valparaiso, Ind., 1953 to 1954, majoring in music.  He then attended University of Wisconsin - Marathon County Center 1954 to 1955.  He received B.S. degree in education and music in 1958, from Concordia Teachers College, River Forest, Ill., and his M.A. degree in music and education in 1968, from Concordia Teachers College, River Forest, Ill. William was united in marriage to Virginia Kraemer on Aug. 8, 1959, by Pastor Louis Huber at St. Mark Lutheran Church, Sheboygan.    

He was educator and musician in Lutheran congregations in Sheboygan, Mequon, and Milwaukee, Wis.; Detroit and Flint, Mich.; and Orlando, Fla.  After 22 years in church work, he went to work as a systems analyst/programmer in Milwaukee and Middleton.  For many years he served as substitute and interim organist in congregations of many denominations in the Milwaukee and Madison areas.  Upon retirement in 1997, Bill joined Virginia in their childcare, The B’s House, in the lower level of their home in Lake Mills.    

In 2002, Bill miraculously survived a dissected aneurysm of his ascending aorta.  After almost a month in hospitals it was decided he would completely retire, although he continued serving as organist at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Waterloo for many years.   

Upon retirement he became active in his church, Luther Memorial, in Madison.  He served on the Church Council, as an usher, and on various committees, as well as performed other duties when called upon.  He was also active in The Friends of the L. D. Fargo Public Library in Lake Mills.    

William is survived by his wife, Virginia; son, Michael Bopf (Bonnie Chamberlain) of Bethesda, Md.; daughter, Elisabeth (Thomas) Mitchell of Rio, Wis.; granddaughter, Cassandra Rose Bopf; step-granddaughter, MaKayla Mitchell; and step-grandsons, Owen and Tylar Hankins. He is further survived by sister, Beverly Martino of Rothschild; sister-in-law, Barbara Clausen of South Bend, Ind.; and many other relatives and friends.    

A funeral service will be held at LUTHER MEMORIAL CHURCH, 1021 University Ave., Madison, at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018.  Visitation will be held at the church from 1 p.m. until the time of the service on Saturday. Inurnment will take place at Luther Memorial Church at a later date.  

Memorials may be gifted in William’s name to Luther Memorial Church or Alzheimer’s Association. Online condolences may be made at 

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

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