Ralph Leo Buechner
MOUNT HOREB-Ralph Leo Buechner, age 95, of Mount Horeb passed away on Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, at home surrounded by many loved ones. He was born on May 9, 1924, on Main Street in Mount Horeb. Ralph was the son of Joseph and Christina (Wermers) Buechner.
Ralph attended Mount Horeb High School before enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1942 to help with the war effort of World War II. He served throughout the Pacific, mainly in Bougainville and lwo Jima.
Beverly Catherine Birrenkott was the love of Ralph’s life and they entered marriage on Oct. 1, 1949. Together they cherished family and devoted themselves to raising nine children. They created a community of love that now expands four generations.
Ralph inspired us all. His love of God, family and community never waned, and his presence had an enormous influence not only on family, but community as well. Ralph’s career began as a bricklayer under the watchful eye of his father. Together, he and his father built many buildings in Mount Horeb and surrounding areas including Saint Ignatius Catholic Church. He then became owner and operator of Buechner Construction and Redi-Mix. He was also a developer in Mount Horeb and had never truly “retired.”
Ralph was the first president of the Mount Horeb Flying Club, while being a pilot for many years. For 22 years he served as a Bank Director for the Mount Horeb State Bank. He was Community Foundation Director, a member of the Mount Horeb Industrial Board as well as a committed volunteer of the Mount Horeb Fire Department. Ralph was a trustee of the Mount Horeb Village Board and member and past president of the Mount Horeb Lions Club serving meals at the multicultural center and delivering Meals on Wheels. He served as a board member and secretary at Ingleside Living Community, was a member and past Post Commander of the American Legion and a member of the VFW. Times spent hunting at
the Fish Creek Lodge with friends created many special memories.
Ralph was dedicated to God and his faith. He felt he was a “God made man.” He served on the Lay Board for many years at St. Ignatius Catholic Church, was a member of the Knights of Divine Mercy and a 4th degree Knights of Columbus. Ralph and Beverly were founding benefactors of St. Ambrose Academy in Madison. Ralph always had an adventurous spirit. Times spent with him flying, boating, camping and traveling will always be treasured by those who knew him. Attending Badger Football games, tailgating and enjoying Brandy Old Fashioneds with family, friends and new friends were cherished times.
Ralph is survived by his nine children, Joe, Jane (James) Eaton, Jim (Shirley), Janet (Dave) Curley, Jeff (Diane), John (Mary), Jack (Diana), Jerry (Merodee) and Jay (Kristel); 13 grandchildren; five step- grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; four step-great-grandchildren; and one niece, Anne (Ken) Buckwheat.
Ralph was preceded in death by his wife, Beverly; his parents, Joseph and Christina; sisters, Rosemary and Jean Dietz; brother-in-law, Jack Dietz; sister-in-law, Joyce (Bob) Doyle; and parents-in-law, William and Anne (Adler) Birrenkott.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at ST. IGNATIUS CATHOLIC CHURCH, 109 S. 6th St., Mt. Horeb, at 10 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 13, 2019. Visitation will be held at the church from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. with a Rosary at 2:45 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019, and from 9 a.m. until the time of the Mass on Friday.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Mt. Horeb Community Foundation, St. Ambrose Academy, Madison and Hope Clinic, Madison.
Ralph’s generosity, compassion for others and living life as a “trusted and loyal servant” was a constant inspiration to his family. He will be dearly missed.
The Clock of Life is wound but once
And no man has the power to tell
Just when that clock will stop, at late or early hour.
To lose one’s wealth is sad indeed,
To lose one’s health is more,
To lose one’s Soul is such a loss
That no man can restore.
The present only is our own-
So live, love, toil with a will
But place no faith in tomorrow,
For the clock may then be still.
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