Sydney W. Olsen

Sydney W. Olsen

ORFORDVILLE — Sydney W. Olsen, age 82, of Orfordville and formerly of Janesville, lost his battle from CHF, suffering from a long history of heart and Parkinson’s disease, died on Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014, at Beloit Memorial Hospital.

He was born in London, WI on Dec. 25, 1931, the son of Lester and Mildred (Behm) Olsen. He graduated from Cambridge High School in 1948, where he excelled in sports. In his senior year, his Class C basketball team won the State Championship, and he won first place in the Long Distance 440, setting a new State record. He married Betty Bosacki on Sept. 2, 1951. He graduated from New Lisbon Teacher’s College and taught school in Dillenbeck School, a one-room classroom, and was the last teacher to have taught there. He went on to work for General Motors in the Quality Control Dept., retiring in 1994.

Sydney and Betty began traveling and spending many months in Arizona. He was an excellent hunter, fine gunsmith, which he continued to do until February of 2014. He had a love of history, reading, traveling, a proud member of the Republican Party, and was an elected member of the Orfordville School Board. Sydney and his wife owned and operated the Bright Air Kennel, and as a licensed handler, showed dogs throughout the United States. He showed dogs for Andy Williams and Vivian Vanz, winning Best-in-Show in 1972. He was a Boy Scout leader for Troup 539 at St. William Catholic School, taking his 35 boys to the Nationals in Idaho in 1968.

Sydney had an open door home, raising 7 children and fostering many more. He was proud of his American Indian Heritage and went on to sponsor yearly an American Indian child.

He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Betty Olsen; 7 children: Mark (Kathy) Olsen of Tennessee, Valerie (Todd) Wyman of Janesville, Paul Olsen of Afton, Matthew (Jackie) Olsen of Orfordville, Andrew (Lisa) Olsen of Orfordville, Peter (Jenny) Olsen of Orfordville and David Olsen of Orfordville; 12 grandchildren; 4 step great grandchildren; 11 great grandchildren and another 2 expected in April; brother, Gary (Lea) Olsen of Stevens Point; sister, Susan Olsen of Woodstock; sister-in-law, Jean Hansen; and friend, Owen Snyder.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 24, 2014, at ST. WILLIAM CATHOLIC CHURCH with Rev. John Auby officiating. A visitation will be held on Sunday from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. at the church. Lasting Memorials may be made to Send-a-Kid to Camp, Boy Scouts of America, Glazer Edge, 2300 E. Racine St., Janesville, WI 53545.

SCHNEIDER APFEL SCHNEIDER & SCHNEIDER FUNERAL HOME & CREMATORY is assisting the family. For on-line condolences and registry: