Ronald William Homan, 87, passed away peacefully on October 28th, 2020 at the Christian Homestead II, a division of the Waupun Christian Home. His body was weak and his heart was broken. He was met at the gates of Heaven by his wife of 62 years who he lost too soon, just four months previous.
Sonny, as his family called him, was born August 29, 1933, the son of William and Bernice (Workman) Homan in Chicago, Illinois. As a child, Sonny lived in Chicago with his parents. He and his mother moved to live with other family members in Fulton, IL and later Wisconsin while his father served as a Marine in the Pacific during WWII. He had many adventures as a child, including frequent swims with pals across the Mississippi River between Fulton, IL and Clinton, IA, just to go swimming at the city pool in Clinton. Following the war, Ron moved with his parents to a home built by his father on a small, 40-acre farm outside of Waupun, WI, near Alto. Growing up, he ran the farm with his father, learned to hunt and fish, and raised beef and dairy cattle. He proudly showed one of those steers at the first Alto Fair. Ron graduated from Brandon High School in 1951 and earned an auto mechanic certificate from Beaver Dam Vocational-Technical School in 1970. Ronnie married the love of his life, Judith Marie Rulland, on June 21, 1958 when they eloped at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Sterling, IL. Ronnie shared his love of hunting and the outdoors with Judy, even introducing her to trap shooting at the Waupun Gun Club. Ronnie worked construction for Henry Mews during the early years of their marriage. However, he always found time to continue hunting around the farm for pheasant, deer, geese, and small game. He also enjoyed a few trips to Canada, fishing and hunting moose. Moose antlers were prominently displayed in their garage on the farm until they moved to Waupun in 1982. Ron also worked several years for Orlie Gietzel at the Cities Service Station in Waupun putting his auto mechanic degree to use. In 1966, Ron began working for Foremost Foods in the whey plant at the Alto Cooperative Dairy. He worked there until his retirement in 1998. As a father, Ron was a patient man who shared everything he knew with his three daughters. Mom and Dad played active parts in their childhood. They attended school functions, brought the family to church every Sunday, served as club and project leaders for the Alto Allies 4-H Club, and encouraged the girls to learn as much as they could. Ron taught them to experience nature by taking long walks in the woods and by teaching them how to hunt. He took pride in watching them learn to build things and take other things apart. He helped them raise a menagerie of animals on the small farm. Though he was always working on one project or another, he did manage to slow down on Sunday afternoons in the fall to watch the Green Bay Packers. When the family moved off the farm to Waupun, the basement and garage became the woodshop and the Horicon Marsh became his favorite place to enjoy nature. Ron gave his children reasons to be confident in themselves and told each of them to make the most out of every new adventure. As a grandfather, Ron was a hero and teacher to six amazing grandchildren. He eagerly taught the kids how to woodwork, making bird houses with each one. He played games with them inside and reconstructed train tracks more than once. One basement wall in their Waupun house bears the evidence of many archery lessons with Grandpa. He listened to their stories while he showed them how to put a worm on a hook. His eyes lit up as one grandchild brought from the water the smallest sunfish and another pulled up a bigmouth bass, each with the same tiny hook and worm. To this day, any one of the grandkids could have something interesting that she or he would want to confidently show Grandpa to make him smile.
Ron has left a legacy that will grow and appear in new form through those he loved. He is survived by three daughters: Annette Homan of Appleton, WI; Bonnie (Brad) Barnett of Beaver Dam, WI; and Cindy (Wayne) Bailey of Brandon, WI; six grandchildren: Kathryn, Abby, and Ryan Bailey, and Lauren, Emma, and Jackson Barnett. He is further survived by one sister, Linda Werbelow of Beaver Dam, WI; one brother, Larry Homan of Waupun, WI; a brother-in-law, Thomas Rulland of St.Paul, MN and a sister-in-law, Patricia Rulland of Madison, WI. He also has many nieces and nephews that he loved with all his heart.
Ron was preceded in death by his wife, Judy, on July 2, 2020; a brother-in-law, Ralph Werbelow; and two sisters-in-law: Barbara Brissette and Karen Rulland.
Ron and his family want to keep everyone safe and healthy, so they have decided to have a private memorial service with immediate family at Werner-Harmsen Funeral Home in Waupun with Rev. David Knuth officiating.
Burial will follow at Highland Memory Gardens in the town of Trenton.
The family would like to express their sincere gratitude for the hospice services provided to both of their parents, especially to the Homestead II staff and Shannie who gave Dad such gentle, compassionate care and to the Hospice Home of Hope for their vigilant, caring attention to Mom and the tender guidance they provided the family.
Condolences may be sent to any of Ron’s children: Annette, Bonnie or Cindy. Ron was an avid supporter of the Marsh Haven Nature Center. Memorial gifts will be given to the center in his name to support the educational programs provided by the birds of prey.