Ronald “Ron” Dee Wilhelm, 74, of Humboldt, passed away Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014 at the St. Elizabeth Regional Medical Center in Lincoln. He was born Sept. 9, 1940 in Verdon to William John and Gertrude Ida (Becker) Wilhelm.
He attended school at Dawson, Bern, KS, and graduated in 1958 from Verdon High School. During his high school years, Ron worked for Chuck Streit and Don Ehrsam doing farm work. Following graduation, he was employed by Lang M System Grocery Store in Humboldt.
On Oct. 1, 1961, Ron was united in marriage to Judith “Judy” Gay Goodhart at the United Methodist Church in Humboldt. To this union three children, Craig, Eric, and Lisa were born. The couple lived in Omaha from September of 1962 to May 1963 while Ron attended Universal Trade School for heating and air conditioning. After moving back to Humboldt, Ron and Judy opened their business, Wilhelm Appliance.
In 1964, Ron joined the National Guard in FC and served until being honorably discharged in 1974.
Ron’s brothers Jim and Gene joined him and they together purchased Lionel Kinsey’s T.V. business and Otto Lang’s plumbing business. Ron did commercial and home refrigeration, electrical and appliance repair. His brother Gene did plumbing and Jim did the television business while all were involved in farming. Sometime later, Gene and Jim left to focus on the farming and Ron changed the name to Wilhelm Plumbing & Electric, focusing on plumbing, heating and air conditioning, electrical, backhoe and trencher services. He and Judy moved the business to the north edge of town and began managing Rural Water District #1 along with the other business until their retirement in May of 2006.
Ron served on the Humboldt City Council, the Colonial Acres Nursing Home Board, and was an active member of the United Methodist Church where he served on many committees over the years. He was also an active member of the Humboldt Chamber of Commerce especially during the Richardson County Fair & Humboldt Fall Festival hooking up each fair stand before there were underground hookups.
He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Bill Wilhelm; nephew, Jeffrey Wilhelm; and parents-in-law, Dale and Ruth Goodhart.
Ron is survived by his wife, Judy; his sons, Craig (Debbie), of Rising City; Eric (Stacey) of Omaha; daughter, Lisa Buchta (Cory Proskocil), of Grand Island; grandchildren, Cierra Wilhelm, of Lincoln; Brittny Wilhelm, of Manhattan, KS; Meredith Wilhelm, of Rising City; Haven Buchta, of Grand Island; Andee (Joe) Rettle, of Fairview, KS; Ryan (Ashlyn) Vonderschmidt, of Tucson, AZ; Reese (Kelsey Brown) Vonderschmidt, of Austin, TX; Austin Moore of Houston, TX; great-grandchildren, Eli Langer, of Lincoln; Aaden and Emersyn Vonderschmidt, of Tucson, AZ; and Louis Rettele, of Fairview, KS; brothers and sister: Jim (Jan) Wilhelm, of Humboldt; Gene (Marsha) Wilhelm, of Dawson; Roger (Sally) Wilhelm, of Humboldt; Donna (Jerry) Little, of Tucson, AZ; Leon (Madaline) Wilhelm, of Falls City; Tom (Susan) Wilhelm, of Falls City; brother-in-law, Lee Goodhart (Karla) of LaCrosse, WI; and many other nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.
Memorial Services will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014 at the United Methodist Church in Humboldt, with Pastors Jaclyn Hoy and Dean Joy officiating. Visitation was Monday, Nov. 3, at The Wherry Mortuary in Humboldt, with family greeting friends at the mortuary. Memorial contributions may be given to the family’s choice.
Online messages of condolence can be left at www.wherrymortuary.com