T. Joseph ‘Joe’ Ready
1918 - 2013
T. Joseph “Joe” Ready, 95, of Watertown, passed away peacefully in his sleep at the Marquardt Health Center in Watertown on Saturday, Dec. 14, 2013, surrounded by his loving family.
A Mass of Christian burial will be on Saturday at 11 a.m. at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church in Watertown with Monsignor Daniel Ganshert presiding. Burial will be in St. Bernard’s Catholic Cemetery in Watertown. Relatives and friends may call to pay their respects at the Hafemeister Funeral Home in Watertown on Friday from 4 to 7 p.m., with a Rosary being held at 7 p.m. Visitation will also be at the church on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. until the time of the Mass. Memorials are suggested to the church, the Marquardt Foundation Staff Appreciation Fund or to the charity of one’s choice. Hafemeister Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Watertown is serving the family.
Thomas Joseph was born in Watertown on July 31, 1918, son of Thomas and Mary (Rebstein) Ready. His mother passed away when Joe was an infant. He was raised by his father and stepmother, Julia (McGrath) Ready. He attended grade school in a one-room schoolhouse in Richwood and attended Watertown High School.
On April 10, 1938, he married the former Alma Nell at St. John’s Lutheran Church. Alma preceded him in death on July 4, 1990. On July 31, 1993, Joe married Bertha Weissenrieder at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church in Watertown. Bertha preceded Joe in death on April 13, 2009.
Joe was an independent insurance agent for more than 60 years. He served on the Dodge County Board of Supervisors for 58 consecutive years, which is a state and national record, 20 years on the Watertown City Council, serving as president for two of those years, and was on the Watertown Library Board. Joe also served as governor of the Moose Lodge, was a board member of the St. Vincent De Paul Society, the Plattdeutscher Verein, Watertown Turners, over 60 years in Watertown Elks Lodge, former member of Agri-Business and a member of the AMVETS. He had been a candidate for state Assembly and state Senate, and former Dodge County Democratic Party chairman.
Joe was honored in 2004 by having the Main Street bridge named after him.
He was a member of St. Bernard’s Catholic Church, served on the Parish Council, was an usher and served on the St. Bernard’s Catholic Cemetery Association.
Survivors include his children, Josephine M. Kaul of Beaver Dam,; Nancy C. (Kay) Buchert of Beloit, Thomas J. (Kathy) Ready of Watertown, Vincent J. (Connie) Ready of Escondido, Calif., Michael J. (Dawn) Ready of Watertown, Patrick J. (Debra) Ready of Stoughton and Carmel M. (Clifford) Lueck of Watertown; grandchildren, Julie (Greg) Steil, Michael (Vickie) Kaul, Maggie (Brad) Starr, Kelly (Randy) Tinder, Jay (Kelly) Buchert, Patrick (Denice) Buchert, Jeff (Shelly) Ready, Jacqueline (Tim) Frey, Sabrina (Kevin) Brock, Brendan Ready, Veronica Ready, Olivia Ready, Justin (Shannon) Ready, Joshua (Jenny) Lasco, Derek (Nichelle) Ready, Monica (Ian) Lacasse, Jacob Ready, Andrea (Chris) Vigil, Sean Ready, Gabrielle (Nathan) Zastrow, Nathaniel (Lauren) Lueck and Emily (Bob Novotny Jr.) Lueck; 27 great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; a brother, Norbert Ready of Fort Atkinson; as well as nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends; Bertha’s children, Bonnie (Rocky) Bohlman, Ruth (Neil) Baumann, Valerie (Joseph) Coughlin, Rosalie (Ross) Volkert, Robert (Karen) Weissenrieder, Annette (Larry) Frentzel, Pamela Weissenrieder, Daniel (Connie) Weissennrieder; Bertha’s son-in-law, Dale Weis, and her grandchildren.
Joe was also preceded in death by his parents; a son, Robert; a daughter-in-law, Marilyn Ready; a son-in-law, Thomas Kaul; a granddaughter, Kathleen Kaul; his two sisters, Carol Kreuziger-Burkett and Julia Kuerschner; and Bertha’s daughter, Linda Weis.
The family would like to thank the staff at Watertown Hospital, Marquardt Health Center, and Zinzendorf Hall for the wonderful care and compassion they provided Joe and his family.
Hafemeister Funeral Home and Cremation Service 611 E. Main St. Watertown
History of Watertown, Wisconsin