ebook  History of Watertown, Wisconsin


Gerhard “Gerry” W. Franzmann



Gerhard “Gerry” W. Franzmann entered glory with Christ at the age of 97 at Heritage Homes in Watertown on Saturday, March 12, 2016. Gerry was born on Aug. 21, 1918, in Lake City, Minn., to William and Else Franzmann and was the youngest of nine children. Funeral services will be held on Thursday at 11 a.m., at Trinity Lutheran Church in Watertown with the Rev. Brett Brauer officiating. Relatives and friends may gather at the church on Thursday from 10 a.m. until the time of the service.  Burial will be in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Watertown at a later date. Hafemeister Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Watertown is serving the family. Online condolences may be made at


Gerry was baptized in August of 1918, and when he was 4 years old, the family moved to Stillwater, Minn. There he was confirmed in April of 1932 and attended both elementary school and high school. He then attended the Wisconsin Synod’s Northwestern College in Watertown, graduating in 1941.


In 1944 Gerry graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary in Thiensville/Mequon, and married the former Marion Maltz in Watertown. He started his pastoral career at New London, and after a year, he served Lutheran congregations in Dale, Fort Atkinson, Seattle, Wash., and Wauwatosa, before joining the faculty at Northwestern Preparatory School and College in Watertown in 1959; later retiring in 1994 at 76 years old.


Gerry is survived by a sister-in-law Patricia (Carl) Franzmann, New York; many stepchildren, nieces and nephews.


He was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Marion (Maltz), who died in 1983; his second wife, Bernetta (Coughlin), who died in 1999; his third wife, Eleonore (Cares) who died in 2016; and siblings Ernst, Werner, Martin, Carl, Renata (Carl) Thiel, Elfrieda (Raymond) Walstrom, Helen (Arthur) Katt and William.


Confirmation verse:  For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed, saith the LORD that hath mercy on thee.” Isaiah 54:10. KJV


Gerry enjoyed sharing his Christian faith, daily devotions, long-lasting friendships from Northwestern College, teaching, preaching, singing in various groups and church choir, married life, his home on the Rock River, traveling, exploring the back roads of Wisconsin in his VW automobiles, camping at state parks in his VW Vanagon, presenting slides of his trips, riding his bike, one martini a day, one dark chocolate a day before it became the healthy thing to do, staying fit, gourmet dining, reading, challenging crossword puzzles and puns. If Gerry had a motto it would be “live simply, enjoy fully.


“Rest in peace Uncle, you’ve done the family proud.”


Memorials may be given to Trinity Lutheran Church, 604 S. Fifth St., Watertown; Heritage Homes or Rainbow Hospice.


The family greatly appreciates and would like to thank the pastors of Trinity Lutheran Church, the staff at Heritage Homes as well as Rainbow Hospice Care for their dedicated and exceptional care.


Hafemeister Funeral Home and Cremation Service 611 E. Main St. Watertown




Table of Contents 

History of Watertown, Wisconsin