Willie Ockler, age 89, of Town of Weston, Dunn County, Wisconsin, passed away at his home on January 8, 2022. \n \n William Charles Ockler was born at home on the farm to Sam Ockler and Susan (Stainer) Ockler on September 30, 1932. Willie had three sisters. His first sister Vada Mae died when she was only a few days old. His other sisters whom he grew up with were Dolores Ockler Erickson and Beverly Ockler Hoppe. Willie was baptized and confirmed at New Hope Lutheran Church, Downsville, Wisconsin, on December 9, 1962. His sponsor was his good friend Carl Jensen. \n \n On October 19, 1963, Willie married Judy Kern, also at New Hope Lutheran Church. Willie and Judy had three children, Brenda, Bill, and Becky. As a family they worked hard together on their dairy farm, each one an important part of taking care of what needed doing. Willie was proud that all of his kids knew how to milk cows and work hard. \n \n Willie was a logger. He had his own logging business, Ockler Logging. He loved the woods. On family trips driving through national parks, he would point out big trees and exclaim, “Oh, look at that one!”. After he retired from logging, he enjoyed riding through the woods on his farm on his 4-wheeler or side by side, often with Judy at his side, just looking over the woods and cherishing the feel of being there. \n \n Willie loved the farm. He never grew tired of hearing about the planting or the harvest or how the cows were milking. His son Bill did not dare plant corn in the field between Willie’s and Judy’s house and the farm buildings, because it would block Willie’s view of the activity on the farm from his easy chair by the picture window. \n \n Willie cared about his church family and his neighbors. He served as the president of the Lower Weston Cemetery Association for many years. He also served on the Weston Town Board many years as chairman, and he was on church council a few times at New Hope. \n \n It is hard to express how much Willie’s family meant to him. He and Judy seemed their absolute happiest when they had their children and grandchildren all together. Willie did not just sit and enjoy company; he needed to know what was going on in everyone’s lives, and he asked detailed questions about each person’s current goings on, even the day before he passed away. He needed to know how much the steers brought at market, how Becky’s drive to work was on a foggy morning, how school was going for the grandkids. He never stopped caring or being interested. He was that way with people beyond his family, too, always asking people all about themselves, really caring about their answers, and trying to remember their individual stories for next time they met. \n \n Willie is survived by his daughter Brenda (R. John) Steinberger, grandsons Andrew and Sam (Kayla); son Bill (Penny) Ockler, grandchildren Abby, Emily (fiancé Brady), and Will; and daughter Becky (Brian) Evan, grandchildren Brent and Brooke; his dear little sister Beverly (Ockler) Hoppe of River Falls, WI, and sister-in-law Julia Kern of Eatonton, Georgia, and lots of dear nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends. \n \n He was preceded in death by his wife Judy in April 2021, parents Sam and Susie, sisters Vada Mae Ockler and Dolores (Ockler) Erickson, brothers-in-law Carl Erickson, Bill Hoppe, Dutch Kern, and Dick Kern, and sister-in-law Betty Kern. \n \n Willie’s family send their heartfelt thanks and appreciation to Pastor Judy Kincaid and her family; Dr. Nathan Rich of Mayo Red Cedar; Karen from Meals on Wheels; his many helpers from Visiting Angels and Interim Home Healthcare and Hospice, with special thanks to Linda for her dedicated care and friendship; and to all of Willie’s friends and relatives who stopped in to visit or called him up to chat. Please know how much you all meant to him and how much joy you gave him. \n \n Funeral Services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, January 12, 2022 at New Hope Lutheran Church in Downsville, WI with Rev. Dr. Judy Kincaid officiating. Burial will take place at Lower Weston Cemetery, Township of Weston, Dunn County. There will be a visitation from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Tuesday, January 11, 2022 at Olson Funeral Home in Menomonie and also one hour prior to the service at the church on Wednesday. The funeral service will be recorded and available to view online the following day.