Howard “Howie” Ervin Mess, Sr., of Menomonee Falls, age 74, passed away on December 2, 2017 at home surrounded by his loving family. He was born on April 24, 1943 in Milwaukee to Henry and Lucinda (nee Oppermann) Mess. He graduated from Wisconsin Lutheran High School Class of ’61. Howard married Linda Jean (nee Baldwin) Mess on September 21, 1973.
He enlisted in the US Army on December 1, 1964, served in Vietnam, and was honorably discharged on November 8, 1966. He retired in 1997 from A.O. Smith, Corp. after 33 years. Howie raced the dirt tracks of Hales Corners, Cedarburg, Slinger, Shawano, and De Pere, among other tracks occasionally. He was a track welder for Slinger Super Speedway for over 45 years. He also enjoyed working on various welding projects and gardening.
He is survived by his wife Linda; children, Tami (Darrell) De Ridder, Howard “Bugs” (Sarah) Mess, Jr., and Lisa (Bob) Brown; grandchildren, Zachary, Samantha, and Nathan De Ridder, Cole Beimborn, Benjamin and Mackenzie Mess, Tucker Brown; siblings, Nancy Mess, Will (Mary) Mess, Cheryl (Jack) Meyer, Sr., Fred (Alberta) Mess; mother-in-law Betty Baldwin; siblings-in-law, Chris (Dennis) Stanislowski, Mark (special friend Carolyn Schatz) Baldwin, Robin (Bob) Dumouchel, Cathy (Chad) Johnson; special friend Jon “Jack” Brandt; and his lab, Izzy. He is further survived by nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.
Howie is preceded in death by his parents; brother Marvin; father-in-law Jim Baldwin; special friends, Jim “Red” Michaelsen and Bernie Flood.
The Funeral Service will be held on Friday, December 8, 2017 at 6:30 PM at the Phillip Funeral Home Chapel (1420 W Paradise Drive, West Bend) with Pastor Jeffrey Berg presiding. The Visitation will be held on Friday, December 8th from 3:00 PM until the time of service at 6:30 PM. Interment will take place on Saturday, December 9th at 10:30 AM at Pinelawn Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Martin Luther Evangelical Lutheran Church and School (1526 Algoma Blvd, Oshkosh, WI 54901-2721).
The family would like to express a special thank you to Drs. Jeffrey Jackson and Mark Kaeppler and the patient care staff of 5C North at the VA Medical Center in Milwaukee, and also to Jaimie and Michael of Compassionate Care Hospice.