John Herbert Casey passed away peacefully at his home surrounded by family on August 21, 2012. He was born February 19, 1933, in Kenosha to the late Thomas and Blanche (Emery) Casey.
He was educated in Kenosha schools, attending St. James Grade School and Lincoln Jr. High School, graduating from Kenosha High School in 1951.
He worked for the Simmons Company and American Motors Corporation before entering the U.S. Army in 1953, being honorably discharged after serving 17 months in Korea.
John attended the UW-Extension Center in Kenosha for two years where he met his future wife, Gail Larsen. They were married in 1958 at St. James in Kenosha. After completing his college studies at UW-Whitewater with a degree in elementary education, he taught elementary school in Edgerton, Wis., and at Weiskopf and Durkee schools in Kenosha. He held a lifetime license from the Wisconsin Department of Public Education.
In the early 1960s, John and his longtime friend, Jack Kotz owned Kenosha Billiards (the Hole), managed the Kenosha Pirates semi-pro baseball team, and operated Kenosha Securities and Investment Firm.
In 1964, John began a new career with Jockey International as cutting room supervisor, followed by plant manager and director of manufacturing. In 1985, he was named vice president of Human Resources, responsible for employees at all 14 U.S. locations. He was a licensed leader effectiveness training instructor, teaching numerous classes while at Jockey. He retired in 1995 after 31 years of service.
John was a part owner of Casey Family Options Funeral and Cremations LLC.
He was a member of St. Thomas Aquinas Church where he served as CCD instructor, lector, commentator and president of the Parish Council. Later, John and his family became members of St. Mark Church. He was a member of the Serra Club of Kenosha serving as board member and president. He also served six years as a member and president of the St. Joseph High School Board of Trustees. He was a board member and president of Kenosha Downtown Rotary, a three-time Paul Harris Fellow, and a Board Member of the Rotary International World Affairs Seminar. In addition, John served on the boards of Boy Scouts of America, United Way of Kenosha, Kenosha Christmas Charities (Goodfellows), Kenosha Neighborhood Housing, Kenosha Management/Labor Council, and the American Apparel Manufacturing Association.
Following retirement, John and Gail wintered in Arizona for eight years until they bought a home in Winter Haven, Fla., where they spent the past eight winters. They enjoyed traveling, visiting all 50 states, China, Russia, South and Central America, and many European countries, including three trips to Ireland where they took their family for their 50th anniversary. He and the entire family enjoyed 42 summer vacations at Robertson’s Cottages in Sturgeon Bay, most recently in early August 2012.
He enjoyed golfing, woodworking, reading and watching sports, but most of all John treasured his family and being with them. He watched his grandchildren at many youth sports events, school music concerts and dance recitals.
John is survived by his wife, Gail; daughter, Ann Casey (Rob Laux) of Madison; son, Stephen Casey (Jennifer) of Kenosha; daughters, Beth Casey, Jane Larsen (Eric) and Lynn Wilk (David), all of Kenosha. He is also survived by nine grandchildren; Michael John Herbert, Elizabeth and Thomas John Casey, Emily and John Laux, Casey and Sophia Larsen, Jackson and Audrey Wilk.; a brother, James (Mary Ann) of Shorewood, Ill., and 13 nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; his brother, Richard Casey, and his sister, Barbara Bostetter.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on August 25, 2012 at St. Mark Catholic Church, with the Very Reverend James Lobacz officiating. Private burial took place at Southern Wisconsin Veterans Cemetery.