Cashton Record - An Independent Wisconsin Newspaper... Serving The Cashton Area For Over 120 Years!

Ernest "Ernie" Gronemus


January 15, 2020

Ernest “Ernie” Gronemus, 82, of rural Cashton, WI, passed away Saturday, January 11, 2020, at Vernon Memorial Hospital, Viroqua, WI.

Ernie was born March 5, 1937, on the home farm of his parents, Henry and Elizabeth (Schaub) Gronemus. He was born and raised on their beautiful farm in rural LaCrosse County on Middle Ridge. This is where he got the spark and passion for farming and that spark never went out. Ernie farmed with a liking to the animals and to Allis-Chalmers tractors but in later years purchased a John Deere tractor, saying it was a more comfortable ride. Ernie attended grade school at Middle Ridge and high school at Cashton. He had a passion for playing baseball as he grew up. Ernie was a lifelong and active member of the St. Peters Catholic Church, Middle Ridge.

He was united in Holy Matrimony to Kayleen Westfall, at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Sparta, WI, on August 26, 1967. Together they built their life around faith, family and farming. Ernie was a true steward of the land and he made farming his lifelong work.

Ernie was a big Wisconsin sports fan. Watching Milwaukee Brewers Baseball games was one of his favorite pastimes. He also never missed a televised Packer or Badger game. While attending a Badger basketball game at the Kohl Center, he made a brief appearance on the Big Ten Network, his 5-seconds of fame. He also enjoyed putting together puzzles during the winter months. The more pieces the better. The LaCrosse Tribune’s Sudoku puzzles provided a daily challenge during his retirement years. Those who knew him will always remember his “unfiltered” sense of humor. He was a compassionate, loving husband, father, and grandfather who will be missed dearly.

Ernie is survived by five children: Phillip (Carol) Gronemus of Cashton, WI, and their children, Jacob (deceased), Sarah, Mark, Rebecca and Nicholas; Jane (Erick) Jostad of McFarland, WI, and their children Nathan and Mathew; Connie (David) Kuhn of Holmen, WI, and their children, Brandon, Evan and Lauren; John (Christi) Gronemus of West Salem, WI, and their children, Dawson, Carson, Mason and Bronson; and Gary (Sarah) Gronemus of Cashton, WI, and their children, Rian, Emma, Lily, Kate, Madi, Allis and Sadie; brothers and sisters, Eileen Rybarczyk of Spooner, WI, Loretta Clarkin of La Crosse, WI, Alois Gronemus of Big Bend, WI, Mary Mangene of Portage, IN, Agnes (Earl) Hoscheit of Turtle Lake, WI, Margaret (Jerome) Leuck of Cashton, WI, and Rosie Fukey of Texarkana, TX; along with many other relatives and friends.

Ernie was preceded in death by his wife, Kayleen; his parents; grandson, Jacob Gronemus; brother, Leonard Gronemus; brothers-in-law, Bernard Rybarczyk, Donald Clarkin and Michael Fukey.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Monday, January 20, 2020, 11:00 a.m. at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Middle Ridge, WI. Burial will follow in the church cemetery. Family and friends are invited for visitation Sunday, January 19, 2020, beginning at 12:45 PM with the rosary. Visitation will continue until 4:00 PM, at the Torkelson Funeral Home in Cashton, WI. Visitation will also be held from 10:00 a.m. until the time of service on Monday at the church.

The Torkelson Funeral Home of Cashton, WI, is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be offered at


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