Nicholas Roger Harring, Jr., 56, of La Crosse passed away after a brief illness on November 6, 2013 at Mayo Clinic Health System.
He was born April 28, 1957, in La Crosse, Wisconsin to Roger and Mary (Koula) Harring. Nick is survived by his three children Nicholas, Benjamin, and Alyssa, all of La Crosse; his parents Roger and Mary Harring; two sisters Teri (Larry) Pavelec of Mequon, WI; Susan (Michael) Schwartz of La Crosse; brothers Matthew (partner Lynn Stetzer) of New Orleans, LA and Andrew (Bobbi) of Andover, MN; six nieces and nephews, Jenna and Max Pavelec, Josef and Michaela Schwartz, Alyssa Campanaro and Anna Harring, and his fiancÃ©e Karen Sorenson of Clarksville, TN.
Nick graduated from La Crosse Central High School in 1975 where he was captain of the football and basketball teams and earned the National W Club award for student athlete. Nick left La Crosse to attend the University of South Dakota â€“ Vermillion from 1975 to 1976 on an athletic scholarship to play football. But Nick decided to return to La Crosse, the city he loved, in 1977 to attend the University of Wisconsin â€“ La Crosse. Nick attended the School of Business, graduating 1980 with a Bachelor of Science and had the opportunity to play football for UW-L, where he was coached by his father, Roger Harring. Earning NAIA Division II All-American honors as offensive guard in 1978, Nick exemplified the best qualities defining UW-L football: determination, perseverance and commitment to his teammates.
Upon graduation, Nick began his business career working for J.C. Penney Company in Milwaukee, WI. In 1981 he moved to Dearborn, MI to pursue a career in the automobile industry with Ford Motor Company. Ever the entrepreneur, his goal was to own his own business and to move his growing family back to Godâ€™s Country. In 1994 he began Nick Harringâ€™s Valley View Ford dealership in West Salem. He later purchased the Quality Ford dealership in Viroqua. Due to his health, he sold the Viroqua dealership in March of 2013 to move back to La Crosse to be near his beloved children and family.
Nick served on many committees in each of the cities in which he lived. He was always interested in donating his time and energy to the communities he lived in. Whether in his adopted city of Viroqua, or Onalaska, where he raised his children. Nick was a devoted father supporting his children in their activities, either as a coach or cheerleader. Nick stepped in as a hockey coach, even with little experience, when one was needed for the Youth Soccer League in Onalaska. He was a proud parent member of the Hilltopper Athletic Association.
The family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to all the wonderful staff at Mayo-Skemp Hospital, especially Dr. Jamie Schmidt and Dr. Andrea Miller.
A Funeral Mass will be held at 11:00 AM, Saturday November 9, 2013 at Roncalli Newman Center, 1732 State Street, La Crosse, Rev. James Kurzynski will officiate. Friends and Family may call from 5 to 7:00 PM Friday November 8, 2013 at Blaschke & Schneider Funeral Home, 1501 West Avenue So., La Crosse. Friends and family may also call from 10:00 AM until the time of Mass on Saturday.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the UW-L Football Program, c/o University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Foundation, Inc., Cleary Alumni and Friends Center, 615 East Avenue North, La Crosse, WI 54601 or The Harring Children Memorial, c/o W5915 Woodland Drive, La Crosse, WI 54601.