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1936 Wenzel J. Smetana 2024

Wenzel J. Smetana

February 21, 1936 — March 8, 2024

La Crosse

Wenzel ‘Weasel’ Joseph Smetana was born in Burlington, Wisconsin to Joseph and Clara Smetana on February 21, 1936. He passed into eternal life on March 8, 2024.

Wenzel was baptized at St. Mary’s Catholic Church and attended St. Mary’s School from first grade through graduation in 1954.

Wenzel married Edna McCarthy on October 16, 1954. They raised their ten children in Burlington before relocating to La Crosse, Wisconsin in 1990 to semi-retire.

Wenzel was a natural athlete, sharing his love of sports with his brothers and his children. He was a diehard Chicago Cubs fan, experiencing nirvana in October 2016 with the Cubs World Series win!

Wenzel was a gifted carpenter and woodworker. He created unique and personal keepsakes for innumerable family and friends. He used his craft during years of home renovations for Edna, his children, and many neighbors. He couldn’t say no.

Wenzel was a valued and dedicated employee of Sentry Foods in Burlington for 36 years. After relocating to La Crosse he used his time and talents at Bethany-St. Joseph’s nursing home until his full retirement.

Wenzel enjoyed the great outdoors as an avid pheasant and duck hunter. Through the years he was accompanied by his faithful furry companions: Whitey, Windy, Bo Derek, Emma, Maxine, and Wendy. He also loved to fish, in his rare solitary moments. His go-to spots were Norton’s Lake in Burlington and Jersey Valley in La Crosse. His favored catch was always a blue gill, measured by the amount of meat, not the length of the catch.

Wenzel is survived by his wife of nearly 70 years, Edna; his children Sue Vandenboom, Jim Smetana, Bill Smetana, Bob Smetana, Scott (Andi) Smetana, Jenee Haupt, Joan (Ted) Smetana-Dremel, Jane (Mike) Smetana-Cerniglia and Joseph Smetana; as well as 20 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. He is furthered survived by his brothers Mike (Dianne) Smetana and Pat (Red) Smetana, and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his sister, Ione Dawley; his son, Steven Smetana; and son-in-laws, Terry Vandenboom and Joe Haupt.

Special thanks to Gundersen Hospice for their care of Wenzel in his final days, especially Emily, Nicole, Gloria, Teresa, and Dawn.

A Prayer Service will be held at 1:00 PM on Saturday, March 23, 2024, in Blaschke & Schneider Funeral Home, 1501 West Ave. South, La Crosse. Rev. Brian D. Konopa will officiate, with visitation to follow until 3:00 PM. A Memorial Mass will be held in Burlington at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Burlington Catholic Central (formerly St. Mary’s High School) or charity of choice in memory of Wenzel.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Wenzel J. Smetana, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Prayer Service

Saturday, March 23, 2024

1:00 - 1:30 pm (Central time)

Blaschke Schneider Funeral Home

1501 West Avenue South, La Crosse, WI 54601

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Visitation

Saturday, March 23, 2024

1:30 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

Blaschke Schneider Funeral Home

1501 West Avenue South, La Crosse, WI 54601

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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