Claude Henry Radtke, age 94, of Appleton returned to the Lord on October 31, 2021 at Oak Park Place in Menasha. Claude was born on July 31, 1927 in Appleton to the late Oscar and Edna (Schmidt) Radtke. He was a 1945 graduate of Appleton High School. After graduation he served his country as a member of the U.S. Navy. After discharge from the Navy, he attended Lawrence University where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Education. During his time at Lawrence University he lettered in football, basketball and track. In football, he was named Lawrence’s 1st Little All-American and was also named to Lawrence’s inagural Hall of Fame class for his participation in all sports. After graduation, he was drafted by the Green Bay Packers, but life took him in a different direction as he pursued a career as a teacher and football coach. While he was in Ft. Atkinson, he coached their football team to back-to back Conference Titles in 1956 and 1957. Over time he completed his education with a Master’s in Counselling from UW Madison and transferred to Roosevelt Junior High School in Appleton where he served as a guidance counselor. Next, he joined the amazing faculty at Appleton East High School, when it opened in 1967, where he worked until his retirement in 1992.
On July 31, 1965 he was united in marriage to the former Sandra “Sandy” Schulz at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Appleton, and she preceded him in death in 2017. They were active members of Faith Lutheran Church in Appleton, where Claude and Sandy liked singing in the Choir.
Claude’s family and faith meant the world to him. His favorite activities included time with his children and grandchildren. He would attend all events he could. He loved being up north in Eagle River. He also enjoyed bowling, golf, fishing and hunting. In addition to family events, he enjoyed attending Lawrence University sporting events as well.
Claude was a people person who had a unique ability to make everyone feel special. A kind word or a hug was often all it took.
He will be sadly missed by sons Scott (Sara) Radtke and Mike (Jenny) Radtke; grandchildren Hannah and Alexander Radtke, Kate, Allie, and Josh Radtke; 3 siblings; Verna Purdom, Delores Steil and Marilyn (Ken) Hinz, and many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Sandy, brothers-in-law; Bill (Verna) Strelow, Chuck Purdom, and Mel Steil.
Funeral Services will be on Friday November 5, 2021, at 11:00am at Faith Lutheran Church, 601 East Glendale Avenue in Appleton with Rev. Daniel Thews officiating. There will be visitation on Thursday November 4, 2021 from 4:00pm to 7:00pm at Wichmann Funeral Homes, Superior Street Location. Visitation will continue Friday from 10:00am to 11:00am at Faith Lutheran Church. Interment will be at Highland Memorial Park in Appleton.
Services for Claude will be broadcast live by the church. To join the service remotely, please visit the church website at https://www.faithfoxvalley.org/ and click on the “Watch and Listen” tab.
For more information and to express condolences, please visit www.wichmannfuneralhomes.com.
The family would like to express a thank you to the staff and nurses at Oak Park Place and St. Croix Hospice for the care given to Claude.
In lieu of flowers and other expressions of sympathy, a memorial fund will be established.