Tom Ahrens, age 77 of Appleton, passed away Friday, October 28, 2016. He had battled Lewy Body Dementia for over five years. Tom was born in Appleton on July 20, 1939, son of the late Harold and Mary (Gerarden) Ahrens. He attended Appleton High School, and on July 8, 1961 married Rose DeDecker who survives him. Together, the couple celebrated fifty-five years of marriage this past July. He was employed by Spencer Johnston and J.J. Plank for thirty-eight years, and after a very brief “retirement” spent another ten years working for Bergstrom Lexus of Appleton.
Tom was a wonderful husband and father, always caring for his family. He enjoyed bowling and playing softball with the guys from work. He also loved to play cards, or just spend quiet time at the cottage with dear friends Stan and Sandy Woldt.
He is survived by his wife: Rose Ahrens of Appleton; three children: Michael (Malissa) Ahrens of Menasha; Brian (Melissa) Ahrens of Appleton; and T.J. (Faren) Ahrens of Bristow, Virginia; six grandchildren: Amber Behling, Katie Ahrens, Lexi Ahrens, Baylee Ahrens, Matthew Ahrens, and Elijah Ahrens; a brother: Jack Ahrens of Appleton; a sister: Pat (David) Parry of Winona, Texas; two sisters-in-law: Kathy (Bill) Gardner of Appleton and Terri Schmidt of Seymour; a brother-in-law: Dr. Randy (Nancy) DeDecker of Hortonville; a son-in-law: Kent Stroess; and a step-grandson: Jesse Stroess. There are also several nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many friends. Tom was preceded in death by his parents, a daughter Lisa Stroess, a grandson Nicholas Behling, Rose's parents Harold and Gertrude DeDecker, and his step-father Don Stegert.
A memorial funeral liturgy for Tom will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, November 5, 2016 at ST. THERESE CATHOLIC CHURCH, Morrison Street at Wisconsin Avenue, with Fr. Ryan Starks officiating. Inurnment will take place at Highland Memorial Park. Family and friends are invited to gather at the church on Saturday morning from 9:00 AM until the time of the service. For more information or to share a memory of Tom, please visit www.wichmannfargo.com.
The family would like to thank their many relatives and friends for the prayers and support offered to both Tom and Rose. You have all been so kind to us. Words cannot express our appreciation for the entire staff at The Bridges of Appleton for the lovely care they provided to our entire family and to Tom. You treated him as though he was your very own. We consider you all to be God's special angels here on earth and will never forget your kindness.