THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Duane Braham, 77, of Gillett, passed away suddenly Tuesday afternoon, Jan 31 at St. Clare Memorial Hospital.
Born June 24, 1939 in St. Paul, Mn., to Erwin and Josephine (Schmalzbauer) Braham, he grew up in the New Brighton area, attended St. John's Catholic School and graduated from Moundsview High School in 1957. He served in the United States Air Force and worked as a radar tech while stationed in Canada and Northern Minnesota.
In 1961, he married Janice Newcomb in St. Paul and worked for loan companies. He then worked at Wisconsin Finance and they lived in Elkhorn and Green Bay. The couple moved to rural Gillett in 1972 to raise beef cattle and soon after he worked as a loan officer at Gillett State Bank for many years. He was also an auction clerk throughout northeastern Wisconsin.
A founding officer of Community Bank in Oconto Falls, he worked there as an officer and vice president until retirement and farmed until recently. He served as treasurer of the Oconto County Fair Board and was active in Rotary for many years.
He enjoyed attending sporting events of his two grandsons and hunting and fishing with them. Even though it was stressful he liked watching the Minnesota Vikings, Gopher Hockey and the Minnesota Wild. He will be remembered for hosting an annual family booyah event that included cribbage, horseshoes, fireworks, good food and cold drinks.
Survivors are his wife of 55 years, Jan; two daughters, Jodi Braham and Staci (John) Braham-Stary and two grandsons, all of Gillett; a brother, Al Olson, St. Paul, Mn.; a sister, Mary Olson-Reed, Duluth, Mn.; two sisters-in-law, Carol Smith and Marsha Newcomb, both of Minnesota; six nieces and nephews; many cousins and friends.
Along with his parents, he was preceded in death by two brothers-in-law, Gene and Bruce Newcomb.
Visitation with the urn present was held at St. Anthony Catholic Church in Oconto Falls on Saturday, Feb. 4 from 9:30 a.m. until time of a Mass of Christian Burial at 11:30 a.m. Rev. Fr. Joel Sember officiated followed by burial with military honors in the Church Cemetery. Jones Funeral Service of Oconto Falls assisted the family with arrangements.