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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Robert J. Fink

Issue Date: December 22, 2021

Robert J. Fink was born in Chicago, Ill on August 24,1923 to Roy Fink and Lorena (nee McNamara) Fink; he died on December 18, 2021. Seldom do so many very strong and positive traits exist in a single person; even more seldom when that person develops and uses each and everyone of those talents to the fullest possible extent.

Born and raised in Chicago, a graduate of St. Leo High School, Robert attended Notre Dame University as a premed student and then Loyola University Medical School where he received his Medical Doctor degree. He then trained at Cook County Hospital in his chosen specialty of Pathology which he then practiced for more than 40 years.

While training at "County" he met a beautiful young nurse, Deborah White; they were married on January 9, 1949. After completing his training, Dr. Fink and his family joined the United States Navy where he served as a Commissioned Officer and member of the Medical Corps.

After an honorable discharge he practiced for several years in Bethesda, Maryland. In 1957 Bob and Deb and their growing family moved to Eau Claire, Wisconsin where he built a state of the art hospital medical practice at Sacred Heart Hospital including encouraging the Nursing Sisters to build the new Sacred Heart Hospital on its current campus. He provided the highest quality pathology services to hospitals throughout Northwestern Wisconsin as well as at Sacred Heart, constantly introducing the most advanced and effective procedures to the medical community.

A remarkable husband, the father of eight children, father-in-law, grandfather and great-grandfather to more than 95 family members, he was a man who recognized his gifts, developed them fully and shared them constantly and lovingly.

He was obviously an exceptionally intelligent man but more than that he had a vision to not only see clearly what was but also what could be and the will and spirit to make it happen. This was true in his personal life as well. He embodied the constant learner and servant leader, serving Eau Claire County as its Coroner/ Medical Examiner on countless occasions, leading the education of medical technologists at the university for several decades among his many efforts to improve the community that he loved. He took great pride that his medical technology students regularly scored in the top 10% of medical technology students in the national registry exams ?? twice having a student finish first in the nation.

He had a great love for his family and shared his riches of time and treasure with them constantly. He set an example of integrity, hard work and good humor.

It is the mark of any person that that those around him are better because of him and in the case of Dr. Fink nothing could be more true. His mark is so deep and so wide, covering not only more than four generations in this family but scores of others in the medical profession and community at large.

His family often marveled that Dr. Fink would sit and read for hours not only medical journals and the newest medical textbooks but also a steady stream of books on subjects relating to civilization, natural science, economics and most importantly the 54 volumes of the Great Books of the Western World series. Unlike so many of us he not only owned those books but he read them, cover to cover, and each book bears his underlining and marginal notes to prove it.

So much about this remarkable man is about learning ?? constant and cutting edge ?? but also about sharing knowledge and enthusiasm for that learning with all around him.

He loved going to "Coffee" where he relished the spirited disagreements with Wally and his buddies, The ROMEO club ("Retired Old Men Eating Out") and of course poker with the young guys (below 80 years old). He loved to win!

Dr. and Mrs. Fink had 8 children, 6 of whom survive: Barbara (Jim) Morrison, Thomas Finch, Deborah (Bob) Ridenour, the late Susan (Rick) Hendel, the late Andrea (Peter) Gianaris, Karen Fink, James (Jackie) Fink and John (Kelly) Fink, 42 grandchildren and 41 great-grandchildren.

Dr. Robert J. Fink joins his beloved Deborah, Susan and Andrea in the place that the Lord made for him for all time ?? where he is undoubtedly finally able to debate the Great Books with the authors themselves. He comes well prepared.

A Visitation will be held on Friday, January 14, 2022 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Hulke Family Funeral Home, 3209 Rudolph Rd., Eau Claire, WI 54701. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, January 15, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Patrick Parish, 316 Fulton St., Eau Claire, WI 54703. A Visitation will be held on Saturday, at the Church from 10:00 a.m. until the time of Mass. Burial will take place at Calvary Cemetery in Eau Claire. In lieu of flowers memorials to Sacred Heart Hospital or the Regis High School Foundation are appreciated.

Friends and family may offer condolences online at www.hulkefamilyfh.com Hulke Family Funeral Home & Cremation Services in Eau Claire is assisting the family with arrangements.


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