Judith A. (Rekers) Braucht went home to be with God on Saturday, January 14, 2023. She passed peacefully after a progressive battle with Vascular Dementia and Alzheimer’s, surrounded by family who loved her dearly.
Judy was born on June 13, 1936, in Sibley, Iowa to Ernie and Vera Stachour. She has one brother, James Stachour who remains in Iowa. During her youth, Judy and her brother worked at the root beer stand her family owned and operated.
Encouraged by her parents, Judy found a love of education. In 1954 she began her college career at Iowa State University before transferring to the University of Northern Iowa to earn her teaching certificate. It was there she met her first husband, Don Rekers. They had two children, Scott Alan (Mary) and Marcy Sue (Toni). Shortly thereafter they moved to Sun Prairie, Wisconsin where Judy taught kindergarten at Northside Elementary School. While working and raising her family, she attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison to complete her bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education in 1971 and her master’s degree in Early Childhood Education in 1975.
Years later, friends introduced Judy to her second husband, William C. Braucht. They married, blending families to become what they affectionately called the “Braucht Bunch”. Bill had three children: David (Becky) Braucht, Julie (John) Marshall, and Jenny (Jim) Meyers. The family enjoyed travel, ski trips, excursions to Door County and many laughs together. It was during these years that Judy determined she had one more challenge to meet. In 1981, she earned her Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Administration at UW. Her family was very proud of this achievement. At her graduation, the Wisconsin State Journal captured a photo of the family holding a large banner that read “Yay Dr. Mom!”.
In retirement, Judy and Bill spent many enjoyable years traveling the world, staying active at Westminster Presbyterian church and cheering on the Wisconsin Badgers. Judy volunteered as an Attic Angel for 20 years. She was involved with the Madison Symphony Orchestra, creating a musical instrument program for children. She planned and developed the preschool curriculum for the children of Cuna Mutual’s employees.
Judy lived a full life sharing her passion for children and education. She lived by her mantra, “Be an iron fist in a velvet glove.” She was preceded in death by her husband Bill, her son Scott and her parents. She is survived by her children, thirteen grandchildren and fourteen great grandchildren, her brother and two nieces. Judy was a beautiful loving soul who will be missed dearly by all who knew her.
A memorial service will be held at 11:00 am, Wednesday, January 25, 2023 at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 4100 Nakoma Rd., Madison, WI 53717 with visitation from 10:00 am until 11:00 am at church. A luncheon will follow.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the University of Wisconsin School of Education, Westminster Presbyterian Church or Attic Angel Association.
Please share your memories at www.cressfuneralservice.com
6021 University Ave. Madison