Cover photo for James "Chris" Rutter's Obituary
James "Chris" Rutter Profile Photo
1959 James 2022

James "Chris" Rutter

October 30, 1959 — March 9, 2022

Wheeling, Illinois

James Christopher Rutter, better known as “Chris”, aged 62 years, passed away on March 9, 2022, at Agrace Hospice Care in Madison, WI following an aggressive cancer diagnosis and rapid decline. Chris was born on October 30, 1959, in Des Moines, IA, to James and Mary (Odegard) Rutter. He graduated from Homestead High School in Mequon, WI, following which he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at Carlton College in Northfield, MN. At Carlton, Chris developed an interest in Japanese culture and martial arts, prompting a relocation to Kyoto, Japan, in 1982 where he remained for 7 years. In addition to working at Minolta there, he trained and competed in various martial art forms. After his return to the United States, Chris utilized his acquired conversational fluency in several Asian languages to facilitate business trade and development throughout his career at both Brady Corp in Milwaukee and ITW in Chicago. Chris enjoyed traveling the world and experienced many remote and exotic destinations for both business and pleasure. He was also a lover of books and leaves behind a unique and esoteric library.

His boundless zest for life, new experiences, and a reliably wry and delightful sense of humor rewarded him with an abundance of close and life-long friends.

Chris is survived by his parents; brother, Gregg (Debra) Rutter, Charlotte, NC; brother, Burton (Renay) Rutter, Saint Paul, MN; nephew, Sam Rutter, Green Bay, WI; niece, Helen (Andre) Egros, Charlotte, NC; nephew, Frank Rutter, Milwaukee, WI; niece, Carly (Nicholas) McCormack, Coon Rapids, MN; and many, many good friends. Chris’ family is very grateful for your kind thoughts and prayers during this time and asks that you find comfort in your many memories laughing with Chris. If you wish, in lieu of flowers, Chris asks that you please consider a contribution to a deserving organization supporting refugees and families with children who have sought freedom and a new life in our country.

"Breathing in, I have become a space without boundaries. I have no plans left. I have no luggage. Breathing out, I am the moon that is sailing through the sky of utmost emptiness. I am freedom."
– Thich Nhat Hanh

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(608) 238-3434

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