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1939 Marek 2023

Marek J. Hann

November 24, 1939 — July 20, 2023


Madison-Marek J. Hann, age 83, passed away on July 20, 2023.  He was born in Warsaw, Poland on November 24, 1939 to Zygmunt Hann and Zofia Schmidt, Puttusk, Poland.  It was back in 1944 that, the young Marek Hann and his mother returned from their summer home to find that Marek’s father, who had been a lawyer, had been killed by Nazis in the 30-day uprising of partisans.  His father had inherited a piece of land 30 miles from the city, from his brother, who was tortured and killed by the Nazis.  His brother built a cottage on this piece of land, so Marek and his mother would be safe.   Marek also lost uncles that were in the Royal Airforce, and one in North Africa.  He also had an aunt that survived Auschwitz.  Their home in Warsaw had been demolished, as had much of the city of Warsaw, and most of their possessions were gone. 

Nineteen years later, William Merriam, then 1st District Assemblyman, visited the country as part of a People to People tour of Europe which included four days in Poland.  Merriam was leader of the delegation of government officials who made the 21-day visit, and he became favorably impressed with the party’s guide, Marek, whom he learned worked summers so he could continue his education.  His mother had taken a position as an office worker to add to the fund for her son’s education.


Marek, now 26, had decided that he wanted to study Psychiatry because of his intense interest in people and their problems.  This came out in his conversations with Merriam, who told him, of the excellent reputation that the University of Wisconsin has in this field.  Merriam volunteered to do what he could to bring him to the United States to study.  Trips to the Polish Consulate in Chicago, to the University of Wisconsin and the many letters required to obtain a visa followed for Merriam, but Dr. Hann finally arrived in July for what he hoped will be three years of study at the UW.  He studied six months to prepare for the one-day test given by the educational council for foreign medical graduates, which he took and passed in Washington, DC, shortly after arriving in this country.


As a youth in Poland, Marek enjoyed a variety of outdoor activities with friends; and almost always with his best friend, Dr. Janusz Gorzynski, who also immigrated from Poland and lives in New York City, also a psychiatrist.  Marek enjoyed sailing, skiing, and hiking in the mountains.  He also had an early spirit of enterprise, collecting and selling stamps and coins.  He also enjoyed summers as an “extra” when performances came to Warsaw.  There were some musicals that lasted for years.  Marek was awarded Diploma of Physician from the Medical Academy of Warsaw on May 9, 1963.  He carried out at the II Clinic of Internal Medicine, post graduate Medical School in Warsaw, a 6-month internship in Internal Medicine from August to January 19, 1964.  He was given many glowing letters of recommendation, that included that he is most capable, conscientious, punctual, enterprising, self-reliant, laborious and an ambitious worker, Marek gained respect of superiors, colleagues, and subordinates as well.   His post-graduate training includes Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin Medical School, Madison, WI, Residence in Psychiatry 1965-1968, Fellowship in Child Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin Medical School, 1967-1969, Fellowship in Community Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin Medical School, 1969-1970.  


Marek’s professional experience includes staff Psychiatrist, Columbia County Health Guidance Center, 1968-1972, staff Psychiatrist, Wisconsin Children’s Treatment Center, primary project, 1970-1972, Child Psychiatry Consultant, J. Douglas Singer Zone Center, Rockford, IL, 1970-1972 and Medical Director, Wisconsin Institute of Transactional Analysis, 1975-1979.


Marek worked as an independent contractor in clinics in the Madison area to include Grand Teton Mental Health Consultants, Wisconsin Community Mental Health Clinic, Whitewater, Wisconsin, Janesville Psychiatric, Janesville, Wisconsin, Crossroads, Janesville, Wisconsin, and Prairie Counseling Services, Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. When Marek gained his citizenship to the United States and set-up permanent residence in Madison, he never lost his sense of adventure and being and outdoor enthusiast.  His first big purchase was a sailboat, which he enjoyed with his former wife, Eva (Kraus) Hann, and son, Chris, and daughter, Monica. He had yearly trips to the Boundary Waters with his son Chris, and members of the Kubinski family, family friends.  Marek also did family trips with his daughter, Monica, stepson, Jason, and traveling and seeing the world with his wife, Sonja.  They were married in 1987.  She always enjoyed the smile on his face and twinkle in his eye when she entered the room.   His continuing outdoor pursuits consisted of skiing, backpacking, camping, and hiking in national parks, rafting, canoeing, and kayaking with family and friends.  He was a licensed scuba diver. Marek enjoyed the yearly trip to the Gunsite in Arizona for target shooting.  After camping for 10 years at Peninsula State Park in Door County with Sonja and his stepson, Jason.  Marek found some lots there, while attending a medical workshop.  He called Sonja the same day stating she should come up the next day to look at them because they could be important for the family.  The next day after seeing them Sonja agreed and Marek gave her the job of designing the home there to her specifications.  It has been a favorite place for family and friends to gather over the years.  Marek spent time with the family at Stonecroft Conference Center in the Ozark’s for many years, where he found spiritual inspiration.  He also found this at Midvale Lutheran Church in Madison with family which is a special church home.  Another hobby that Marek and Sonja enjoyed together was collecting art and antiques.  Many weekends were spent at auctions, finding treasures to add to their home on Applewood and stocked Sonja’s antique booth.  Marek and Sonja were members of the Polish Heritage Club of Madison and enjoyed many of its activities throughout the years.  Being raised and influenced by his beloved mother, Marek never forgot the words she said, “Whatever you learn, whatever is in your mind, no one can take away.”  Her skill, intelligence, and love for Marek ensured their survival during and after WWII.  She encouraged him to be a life-long learner.  He was always thinking of his family, sending an article, or sharing an idea that would be helpful.  He was an example to his family that hard work, honesty, and respect for others will always pay off.  He was always present when you spoke to him.  Some were privileged to know his great sense of humor.  He was always proud of being a citizen of the United States.  His skill and caring touched the lives of many patients and their families.  He will stay in the hearts of those forever that knew him, and that the memory of the love and passion he had for his family, faith, and his adopted country carry on. Marek and Sonja made their home in Oakwood in 2017.  Although he had many medical challenges over the years, when someone asked him how he was, his answer was, “Never felt better.”  He then asked how they were.


Marek leaves behind his wife, Sonja; son Chris (Melina) Hann; daughter, Monica (Greg) Ansems, stepson Jason (Nancy)Rutowski, and 8 grandchildren, Alex Hann, Samantha (Eric)Burgoon, Audrey Ansems, Caroline Ansems, Luke Ansems, Jack Ansems, Ryan Rutkowski, and Amelia Rutkowski.  He is further survived by other relatives and friends.


A funeral service will be held for Marek on Saturday, August 26 at 1 pm at OAKWOOD UNIVERSITY WOODS CHAPEL, 6205 Mineral Point Road, with a reception afterwards with food and beverages from 2-4 pm at Oakwoods Nakoma Westmoorland room.   In lieu of flowers, memorials in Marek’s name may be made to Agrace Hospice ( or Oakwood Village (

Cress Funeral & Cremation Service

3610 Speedway Road  Madison

(608) 238-3434

Service Schedule

Past Services

Funeral Service

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Starts at 1:00 pm (Central time)

Oakwood Chapel University Woods

6205 Mineral Point Rd, Madison, WI 53705


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