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1941 Richard 2023

Richard Hegge

March 4, 1941 — April 7, 2023

Town of Medina

MADISON- Richard Hegge, passed away peacefully on April 7, 2023.  He was born on March 4, 1941 in Madison, Wisconsin at St. Mary’s hospital to John J. Hegge and Bernadine Briggs Hegge.  

Richard was a Sergeant in the Army from 1962-1965 in Strasburg, Germany where he was in charge of the maintenance of tanks & other army vehicles.  While on active duty, Richard met Silvia Mueller and later they were united in marriage on October 29, 1964 in Idar-Oberstein, Germany.   In June of 1965, they relocated back to Madison, Wisconsin to begin their life together and have a family

Interesting memories include the time Dad & Mom rode their Harley to northern Wisconsin with friends during a rainstorm & ended up having about a gallon of water in each boot.  The time when the ice they were standing on broke free & started floating away from the shore, & the times Dad spent with Mike working on cars & golfing, and finally the times he spent fishing, hunting elk, deer, & pheasants in the Cascade mountains of the state of Washington & in Wisconsin with his friends.

Growing up, Richard and his brother John were a force to be reckoned with & definitely were chalked with personality. Some of the stories we heard that they did or “allegedly” did were quite interesting.  Dad loved his brother.  We can only imagine the ruckus they are going to cause now that they are back together and are finally at peace.  

Richard enjoyed mowing, being in his garage, tinkering with everything and anything, making jewelry, and in general just making and fixing things that most people didn’t have the patience for or think could be created or fixed.  Dad was definitely “MacGyvering” things way before the show MacGyver came out.  In addition to the above, dad had an unbelievable talent for knowing exactly where everything was in his garage despite the items not being housed in the usual place.  Except of course for his 4 elusive sets of snowmobile boots that evaded him to the very end 🙂.

As a parent, ball games were a huge part of his life.  He was always there for Suzanne and Andrea’s games.  He was often seen with a video recorder in hand.  After the games were over he would go home and rewatch them.  He loved to coach from the sidelines and was active in sharing his opinions about the referees and how his daughters should be performing.  He did not sugar coat anything & we can still hear him clear as day yelling “Come on Ref!” 

Nothing made him more excited and proud than being a Grandpa.  Richard and Silvia were known in the community as “the baby stalkers” who just seemed to often know where their grandsons were and would quite frequently just “run into them” at various events.  We often wondered if our parents had a tracking device attached to their grandsons.  Richard loved attending Jordon and Mitchell’s events and would ride for hours to be there despite the cold, the heat, and the long walks to get to the location.  He was so very proud of them and just wanted to be there to watch & support them.  We also knew that he really loved concession stands and the standing joke was that the moment he arrived at an event you could watch his eyes scanning the facility for the concession stand……Dad always loved a good brat!  

Prior to falling ill, Richard & Silvia visited their oldest daughter’s family in Georgia where they went sightseeing in north Georgia, and on several occasions visited a quaint little German town called Helen tucked in the north Georgia Mountains which is known for its great food.  In 2001, dad came to Suzanne’s rescue when Robert’s job required him to be in Michigan the day after they moved into their new home & she needed someone to watch Austin who was about 18 months old at the time as she unpacked everything.  Due to several knee & back surgeries, Richard wasn’t able to walk very fast.  On dad’s first walk with Austin outside, the little guy got away from him, but no worries as Dad solved that problem by hooking the dog’s leash to Austin’s clothing on all future walks.  Problem solved.

Richard & Silvia also spent time visiting the Atlanta Aquarium, Stone Mountain Georgia, Savannah Georgia, & Hilton Head in South Carolina where they were able to spend time with their grandson Austin as they enjoyed tours of the areas, the beautiful views, the beach, great food, picnics, & visiting the lighthouses.  When Austin was 12, Richard & Silvia traveled by train to New York to watch & support Austin as he played various games & events in Cooperstown.

Richard is survived by his wife Silvia, daughters Suzanne (Robert) Cross and Andrea (Rosario) Gomez. He adored his grandsons Austin Cross, Jordon & Mitchell Gomez. He held a special place in his heart for his nieces Shelley (Rusty) Cline and Angela Hegge. And let us not forget Schnucky & Sammy, the two cats that wiggled their way into Richard’s heart & adopted Richard & Silvia as their parents.  Schnucky held a very special place in Richard’s heart & continued to give extra attention and joy to Richard even as dementia took so many other things from Richard.

Richard was preceded in death by his brother John Hegge & his nephew Jack Hegge. 

Our family would like to thank all of the wonderful people in his life that were there for him & Silvia over the years.  When Richard and Silvia attended anything related to school and sports events, there were countless people who helped in whatever way they could to make it easier for him to be there.  Over the years so many people would check in and ask about how he was doing and truly showed their care and concern for him.  Thank you to everyone for keeping Richard and our family in your thoughts and prayers during this time and for taking the time to reach out to us to let us know you were there for us.  Words cannot convey how much your prayers & well wishes have meant to our family at this time and how much comfort it has given us.  We have been truly blessed to have been surrounded by such wonderful people.  

Thank you to Rainbow Hospice Organization for all of the support they gave Richard & our family.  They brought us hope in caring for him when things were feeling hopeless, overwhelming, & so very challenging.  

Thank you to the Wildwood Clinic for the time you took to help and support Richard & Silvia as the disease rapidly progressed in the end.

Thank you to the Marshall Fire Department, Marshall EMS, as well as other local EMS/transport organizations for all of their help with getting Richard safely to the hospital on the many occasions that we weren’t capable of doing so.  It definitely takes a village to deal with the debilitating disease of dementia as no family member is physically or mentally capable of dealing with the disease on his or her own.   

Thank you to all of the amazing nurses and doctors at St. Mary’s for the unconditional care and support for him over the past few years and especially the last two months.  

Thank you to Cress Funeral Home, especially Christine M. in Sun Prairie for her help and genuine care for our family during this very difficult time.  

A private family service was held on April 12, 2023 at Cress Funeral Home in Sun Prairie.  

Below we have provided important information regarding dementia & associations that  are helping to fight dementia by increasing the support network for families who have loved ones with this devastating & tragic disease.   

Cress Funeral Service-- Sun Prairie

608-837-9054

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