In lieu of flowers, please consider making donations to the
Salvation Army or the Waukesha food pantry.
WILLIAM JOHN “BILL” LUBITZ, left a world of pain and restraints and entered into the restoring arms of Jesus on 20 March 2022 after 87 years of life here, the last of which was spent battling liver cancer. Soulmate, husband and best friend of Jeanette for 36.5 years. Father of Cynthia (Robert) Stringer, William O. (Michele) Lubitz, Charles S. Lubitz, Michelle (James) Weide, and Matthew (Deanna Hupe) Lubitz. Grandpa/Papa to Michael Hughes, Benjamin Lubitz, Charles A. Lubitz, Denise (Gage) Lammers, Jessica (Brandon) Cichanofsky, Sabastion Weide, and Zoe Dakin. Great Grandpa to Aurora Horbatiuk. Mentor/friend to Matthew (Linda) Planning and Kelly Possehl. Bill had no siblings but considered Virginia (Ron) Lee and Jane Hansen to be as close. Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Irene Wescott Hawkins, and Charlie Hawkins. Bill’s birth father, William Daniel Lubitz, passed away before Bill was born.
Bill was a proud member of the United States Navy, trading away a ‘cush’ job on a carrier, and electing to sail on a destroyer. He enjoyed regaling everyone about life on board ship, and occasionally would talk about climbing the mast of the ship to repair the radar in a typhoon.
Bill was an Electronics Engineer and worked in military ordnance and aerospace engineering prior to ending his very long career working at Harley Davidson. He was on the ground floor of transistor development while at GE – Pittsfield, MA where he worked on guidance systems for military applications. He worked at NWL Control Systems designing guidance systems, stabilizing systems for tanks, and the black box system for the AV-8B Harrier. When he retired at age 55, he began a new career at Harley Davidson, developing shielding for the delicate electronics, and testing methods. As with many engineers, when he retired from Harley Davidson, he simply moved his ‘lab’ home!
But Bill had many other interests as well! He was a model railroader and had been from a very young age. He was hired by a hobby shop in La Grange, IL, to build a display in their front window, just across from the railroad. He chuckled when he told this story, because he also was fired from this job when the owner found out he was only 15. He often spoke about his dad giving him a piece of plywood to build his first railroad. And, anyone new coming to the house in Wisconsin, was always initiated by giving them a tour of the impressive railroad display, spanning almost the whole length of the basement!
In addition to model railroading, Bill was an experienced builder of Radio Controlled aircraft. He would fly RC planes when he lived in Pittsfield and enjoyed sharing this time with Cynthia and William O. He and Matthew would fly their planes at an airfield in Oconomowoc. He loved to watch Matthew fly, speaking proudly of his skill.
He was also an Amateur Radio enthusiast, like the uncle who helped inspire his interest in engineering, and was licensed as “W9EMC”.
He loved woodworking and built furniture for his young family when he was living in Pittsfield, MA. One of those early pieces, an end table, is still in use today! He continued building furniture and just recently helped his grandson, Charles, build a piece of furniture of his own.
Everything Bill did, he did to excellence – including his years with Boy Scout Troop 265 in Galesburg, MI, ballroom dancing with Amanda Wolf Kovach, building both a canoe and a rowing boat (including the paddles and oars), developing a deep appreciation of fine wines, making sourdough bread, documenting the genealogy of his family, taking an advanced shooter course at a local pistol range when he was almost 80 (a hobby he and Son in Law, James enjoyed, together), and just living life well! He walked 3 miles/day up to the last year of his life. And, prior to that, had done many longer hikes, an interest he and son, Charles S. shared. He was not afraid of technology at all, and enjoyed Skyping with his sons Charles S. Lubitz and William O. Lubitz, and his grandson Ben. He did prefer his Nokia flip phone to his iPhone, but that is just because he used to like to flip it open and answer, “Kirk, here!”
As “Papa,” he was known for his “growly-hugs”, love of Wednesdays, and happiness when a certain springer spaniel (and his person!) came to see him. He also loved being able to see his granddaughters, Jessica, and Denise at their weddings, last year. Even though he was not feeling well, it was important to him to be there for those events. He always attended any band concerts, plays, and graduations that he was able to for all the grandkids.
Bill was a loving husband who shared his life well with Jeanette. He would tell anyone who listened about how talented and creative she is. He loved her deeply and was supportive of her hobbies and endeavors. One of the many things they enjoyed working on together in the shop was wood bowl turning, something that combined his love of woodworking and her creativity. They also shared a passion for lifelong learning and for traveling.
As daughter, Michelle aptly put it, “His was an example of a life well lived.” We miss your presence here but rejoice that you are well and whole in the presence of Jesus.
Visitation will be on April 30, 2022 (which would have been his 88th birthday), from 10:00 AM to 11:45 AM. Service following at 12:00 PM. by Pastor Silvia Jeronimo. Visitation and service will be held at Krause Funeral Home, 21600 West Capitol Drive, Brookfield, Wisconsin.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making donations to the Salvation Army or the Waukesha food pantry.