Obit: Stucki, Jacob Calvin (1926 - 2011)


Contact: Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon



Surnames: Stucki, Kuester, Bersch, Bremer, Larson, Pelech, Grether          


----Source: Clark County Press (Neillsville, Clark Co., WI.) September 14, 2011


Stucki, Jacob Calvin (30 November 1926 - 25 August 2011)


Jacob Calvin Stucki, 84, of Galesburg, MI, formerly of Neillsville, died peacefully Aug. 25, 2011, at Cedar Ponds, his rural home in Galesburg, where he lived with his younger daughter and son-in-law.


Jake was born Nov. 30, 1926, on the farm at "the Indian School" in Neillsville, son of the Reverend Benjamin Stucki and Ella Kuester Stucki.  He attended primary school at the Winnebago Indian Mission School, which his father founded.  He recounted this unique part of his life in a brief self-published memoir, "Remembering the Indian School."  He was very pleased by the interest his book received from old friends as well as from fans of Wisconsin local history when it was issued in 2004.


Upon graduation from Neillsville High School, he was immediately accepted into the competitive ‘V-12’ program, which sent promising young men to college in order to prepare them to become naval officers during WWII. When the war ended less than two years later; the GI Bill allowed him to continue his education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he received BS, MS and Ph.D. degrees in biology.  He was united in marriage to Naomi Bersch of Sheboygan, Nov. 24, 1948, with his own father officiating.  They were married for 58 years, until her death in 2007.


After working for three years as a research scientist in Cincinnati, OH, in 1957 he joined the Upjohn Company in Kalamazoo, MI, where he worked until retirement in 1989.  In 1963 he was honored with the founder’s W. E. Upjohn Award.  Dr. Stucki was a research endocrinologist and occupied laboratory and administrative positions in research before being elected vice president in 1981.  He was an active participant in the research and development of several Upjohn products during his 32 years with the company.  At the time of his retirement he was corporate vice president for pharmaceutical research.


During his working years and after his retirement, Dr. Stucki was involved with a number of professional, governmental, industrial and community organizations.  He served on the board of directors of the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, Planned Parenthood of South Central Michigan, The Lift Foundation, the Fontana Concert Society and the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association R&D Section. In each of these organizations he also served as board president.  In 2000, he and his wife were honored with the Kalamazoo Arts Council’s Theodore C. Cooper Distinguished Volunteer Service Award.  He loved music dearly, and had met his wife, Naomi, a professional soloist and choral director, on the basis of their shared passion for music.  Jacob and Naomi sang together for many years in several Kalamazoo are church choirs and community choruses.


Jake enjoyed an astonishing wide variety of interests, from backpacking and downhill skiing to winemaking, gardening and photography.  His upbringing on the farm and at the Indian School provided him with a lifelong appreciation of craftsmanship and the practical ability to build, repair and tinker around the house.  Though he and his wife traveled all over the world, they always enjoyed returning to Wisconsin to visit friends and family in Neillsville, Sheboygan, Madison and at Loon Lake in Shawano.


Jake was preceded in death by his wife; his parents; sisters, Marie Stucki and Esther "Peg" Bremer, and brother William Stucki.


He is survived by his children, Marcia Vera Stucki of Galesburg, Heidi Ellan Stucki (Phillip Larson) of Galesburg, and Jacob Christopher Stucki (Catherine Pelech) of Evanston, IL; grandchildren, Jacob Colin Stucki III, and Calin Catherine Stucki, also of Evanston; brothers, David Stucki of Waunakee and Benjamin Stucki of Floyd, VA; sister, Elizabeth Stucki of Floyd; beloved companion Mary Ann (Trace) Grether of St. Cloud, MN; and numerous nieces and nephews.


In accordance with Jake’s wishes, his body has been cremated. A memorial gathering, at which friends and family may celebrate Jake’s life, will be held at The Park Club in downtown Kalamazoo, MI on Saturday, Oct. 15, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.



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