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Leslie F. Huber

April 25, 2018 GMT

Leslie “Les” F. Huber, age 93, of Watertown, passed away Saturday, April 21, 2018.

Les was born on Aug. 8, 1924, to Otto and Edna (Dutcher) Huber. He was raised during the Depression on a small dairy farm near Medford, graduating from Medford High School in 1942. He was the first in his family to attend college, putting himself through UW-Madison working various jobs, graduating in 1949 with a degree in agricultural education. Les credited his 4-H experience from age 10-18 as having “set the course for my future professional career.” In 1952, when he and Ellen Brooks met in Monroe, the course for his future family life was set.

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Les’ first job after college was as the agricultural instructor for veterans on the Farm Training Program at the Rib Lake High School from 1949-1952. In 1952 he was hired in Monroe as the UW-Extension 4-H club agent for Green County. This is where he met Ellen Brooks, an RN working as a Monroe County school nurse. He and Ellen married on May 9, 1953, at St. Victor’s Catholic Church in Monroe. In 1954 he and Ellen moved to Wausau, when he began employment in the Marathon County Extension as a farm management agent, a role he continued in Dodge and Jefferson counties until his retirement in 1984. He described these as the most rewarding years of his career. In addition to numerous agribusiness accomplishments that were adopted into practice through the UW System and the Midwest, he raised a family; was active in the community; created, owned and operated CW Farm Market and CW Christmas Trees from 1970 till 2016; and completed a master’s degree in agricultural economics in 1977, which led to a promotion at UW-Madison to the academic rank of professor in 1979.

Les was active in Watertown through the Lions Club, having first joined in 1958 while living in Wausau, and at St. Henry’s Catholic Church, as well as being a 4-H and Scout leader in earlier years.

He always enjoyed grouse hunting, deer hunting and for many years, annual fishing trips to Canada. Following his 1984 retirement, Les and Ellen began a 25-year tradition of spending two months every winter in Laughlin, Nevada. In 2009, he and his sons developed an annual tradition of a weekend, or two, to Laughlin, the last being in February. Les and Ellen also traveled to Alaska, Hawaii and Ireland. In 2000, Les was delighted to build a family cottage on Spirit Lake, near Rib Lake, where he enjoyed walleye fishing, side trips to the Lake of the Torches and time with his family.

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Another goal that Les met was the development of several subdivisions, projects he started at the age of 80. A goal he did not meet was outliving his recently renewed driver’s license. In his own words, he lived quite a life.

Les is survived by his six children: Lynn Huber (Doug Simmons) of Port Orange, Florida, Gregory Huber of Wausau, Lori (Bruce) Wagner of Watertown, Gary Huber of Columbus, Grant (Jolene) Huber of Madison and Lisa Huber of Custer; seven grandchildren: P.J., Jamie, Belinda, Megan, Chloe, Greta and Grace; and eight great-grandchildren.

He was predeceased by his siblings Lela Bokath, Harold Huber, Leona Tomandl, Pearl Dawson and Irene Werner; his wife Ellen in 2012; his grandson Kevin Wagner in 2015; and son-in-law Bill Klish in 2015.

Friends may call at Schmutzler-Vick Funeral Home & Cremation Service on Friday from 5 to 7:30 p.m. A Mass of Christian burial will be held Saturday at St. Henry’s Catholic Church, with the Rev. Patrick Wendler officiating, at 11 a.m. A visitation will be held at the church from 10 a.m. until the time of the service. Burial will follow the service at St. Bernard’s Cemetery.

Online condolences may be sent at www.watertownwifuneralhome.com.

Schmutzler-Vick Funeral Home & Cremation Service

500 Welsh Road Watertown

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