Obituary

Thomas Fritsche
May 29, 1956 - August 3, 2020

Thomas Fritsche

Thomas Fritsche
May 29, 1956 - Aug 3, 2020

Thomas Fritsche
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Thomas Fritsche, of Antigo, died Monday, August 3, 2020, at Aspirus Wausau Hospital. He was 64 years old. He was born on May 29, 1956, in Medford, WI a son of Arthur and Elaine (Niemuth) Fritsche. He married Susan Hanson on October 18, 1980, in Medford.

He was a graduate of Medford High School and received his Master's Degree from the University of Wisconsin La Crosse.

Tom had a passion for children and education. He enjoyed a 40-year career as a school psychologist for the Unified School District of Antigo.

He was a member of Calvary Lutheran Church and the Jump River Gun Club.

Tom enjoyed hunting, fishing and golfing. He was an avid Green Bay Packer fan and enjoyed time at Lake of the Pines. He cherished time spent with his children and grandchildren.

Survivors include his wife Susan; two sons, Luke (Alyssa) Fritsche of Roberts and Joshua (Ashley) Fritsche of Hatley; four grandchildren, Owen Matzek, Will Fritsche, Noa and Isla Fritsche; his mother, Elaine Fritsche of Medford; a brother, Steven (Carolyn Wood) Fritsche of Milwaukee; a sister-in-law, Shirley Fritsche of Wausau; father-in-law, Lester Hanson of Medford; and a brother-in-law, Steven (Marianne) Hanson of Medford. He is also survived by nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many friends.

He was preceded in death by his father, Arthur Fritsche; mother-in-law, Sheila Hanson; and brother, Alan Fritsche.

A memorial service will be held on Friday, August 7, 2020, at 6 p.m. outside at the Bradley Funeral Home. Visitation will be outside on Friday from 4 to 6 p.m. at the funeral home.

Those attending the visitation and service are encouraged to wear a mask.

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Tom Schraufnagel on Aug 11, 2020

I just was notified of Tom's death. I am deeply saddened by his passing and offer my deepest sympathy to family and friends. He was a great college roommate and friend. I am certain he positively helped shaped the lives of many students. Tom Schraufnagel

Mark & Deb Black on Aug 9, 2020

Sue,
Sending our deepest sympathy to you and the Boy's. Was so sorry to hear of Tom's passing. Treasure all of the wonderful memories. Will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.
Mark & Deb Black

Lawrence Haugen on Aug 7, 2020

Lawrence Haugen on Aug 7, 2020

remembering

Myra Nye on Aug 6, 2020

I worked with Tom at River Grove . I was the kindergarten teacher and my room was right next to where he worked with students. We had nicknames for each other when we discovered we grew up in the same part of the state-o ly around 15 miles apart. I called him "Little Black" and I was "Chelsea". We had a great many laughs. He was a lot of fun and Imknow, too, how much he enjoyed working with students and was very compassionate with them and their parents. God bless Tom.

Karleen Kemp on Aug 6, 2020

As a speech therapist with the Antigo School District, I have had the privilege and honor of working with Tom for several years. As others have already said, he was kind, compassionate, funny, and a great listener. Tom taught me the importance of using my "voice" to stand up for children and to put their needs above all else. He will forever be an "honorary speechie" and will be missed by all.

Carol (Decker) Day on Aug 6, 2020

My deepest sympathy to all of Tom’s family. Tom was one of many, many cousins within the Fritsche family. My mother was his Aunt Arlene (Fritsche) Decker. We are so sad to learn of his death and the extreme loss to those who loved him so dearly. May you find comfort among those who surround your family during the days ahead. Carol (Decker) Day

Bradley Funeral Home on Aug 6, 2020

+52

Jessica Olson on Aug 6, 2020

Lisa Peaslee on Aug 6, 2020

Dear Sue, Luke, Josh, and families;
We are so very sorry for this unimaginable loss in your lives. In reading others’ tributes, it’s true confirmation that Tom had such a vast and lasting impact on so many lives. From our grad school days back in LaCrosse to many years as friends and colleagues in Antigo, Tom’s humor (and easy laugh), professionalism, compassion, and friendship were always apparent. When we all moved to Antigo for Tom & Tom to become school psychs in the district, Tom was the only person we knew in town. We needed a babysitter for 4-mo-old Kristin & Tom volunteered! He was such a trooper — single guy with a screaming baby! We so appreciated his willingness to help! We will miss him. We are praying for all of you and I’m sending a huge hug across the miles to you, Sue.
💜🙏 Lisa & Tom

Nadene Stegall on Aug 6, 2020

Dear Sue & family, I'm so sorry to hear of Tom's passing our sons Dustin & Luke went to East Elementary together & Tom was our oldest son John C. Psychologist many years ago, he was such a great man. Our John C. passed away in 2003 so it will be special when they meet again in Heaven. Love & Hugs to all. Nadene & John Stegall Lakewood WI

Dave Hickman on Aug 6, 2020

I am sorry to hear of Tom’s passing. I did not know him very well but any time we passed in the halls at the middle school he was always very friendly and courteous!

Dave Hickman

Lisa Menting on Aug 6, 2020

I am so sorry for your loss (and ours also). He was so awesome. He will be missed.
Lisa Menting (an IA @ North)

Susan Larson on Aug 6, 2020

Sue and Family,
I was very sad to learn that Tom had died. I’m one of the speech therapists who was lucky in my career to have learned from Tom. He went above and beyond in his work, especially with evaluations; he never left anything undone, even when he completed more than 100 evaluations in a year. Tom was honest, kind, and treated all students with respect and empathy. He had high expectations for students and highlighted their strengths. I’ve worked in a number of districts but none have had the caliber of special educators that were in Antigo- Tom contributed with great leadership, integrity and professionalism. May peace be with you.
Susan (gress) Larson

Dave Hickman on Aug 5, 2020

I am sorry to hear of Tom’s passing. I did not know him very well but any time we passed in the halls at the middle school he was always very friendly and courteous!

Dave Hickman

Lori Leiterman on Aug 5, 2020

Sue and Family,
So very sorry to hear! Tom was such a kind - compassionate person and educator. He was a great role model to the young children. I remember my son wanting to wear a shirt and tie for his school pictures just like Mr Fritsche did. He was so helpful both to parents and children - even after he retired. Thoughts and prayers are with you! Steve and Lori Leiterman

Tom Beattie on Aug 5, 2020

Sue,
My prayers go out to you and your family. Tom was one of the most gracious giving people that I knew. I remember when I first came to Antigo and worked with him at East Elementary, we loved talking about fishing and joking around in the hallways. I will miss him greatly.
God bless,
Tom Beattie

Jeff Hemer on Aug 5, 2020

Sue,
I am so sorry to hear of Tom's passing. As a MSHS classmate, we had some good times from the past. The last time I spoke to Tom, he was telling me how proud of his family he was. Great guy, he will be missed. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family -
Jeff Hemer

Debbie and Tom Elst on Aug 5, 2020

Our deepest sympathy Sue, from Tom and Deb from 3jokers, your in our thoughts and prayers!

Christine Peloquin on Aug 4, 2020

I worked with Tom at East Elementary school for several years. He was the kindest, sweetest man; he loved children and loved his job. He treated everyone with the utmost respect, and he had a great sense of humor. I remember one time he came into our classroom, and there was several of us staff in the room. We noticed that his "fly" was down, and we were trying to figure out a way to tell him without embarrassing him. Finally one of us just outright told him, and he just zipped it back up and made some joke about it, and we all just laughed!! We all loved it when he was around. He will be so missed.....

Stephanie Wilding on Aug 4, 2020

Tom was knowledgeable and supported of all the students I worked with at East Elementary. I learned a tremendous amount from him, but one of my favorite memories was a last day of school water fight amongst staff. The floors of the building were so wet our principal fell as she turned the corner. Tom laughed about that for years. He will be missed but always remembered. Stephanie Wilding

Michelle Arlen on Aug 4, 2020

Tom was the best and made everyone around him feel so important. I remember being one of his helpers for Special Olympics 35 years ago and when I found myself back in Antigo, he had to bring me to his office one day to show me a newspaper picture of all the athletes with us in Stevens Point. He talked about stories years before when I was just a kid. I couldn’t believe he would remember such things. He was a professional in his job. Always advocating for the students and going the extra mile. We’ll miss you Tom!

Christina Berens on Aug 4, 2020

Sue and family.
I am so saddened by the news of Tom passing. He was by far the most significant influential person in my career. Thank goodness he was my mentor 19 years ago and has continued through the years. Everyone is right. He had the best personality and smile always on his face. His best advice to me when moving on was to “always leave a place better than you found it.” I believe Tom lived by this statement daily and has left us all better than he found us. His guidance and advice will be so missed.

Courtney Burger on Aug 4, 2020

Tom was a mentor to me throughout my entire career. I learned so much from watching him and would not be the teacher I am today without his advice and words of wisdom. He had such an amazing presence with everyone he encountered and just made you feel like things were going to be OK. He would just beam when he told us about his amazing family and grandchildren. He was so proud of you all. My thoughts are prayers are with you at this difficult time.

Pam McAuly on Aug 4, 2020

I’m so sorry for your loss. Tom always made me smile when he walked through the middle school office! He always had a kind word to say! He was one of the gentlest, kindest men I knew. He will be missed dearly. Prayers to your family!

Meagan Geske on Aug 4, 2020

Tom was a very generous and caring person. I will always be grateful to Tom for everything he has done to help me through my first year of teaching, and the conversations and advice he had given me. Tom will be greatly missed.

Andi Gretzinger on Aug 4, 2020

CandleTom was a pleasure to work with. He was kind, giving and thoughtful. I will be forever grateful for his generosity that made a huge impact on my year just out of the goodness of his heart. He was an amazing person and will be missed.

Jeanne and Jim Peters, Platteville,WI on Aug 4, 2020

Sue, family and friends-- So sorry to read of Tom's death. Tom always had a gentle way to work with parents, stiudents, special olympians, and even us teachers/school staff. He will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers. Jeanne and Jim Peters.

Andi Gretzinger on Aug 4, 2020

CandleTom was an amazing man to work with. He was kind, giving and thoughtful. I am so thankful for his generosity when we worked closely in 2017. He made a huge difference in my year out of the goodness of his heart. He will be missed!

Sandra Thorson on Aug 4, 2020

I was one of Tommy's "speechies" as he called us. It was a privilege to work with him. Tom was always compassionate and well prepared for all of our special education meetings. He was a true professional! Tom will be truly missed by everyone that had the honor of working with him. Rest in peace dear friend.
Caringly,
Sandy Thorson

Traci Smith on Aug 4, 2020

Tom put a smile on everyone's face the moment he walked into a room. He could hold wonderful conversations, advocate for what is best for students, listen to everyone, and tell the best jokes. Everyone could walk away feeling relaxed after spending time with Tom. What an amazing man!! One in a million!

Jayne zelazoski on Aug 4, 2020

Sue and boys....i am very sorry to hear of Tom's passing. My sincere sympathy... .he was one of the best

Kathy Kloes on Aug 4, 2020

Tom was such an advocate for the children of the community and school district. He was a true champion for our youth. He was 1 in a million and will be missed.

Mary Jarek on Aug 4, 2020

CandleI remember so many memories of coaching Special Olympics with Tom. He was loved by all the athletes and coaches alike. You could always count on a smile and encouraging word when working with Tom. I always enjoyed working with Tom over the years. He will be missed.

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Aug
7
Friday
Bradley Funeral Home
1550 Neva Road
Antigo, Wisconsin 54409
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM


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Aug
7
Friday
Bradley Funeral Home
1550 Neva Road
Antigo, Wisconsin 54409
6:00 PM


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