Kenneth J. Mason passed away on March 12, 2018. He was born on November 17, 1922 in Tigerton, Wisconsin to Frank and Christena (Senn) Mason. He spent his childhood in Rhinelander, graduating from Rhinelander High School. He volunteered for service in the United States Army Air Forces serving in the European Theatre on a B-24 “Liberator” bomber as a radioman and top gunner. He flew 33 missions over Europe including D-Day and received the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal. He completed his service at Truax Field in Madison, Wisconsin as sergeant major of the radio school.
His parents, Frank and Christena (Senn) Mason taught him the value of education, and having earned an honorable discharge; he entered the University of Wisconsin at Madison on the G.I. bill to earn his degree in business and accounting from the University Of Wisconsin School Of Business in 1949. He met (Irma) Doris Eide in Madison where she was a teacher at Randall School; the couple was married in 1946 beginning 65 loving years together.
After graduation, he was employed by the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company, first in Chicago, and later in Elkhart, Indiana and Joliet, Illinois. In 1955, he went into business in Wausau, and with Mel Sims as his partner, operated Mason and Sims Tires for 37 years.
He was a member of First Presbyterian Church for over 60 years and served as an elder, as well as attending Christian service in Eagle River, WI during the summer.
Ken loved the outdoors. He was an avid golfer and shared his love for golf with his wife regularly, playing until he was nearly 90 years old. He also enjoyed tennis, fishing, hunting, reading and traveling. He was active at the American Legion and an Elks Club member for many years.
He is survived by his children: Christy (Charles) Junkerman of Palo Alto, California, Thomas (Bonnie) Mason of Lynchburg, Virginia, Pam (Theodore) Simons of Cary, North Carolina, Stuart Mason of Wausau and James (Angèle) Mason of Taos, New Mexico. He is also survived by his grandchildren: Nicholas (Maude) Junkerman, Hannah Junkerman, Leah (Brad) Virgin, Lance (Annie) Byrd, Meredyth Mason, Corrie Mason, Katie (Justin) Melde; also, six great grandchildren: Alice Junkerman, Jackson, Joshua and Jada-Marie Virgin and Mason and Miles Byrd. He is also survived by his sister-in-law Ruth Mason of Rhinelander and his brother-in-law George Eide of California, as well as many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife Doris, his father Frank and mother Christena, his brothers Eugene “Jim” Mason and Harold Mason and his sister Dorothy Johnson.
Memorial service will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, June 2, 2018 at the First Presbyterian Church, 406 Grant Street, Wausau, WI. The Reverend Joy Nelson-Jeffers will officiate. Visitation will be from 9:30 AM until the time of service. Committal will be at Restlawn Memorial Park with military rites to be rendered by representatives of the US Army and VFW Burns Post #388. Helke Funeral Home will be assisting at the memorial service; you may sign the family guestbook of helke.com.