Patrick Steven Plunkett, 82, of Wausau passed away on August 12th under the care of Aspirus Hospice at Athenian Assisted Living in Athens. He bravely fought an incurable blood cancer for three years.
Patrick was born on January 9, 1941, to Clifford and Elvera Plunkett in Wausau, Wisconsin. He married Mary Kluetz on March 20, 1965. Mary preceded him in death in 2019.
Pat attended John Marshall Elementary School and grew up on the Southeast side of Wausau. Pat graduated from Wausau High School in 1959. Patrick had a keen mind for calculating numbers, and design. He enrolled in the Engineering program at UWMC after high school. In 1960 he began his studies at NTC graduating with a degree in Machine Design and Electronics in 1962. He worked for Barber-Coleman in Rockford, IL until he joined the U.S. Army Reserves in 1964. He proudly served six years as a combat engineer, being honorably discharged in 1970. After his discharge from the Army, he gained employment at Drott/JI Case as a draftsman and worked himself up the ladder to manufacturing engineer. In 1984, he joined the team at Greenheck Fan Corporation as Senior Manufacturing engineer, working in all phases of product manufacturing until he retired in 2008.
Throughout Pat’s career, he was passionate about learning and advancing his skills by taking numerous night courses at NTC including advanced welding, machine shop and laser techniques. Patrick was proud of the fact that he was an adjunct instructor at NTC and also served on their advisory committee for welding and electromechanical programs for 30 years.
Pat was a lifelong “gearhead” and enjoyed restoring English sports cars. He also enjoyed biking and cross-country skiing for nearly 50 years. In 1998, Pat “accidentally” found his passion for the world of visual art. He was at home, “in his shop”, working on resolving a work-related welding problem when his first metal abstract sculpture was created. Patrick had found his true passion in becoming an abstract artist. His collection of art includes numerous abstract and semi abstract sculptures and paintings. Patrick’s proudest accomplishment was the “Peace” sculpture that he designed and built with Mostafa Saleh of Cairo, Egypt. It was Mr. Saleh’s vision and dream, which Pat made come true. The sculpture was unveiled in 2009 and stands in Whitewater Park in Wausau. Patrick was admired and respected in the art world with his art displayed in galleries throughout North Central Wisconsin and sold throughout the United States. Pat found his voice in his art and spoke profoundly through each and every piece. Patrick placed in a number of competitive exhibitions while having a number of “Featured Artist Shows”. He was a member of the Wisconsin Visual Artists Guild, Antigo Visual Artists, the Q Gallery of Stevens Point, Wisconsin Artists Association, and the Wisconsin Valley Artists Association.
Patrick was a kind, generous, loyal, strong-willed man and loved by many. He was clever and full to the brim with knowledge gained through all his life experiences...he could fix or build anything. Though Pat came from a very small family, he had numerous friends and neighbors whom he treated and loved as family. You know who you are.
Pat is survived by Sue Harris, sister-in-law; Ken Klug, brother in law; nieces Lisa Nowicki (Greg) and Sara Agamaite (Mike); nephews Karl Kluetz and Erik Kluetz (Estreitta); great nieces and nephews Anna, Collin, Carson, Shannon, Jasmine, Jonah and Anton.
Pat is predeceased by his wife, Mary, Judy Klug (sister-in-law) and Michael Kluetz (brother-in-law).
Our family would like to recognize and thank Pat’s many neighbors and friends that loved, helped and looked out for Pat these past couple years. There are many of you, but we especially want to thank Blaine and Sue, Randy and Sue and his dear friend Mike Gilles who visited him often. Also, thank you Chandra for your friendship and sharing your love of art with Pat.
Patrick’s family would like to extend their gratitude to Dr. Peterson and the wonderful staff at the Aspirus Cancer Center in Wausau for their genuine care for Pat these past three years.
Funeral services will be held at St. John Lutheran Church, Village of Maine, on Monday, August 28. Visitation will be from 9:00 am-11:00 am with the service at 11:00 am. Pastor Maggie Westaby will preside.
If so desired, memorials may be directed to St. John Lutheran Church in the Village of Maine.