Fredrich “Fritz” Harvey Johnston, 78, of Mosinee, passed away on Tuesday, March 21, 2023, with his wife and daughters at his side.
Fritz was born on January 20, 1945, to Rose and Raleigh Johnston of Tomahawk, Wisconsin. He graduated from Merrill High School where he excelled in all sports and, later in life, was honored to be a Silver M Club member.
Fritz attended UW Eau Claire on a football scholarship. A talented drummer, he spent a summer during college playing drums in the “Pat Grogan V” band in Texas. He later served in the United States Marine Corps, where he was honorably discharged after completing his service.
It was while working at First American National Bank in Wausau that Fritz met the newest employee in the real estate department. His persistence in dating Carol Ann Staeck paid off because eighteen months later, on July 31, 1971, they were married at the former St. James Catholic Church in Wausau. Thus began their almost 52 years as husband and wife.
Fritz was the greatest Dad to Stacie, Sarah and Katie, always being their biggest cheerleader in life. His love and encouragement always was unconditional. This has followed through with his sons-in-law and his precious grandchildren.
He loved spending time with his family, the road trips both near and far that he and Carol took, old westerns, fishing, the Green Bay Packers, books of all kinds and anything Bigfoot. He could have taught a master class in how to tell bad “dad jokes” and how to weave random trivia into everyday conversation. He was proud to be able to fulfill a long-time dream and take his three oldest granddaughters horseback riding in August 2022 while on a family vacation.
Fritz was steadfast in his faith and was proud to be a 44-year member of St. Paul Catholic Church in Mosinee where he was a member of the Knights of Columbus. He also was proud to be a 32nd Degree Mason.
Fritz retired from Kolbe & Kolbe Millwork and enjoyed several years post-retirement at Lietz’s Convenience Store where he made many friends.
He was pre-deceased by his parents and siblings, including his beloved sister Julie Hockett, his loving in-laws Frank and Mary Staeck, and his best friend, Don Litwin.
Fritz is survived by his wife, Carol, his daughters, and their families: Stacie (Jerry) Peters and their daughters, Lindsay and Merrit, of Big Lake, MN; Sarah (Patrick) Yatchak and their daughters, Gillian and Luisa, of Stillwater, MN; and Katie (Ryan) Walbruch and their children, Quinn and Gabe, of Princeton, MN.
He is further survived by his sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Sharon and Gideon Katzan of Verona, WI as well as his niece, Raquel (Pete) Wasserman and their daughters, Noa and Esta, of Hoboken, NJ.
The family wishes to send special thanks to his dear friends, Dave and Dar Wallenfelsz, Rob, Nicole and Pierceson Kukuczka, and John Lietz for their unwavering love, support and friendship. All of you meant the world to Fritz.
Services will be held on Monday, March 27, 2023, at 11:00 a.m., at St. Paul Catholic Church, Mosinee. The Rev. Aaron Becker will officiate. Burial will take place at St. Paul Cemetery. Visitation will be from 9:30 a.m. until the time of service, all at the church. Beste Funeral Home, Mosinee, is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences can be directed to the family at www.bestefh.com.