Donald L. "Don" Reis
June 26, 1933 - December 4, 2007
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Wichmann Funeral Home
537 N. Superior Street
Appleton, WI 54911
920-739-1231 | Map
Thursday 12/6, 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm
St. Mary Catholic Church - Greenville
N2385 Municipal Drive
Greenville, WI
Friday 12/7, 1:30 pm
St. Mary Cemetery - Greenville
N2385 Municipal Dr.
Greenville, WI 54942
(920) 757-6555 | Map
Friday 12/7, 2:30 pm
Wichmann Funeral Home
537 N. Superior Street
Appleton, WI 54911
920-739-1231 | Map

REIS, DONALD L. ‚ÄúDON‚Äù Donald Reis, of Greeville, age 74 years, died unexpectedly on Tuesday, December 4, 2007 at Appleton Medical Center. He was born on June 26, 1933 in Greenville the son of the late Frank and Barbara (Meidl) Reis. On September 1, 1954 he married Petronella ‚ÄúNell‚Äù Vander Zanden in Shiocton. At the…

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Robert J. Vander Zanden left a message on April 6, 2009:
I am very sorry to hear about the death of a very special person in my life. Because I live in South Carolina, I regret that I will be unable to attend Don’s funeral. As a young boy, for several summers I lived with Nell and Don, and those summers were some of the happiest times in my childhood. Because Donnie treated me so well, I once asked my parents if I could stay with them during the winter. I feel fortunate that I was able to talk with Don only last week. I also am glad that I expressed at that time my appreciation to him for teaching me many valuable lessons that I used throughout my business career. One that I related to him caused him to laugh when I told him that I used it several times to teach people on my staff that yelling is not a way to correct performance problems. While driving one of Don’s tractors, I hit a new fence and destroyed about 100 – 150 feet of it. I waited for several hours for Don to yell at me and finally asked him if he was going to yell. His comments were calm and deliberate. “Do you want me to yell? Will yelling make it go back to the way it was? Do you know what you did wrong? So why yell?” Don also taught me what a neighbor was. I was always impressed how he was eager to help any of his neighbors when they needed assistance. He was always the first to respond and I often wondered where the energy came from, considering that he had his own farm to run. Don’s obituary said that he loved to play cards. I loved the rainy days because he would go to the tavern to play cards and he always took me along. He soon learned that I loved Hershey chocolate bars so he would buy them for me. I also begged for a small amount of beer and it was at the age of about 10 when I developed a taste for beer and chocolate. Don had a great sense of humor and always could find the right thing to say when things weren’t going perfectly. Shortly after he lost his first leg, we were at a family picnic and I was asking about how things were going. It was at that moment that someone announced that they were going to have a three-legged race and Don said that he and I could do well if I didn’t mind dragging him along. Don in many different ways taught me several lessons that have enabled me to accomplish things that stretched my self belief. By his believing that I could drive various pieces of farm machinery, even if I was only 9, 10, or 11, he instilled in me the confidence that I could do whatever I wanted to do. For his belief in me and his ability to instill in me self confidence, I will be eternally grateful. Don was like a foster parent to me. He was a man that I respected enormously and a man that will be missed by many more people than his immediate family and me. Although I know that I will miss “Big Don”, whenever I do, I will remember him fondly because of the good times we shared and the life lessons he taught me. Those happy memories will ease the loss that I feel today.
Steven Calhoon left a message on April 6, 2009:
Please accept our condolences on the passing of Don. Everyone at Calhoon Tax and Accounting enjoyed working with him and Nell through the years. Our prayers are with his family at this difficult time.
Harvey & Mary Fenske left a message on April 6, 2009:
I'd just like you to know that a finer brother in-law doesn't exist. Don and Nell were people who set an example for all the people they came in contact with.We'll miss Don, but I get some joy knowing he and Nell are together again. I don't remember a time when someone needed help or something and Don didn't drop his work to help. He had had a sunny disposition and always a joke to tell. I visited him in the hospital many years ago when he was injured in an unloading wagon accident, and was told he would not walk again and he said "I got the feeling it will be the other way" and he farmed for many years always having p[ain but that didn't stop him. He always was optomistic even when he faced losing his leg and then the other one also.
Valerie Young left a message on April 6, 2009:
We will miss you. Valerie
Ginny Wallace left a message on April 6, 2009:
I'm so sorry to hear about the passing of Donnie. I remember so many things about him. I remember his injury when I was a child. Not the details but I remember he was never going to walk and what impressed me more was he never seemed to have a disability or felt sorry for himself.. I never saw him angry never heard words of anger. Like Neil they had a way they smiled and took everything handed with grace. What I remember most is his smile his good grace his calmness. How welcome he always made us feel when we went to visit. How hard he worked and never complained. I was blessed to have an Uncle like him and I will miss him too. Steve, Ginny Wallace
Wichmann Funeral Home & Crematories left a message:
Please accept our deepest condolences for your family's loss.
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