up on a farm in rural Shell Lake, a local girl, Jeanne Beardsley, caught his
eye when he exhibited his horse at the County Fair, and in 1968, just a few
days after their wedding, he deployed to a Naval Communications Base in Asmara,
Ethiopia. A year later they met up in Germany, had a whirlwind tour of Europe
with a Eurail Pass, then went on to Ethiopia to complete his duty in the Navy.
Returning to Washburn County, Ron served with the Wisconsin National Guard with
the Spooner Engineer Battalion.
at the Barron County Campus in Rice Lake, followed by Mortuary Science School
at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, started Ron on his career as a
funeral director. From 1978 until 1998, Ron and Jeanne owned the Brown Funeral
Homes in Solon Springs and Minong, then he worked with the Bratley-Nelson staff
whenever they needed him to put on his suit and tie. Connecting with families
that he had served became such a wonderful reason to come to work with the
staff. Sharing the most difficult event of death with someone's family just
never goes away.
Spencer and Lacy, are daughter Tiffany's children, and they live in Rice Lake. Granddaughter Baylee is son Mitch's daughter, they live on part of the family
farm, and Mitch is Director of Public Works for the City of Shell Lake.
Ron is a
member of the American Legion Post #499 in Gordon where he has served as
Commander and is currently Chaplain and Honor Guard Commander. He has been a
president of the Spooner Jaycees and the Solon Springs Lions Club, and he has
served on the boards of the Washburn County Lakes and Rivers Association, the
Minong Town Lakes Committee, and the Minong Flowage Association.
Meals on Wheels from the Minong Senior Center, deer hunting, collecting water
quality data on the lake, kayaking, reading and traveling keep every day