Donald Patrick Kern

March 12, 2021


Donald Patrick "Pat" Kern, 81, of Eau Claire, WI passed away on March 12, 2021 at Oakwood Health Services in Altoona, WI under the care of St. Croix Hospice.

Pat was born in Willmar, MN on August 14, 1939, to William and Katherine (Fury) Kern, attending school in both Olivia, MN and Montevideo, MN where he graduated from Montevideo High School in 1957. He then attended and played football at South Dakota State University in Brookings, SD where he received his degree in Civil Engineering in 1962.

It was at college that he met his future wife, Marguerite, at the family "famous" Dairy Queen in Brookings, SD. They were married on January 27, 1962 in Brookings, South Dakota. After their wedding they moved to Eau Claire, Wisconsin for Pat's work, first at Fehr Concrete as a design engineer and manager, and later as a bridge inspector at the Wisconsin Department of Transportation from where he retired in 2007. Together they raised six children: Jeff, Greg, Bill, Rich, John, and Kelly, and, later, welcomed eighteen grandchildren. He was always busy over the years at his children's and grandchildren's events, and he especially loved watching his sons and grandsons play football, attending both games and practices regularly. Pat also loved fishing, hunting, and being outdoors. He was an avid reader, loved listening to classical music, and had large collections of both books and vinyl records. He will always be remembered as a loving father and grandfather.

Pat will be dearly missed by his loving wife of 59 years, Marguerite; five sons, Jeff (Shelly) Kern of Eau Claire, WI, Greg (Kelly) Kern of Braham, MN, Bill (Trish) Kern of Sun Prairie, WI, Rich (Susan) Kern of Eau Claire, WI, John (Shawna) Kern of Troy, OH; one daughter, Kelly (Jeremy) Forster of Chippewa Falls; eighteen grandchildren: Gunnar, Jaret, Ariel, Marianna, Trevor and Therese Kern; Ashley, Kyle, and Jacob Kern; Katie and Austin Kern; Nolan, Jack, and Grace Kern; Kendra and Alyssa Kern; Sophia and Abby Forster. He is also survived by his brothers, Jim (Polly) Kern, Jack (Kay) Kern, Jerry Kern, Mike Kern, and Dick (Bonnie) Kern, and his sisters, Kathy (John) Radmer and Karen (Brad) Ziemkowski; many nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, William and Katherine Kern; his brother, Robert Kern; and infant grandchild, Kacie.

A funeral service will not be held at this time. A celebration of life will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please offer a helping hand to someone in need, or donate to a favorite charity.

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1405 North Clairemont Avenue, Eau Claire, WI
(715) 834-4456

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Dan Rosolack

March 18, 2021 11:29 AM

Dan Rosolack

Marguerite and Family,

I am so sorry to hear of Pat's passing. I have a lot of  good memories of Pat over the years. Pat hired me at Fehr Concrete in 1967, my first job after being married. Pat was not only my boss and mentor, but a great friend.
We worked in a old tin building next Fehr's office. We had some pretty wild hockey games during our coffee breaks.
Pat liked to have fun and we enjoyed our working years together.
God Bless you and your family.

Dan Rosolack

The Merieux Team

March 18, 2021 7:41 AM

Our warmest condolences to you and your family on the passing of your dad.
The Merieux Team

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Steve Sperry

March 17, 2021 1:27 PM

Jeff and family,

I’m very sorry to hear of your Dad’s passing. I had no opportunity to know him well, except for one brief and meaningful interaction with him – when we told him of my car accident in July 1981 – his words at the time make me think that, while he didn’t suffer fools gladly, he was also calm, patient, kind, and understanding – enviable traits I believe he passed on in abundance to his family. I’ve no doubt he will be missed terribly, but equally so, he’ll remain a presence within you, and will continue to be a part of every family gathering. My wish for you is that the sadness of his departure will, eventually, be filled in equal measure with the happiness of knowing and remembering all that he did and all that he was for all of you.


Steve Sperry

Laura Seymour Reali

March 17, 2021 12:19 PM

We have very fond memories of the days when Pat played softball with my dad and others from Fehr and the architecture firm.  My dad's favorite story about Pat was this: 

During a game at Carson Park, back when the score board had people in it changing the numbers, Pat came up to bat. The guys in the score box knew everybody and had a little fun with them now and then. They did a little cat calling at Pat from the box out in center field. Pat laughed and hollered, "Oh yeah??", then smacked the next pitch out to center field, INTO the score box. As my dad told it, you could hear that ball ricocheting around in the box while Pat circled the bases.  

I remember him as a fun-loving guy and extend deepest sympathy on behalf of my mother and siblings.  

Bruce Eastenson

March 16, 2021 9:25 AM

Jeff & family,
     My condolences in your loss. "Pat" was well liked/respected by all who knew him. Our      time working together at WIDOT will long be remembered as a very positive experience for everyone!!

Bruce Eastenson

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