He lived a remarkable life, quietly impacting and influencing the lives of many others during his more than 95 years. Warren A. Grady was received into the arms of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Saturday, December 14. At the time of his death, Warren, and his wife, Phyllis, were residents of Oak Park Place in Baraboo, Wisconsin, though they also spent 17 years seasonally in Green Valley, Arizona and for the past 50 years spent as much time as they could at their beloved cottage on Townline Lake in Three lakes, Wisconsin.
Born March 3, 1924, Warren was the second of seven children born to Albert and Ethel (Blessing) Grady of Port Washington, Wisconsin. He grew up in Port Washington and briefly in West Bend. He was an outstanding student-athlete, competing in both football and track in addition to being in the National Honor Society. He graduated from Port Washington High School in 1942
Warren enlisted in the Navy on July 1, 1943. He achieved the rank of Lieutenant and served as an officer on the LSM 395 in the Pacific Fleet during WWII. He retired from the Navy on July 2, 1946. After military service, Warren committed himself to furthering his education, graduating with a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. in 1947 and a law degree from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1951.
He married Phyllis Witzlib of Port Washington in 1951, having met while they both sang in the choir at Friedens Evangelical Church. Together they raised 8 children. At his passing, Warren delighted in his growing legacy that included 17 grandchildren and 15 great grandchildren.
Warren served his church, community and state with distinction. He was elected City Attorney in Port Washington in April 1952, and his first of four terms in the Wisconsin State Legislature in November 1952. During the 1957 session of the State Assembly, Warren was chosen to be Majority Floor Leader. One of his accomplishments in the Assembly was helping restructure the state’s court system.
In 1962, Warren Grady was elected Judge in Ozaukee County. Well-respected, he was re-elected to multiple terms, serving 32 years, the longest judicial tenure for any Ozaukee County Judge. During that remarkable career, and in addition to raising a large family, Warren was active in Friedens Church as a Sunday school teacher and choir member. He was a scout leader and was awarded the Silver Beaver Award, the highest honor a scout leader can achieve. He also served the community through participation in American Legion, VFW and Kiwanis.
Warren loved history and traveling. He and Phyllis and family visited sites in 49 of our 50 states. For pleasure he read books by Louis L’Amour and fellow Wisconsinite, Stephen Ambrose. Until recently, Warren carefully read several newspapers a day, though he grew increasingly disappointed in their biased editorializing.
Warren was preceded in death by his parents and his six siblings and his eldest son, Jeffrey. He is survived by his loving wife, of 68 years, Phyllis (Witzlib), daughter-in-law Sandy (Jeffrey) of Madison, WI; son, Kevin (Nancy) of Port Washington; daughter, Susan (Mark) Voll of Bella Vista, AR; daughter, Kim (Alan) Geisthardt of Fond du Lac, WI; son, Thomas (Deona) of Germantown, WI; daughter, Karen (Dave) Stigen of Baraboo, WI; son, Derek of Madison, WI; and son, Michael (Dawn) of Oconomowoc, WI. He is further survived by seventeen grandchildren and fifteen great grandchildren. He often marveled at how many family members turned up at holidays, laughing at what he started - a houseful of love.
Imagining Warren and son, Jeffrey in Jesus’ presence together, his family finds great solace in their faith in God’s grace and His promise of a blessed reunion one day.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 25, 2020, at 11:00 a.m. at Friedens Evangelical Church, 454 N. Milwaukee, St. Port Washington. Family will welcome attenders beginning at 9:00 a.m. If desired, memorials may be directed to Friedens Evangelical Church in Port Washington, WI or Wisconsin Special Olympics.
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