Richard B. Van Handel, 86, passed away on Wednesday, October 2, 2019. Richard was born on December 25, 1932 in the Town of Grand Chute to Martin and Mary (Berghuis) Van Handel. He graduated from Appleton Senior High School, Class of 1950. On May 29, 1954, he married Alice Woods at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Appleton, and they recently celebrated 65 years together.
He was born, raised, and lived in the same house his entire life while he worked the family dairy farm. In addition to running the farm, he operated school buses in the Town of Grand Chute, was a member of the Grand Chute Volunteer Fire Department for 32 years, and served as Town Supervisor for 12 years. He was a charter member of St. Thomas More Catholic Church, Appleton, and in his later years, a daily attendee at Mass.
Richard is survived by his wife, Alice; 2 sons: David (Kit) and Gerald (Lori); 3 daughters: Susan (Bruce) Siebers, Celia (Jeff) Engel, and Elizabeth Van Handel. He is survived by 3 grandchildren: Nathan, Adam, and Melanie Van Handel; and 9 step-grandchildren: Jennifer (Kevin) Monahan, Angela Kolosso, Michelle (Jacob) Kolosso-Bruni, Nicole (Florin) Nae, Kelly (Josh) Jansen, Andy (Alisha) Siebers, Andy (Sarah) Engel, Brad (Rachel) Engel, and Kimberlea Engel. He is also survived by step-great-grandchildren: Maddie, Jasmine, Alexis, Eleanor, Vivian, Gabriel, Clara, Collette, Adalynn, Lilli, and Owen. He is further survived by in-laws: Norbert Techlin, Joan and Jule Van Handel, Helen Calmes, Joan Gitter, Pat Woods, and Catherine (Richard) Seidler and many nieces and nephews.
Richard was preceded in death by his parents, his siblings: Robert (Marion), Harold, and Donald Van Handel, Theresa Techlin and Rosemary (Delmar) Schmeichel; and his in-laws: Gertrude (Bernard) Bruening, Mary (Robert) Reichle, Earl (Marie) Woods, Margaret (James) Jenkel, John (Rita) Woods, Frank Calmes, Lawrence Gitter, and James Woods.
A Mass of Christian Burial for Richard will be held on Monday, October 7 at 11:00 am at St. Thomas More Catholic Church, 1810 N McDonald Street, Appleton with Fr. Jack Mullarkey officiating. Family and friends may call at Brettschneider Trettin-Nickel Funeral Home, 606 N. Oneida Street, Appleton on Sunday, October 6 from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm with a prayer service to conclude the evening. Visitation will resume the following day at church from 9:00 am until the time of service. Burial will be at St. Joseph’s Cemetery. A memorial fund will be established.
The family would like to thank St. Paul’s Elder Services for their love, care, and compassion during Richard’s short stay.