Doug K. Gronli
OREGON – Doug K. Gronli, age 79, passed away on Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020, after, how his great grandson Dominic explained it, “he reached his last number”.
He was born in Madison, on May 30, 1941, the eldest of six children, to Orvin and Eleanor (Handel) Gronli.
In his early years, Doug was known as a bit of a hell raiser and got into some trouble but following his graduation from Madison West High School in 1959, Doug enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He served during the Cuban Missile Crisis and was honorably discharged in 1964. Doug married Toni R. Pankow in September of 1962. Together they had two children, Brad and Denise. They later divorced but remained life-long friends. He married Jeannie (Wood) Wegner on November 7, 1976 and welcomed her family as his own.
Doug worked construction for many years and had a wide variety of talents. He was known as the guy who could fix anything, guiding many of his family members in using his many tools. He especially enjoyed supervising his daughters on their projects. He loved working on the Fire Safety Crew at Oregon Super Speedway, now known as Madison International Speedway. Doug was instrumental in many of the safety protocols that are still being used today. He loved racing, especially NASCAR and other Stockcar racing. Those who loved him knew not to call during a race!
Doug was a warm hearted, compassionate man who welcomed everyone into the family and made friends with everyone he met. There were not many places he would go where he didn’t know someone. His brother-in-law Thom stated, “he was always so appreciative and respectful of where people might be coming from”.
Doug just celebrated 45 years of sobriety and eight years of smoking cessation, something he was very proud of. When asked what his secret was, he would reply, “Don’t drink and don’t die”. He had become a mentor and friend to so many with these same struggles. Thom also noted that AA has lost a strong advocate and someone who gave back to many people struggling with addiction.
Doug is survived by his brothers, Dan and Don (Gin) Gronli; children, Lori Wegner and her daughters, Courtney and Libby Kiesow, Brad (Eda) Gronli and their children, Christopher (Hannah) and Patrick (Jeanette) Froeschle, and Denise Terrian and her son, Derek (Lauren) Terrian; great-grandchildren, Dominic, Luca, Iyla, Zoe, Rein, Gina, Skyler, and Liam; great-great-grandchildren, Ayla, Kira, and Coraline; along with several nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Jeannie; his former wife and friend, Toni; sisters, Gay Anne and Sally; brother, Dennis; great-granddaughter, Cassandra; sister-in-law, Sharon; and nephew, Ryan.
Because of the current health restrictions, a celebration of Doug’s life will be held later next year when we can appropriately do so.
If you would like to honor his life, please make a donation to St. Jude Children’s Hospital.
All Faiths Funeral & Cremation Services of Madison is assisting the family. Online condolences can be made at www.866allfaiths.com