James Oliver Tracy

James Oliver Tracy

James Oliver Tracy, age 82, of Madison, passed away peacefully at the Ridges of Lodi, on Sunday, June 3, 2012. He was born on June 14, 1929, Flag Day, in Appleton, the son of Oliver and Hilda (Kuchenbecker) Tracy.

He graduated from St. Nazianz Preparatory Academy, in St. Nazianz, and proudly served his country in the Army, stationed in Heidelberg, Germany. He attended the University of Wisconsin- Madison, and worked for 40 years as a sales and marketing professional with the LM Berry Co. and then Ameritech Publishing, motivating and promoting sales professionals in his trademark positive character.

He is remembered fondly by all for his awesome spirit. Jim was a huge sports enthusiast known for backing all of the Wisconsin teams, the Brewers, Bucks, Packers, and especially the Badgers!!! Jim was a board member of the Madison GYRO organization, served as President of the Madison Sales and Marketing Executives organization, President of the Madison Knights of Columbus, and led and participated in many other civic associations. He was a devoted and enthusiastic member of the St. Thomas Aquinas Parish- Madison. He led from the front and was always very engaged in making his impact meaningful and positive in all he did. Jim was a loving son, brother, husband, father, grandfather. He always looked forward to celebrating family occasions and holidays. His mantra was always to be positive in everything. If you ever asked him how he was doing, he would say that he was awesome or dynamic- but that he would get better! He was an avid golfer and lover of music.

Jim is survived by his wife of 57 years, Elaine (Riemer) Tracy; five children, Cheryl Tracy of Lodi, Deborah (Kevin Kochaver) Tracy of Madison, Kristen (Gary) Janzer of Hartford, Michael (Vickie) Tracy of Apex, North Carolina, and Jeff (Kristin) Tracy of Lodi; seven grandchildren, Jennifer and Jessica Janzer of Hartford, Erica and Morgan Tracy of Apex, North Carolina, McKayla, Austin and Collin Tracy of Lodi; and many other family and friends.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Robert “Father Melvin” Tracy, and John Tracy; and by his grandson, Tyler Tracy.

The family wishes to thank the staff and caregivers at the Ridges of Lodi, especially Debby, Terry, Shelly and Maria, and Southern Care Hospice, especially Brittany and Fred, for all their compassionate care and treatment of Jim.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, June 8, 2012, at ST. THOMAS AQUINAS CATHOLIC CHURCH, 602 Everglade Drive, with Msgr. Donn Heiar presiding. A luncheon will follow at the church. A Private committal will be held at Resurrection Catholic Cemetery. A visitation will be held from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday, June 7, 2012, at JOYCE-RYAN FUNERAL HOME, 5701 Odana Road and also from 10:00 a.m. until the time of Mass on Friday at the church.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to be given to the Alzheimer’s Association, P.O. Box 96011, Washington, D.C. 20090-6011, or www.alz.org (A fund has been set up for contributions in memory of James Tracy), or the Tyler Tracy Foundation, www.tylersplace.org.

We remember Jim by his favorite Irish blessing:

May the road rise up to meet you.

May the wind be always at your back…

May the sun shine warm upon your face…

May the rain fall soft upon your fields…

And, until we meet again…

May God Hold you in the palm of His hand.