Roger D. Patoka
Roger D. Patoka, 58, Plover, died unexpectedly Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017.
He was born Aug. 31, 1959, in Stevens Point, son of the late Maynard and Romona (Wroblewski) Patoka. He grew up in Plover across from the Springville Pond. He graduated from Stevens Point Area Senior High (SPASH) school in 1977. He attended the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point (UWSP) and Mid-State Technical College. He played baseball for the UWSP Pointers, then was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the fourth round in the 1978 winter draft.
He was married to his high school sweetheart, Sharon Iwanski, Feb. 16, 1980, at Newman University Parish in the Sister of St. Joseph Motherhouse Convent Chapel, Stevens Point.
He grew up loving and playing baseball, often being coached by his dad in Little League. He played high school sports and played for the American Legion Post 6 team for four years. He later was an assistant coach for a few years with the Plover Black Sox American Legion baseball team.
His love of sports led him to coach his own sons when they played baseball in Plover Whiting Youth Athletics Little League. He also coached during the traveling season, going on to coach in the Babe Ruth League and also flag football.
He had a love for the outdoors and enjoyed gardening, lawn work, hunting and fishing. His best memories were the annual deer hunting season on the Patoka Family Farm.
He worked for Bob’s Food King while in high school and college before he left to report to the Sarasota Farm Club of the Kansas City Royals. When he returned, he worked for Sentry Insurance in the Security Department, and later for Aramark Uniform Services as a Route Representative until his retirement in 2014.
He entered the world as a “record breaker:” When he was born, he and his mother were pictured in the Stevens Point Journal announcing his birth. He weighed 13 pounds, two ounces and was 23 inches long: the biggest baby born in Portage County, according to the records of St. Michael’s Hospital as of August 1959.
His favorite times were gathering and visiting with family and friends. He enjoyed amusing others with stories and jokes.
He is survived by his wife, Sharon; their two sons, Kyle (Lori), Green Bay, and Kolin (special friend Chelsea Liesch), Stevens Point; six siblings, Sandra (Michael) Pavelski, Brian Patoka, Lori (Tim) Buchkowski, all of Plover, Carol (William) Rudiger, Amherst, Kim (Robert) Lawrence, Minneapolis, Minn., and Jodi (William) Renfrow, Stevens Point; five godchildren; a sister-in-law, Sandra (Iwanski) Filtz; and nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Maynard and Romona Patoka, and his mother- and father-in-law, Gertrude and Alois (Lloyde) Iwanski.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial in Roger’s name will be established at a later date.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Oct. 23, 2017, at Holy Spirit Catholic Church, Stevens Point, with the Rev. Thomas Lindner officiating. Burial will follow in the Guardian Angel Cemetery. Visitation will take place from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 22, at the Pisarski Funeral Home in Stevens Point, and Monday at Holy Spirit Catholic Church from 9:30 a.m. until the start of Mass. A parish rosary will be held at 7 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home.
The Pisarski Funeral Home is honored to be assisting the family. Online condolences may be offered at www.pisarskifuneralhome.com.
The family would like to thank Justin Hunter from the Plover Police Department and Joe Gemza and the Emergency Medical Paramedics who responded, as well as nurse Angela Rhode from Ascension St. Michael’s, and the Pisarski Funeral Home.