Randall “Randy” Dean Mankowski, age 55, of Wild Rose, passed away Friday evening, December 7, 2018 at his sister’s home under the care of ThedaCare at Home Hospice.
He was born July 23, 1963 in Wild Rose, the son of Thomas and Dorothy (Jenks) Mankowski, and graduated from Wild Rose High School.
He is survived by three brothers and one sister, Steven (Patty) Mankowski, Wild Rose, Cindi (Tom) Gotthart, Wild Rose, Michael (Sue) Mankowski, Oregon, WI, Thomas J. Mankowski, Oregon, WI, and Roger Mankowski, Wild Rose, along with nieces Shalimar Jones, Becky (Matthew) Schubert, and Julie (Nate) Mankowski, nephews: Matthew Mankowski, Jarrett Jones and William Mankowski, great nieces, Tegan, Torrence and Emica Marquez, Violet Jones, Makena Schubert, and great nephew Espn Marquez. Randy was preceded in death by his parents and by his sister, Linda.
If there ever was a person who exemplified an entrepreneur, it was Randy. His talent was endless as he embraced occupations in concrete, roofing, building, engine mechanics, construction and maintenance, public works, operating a restaurant, selling Christmas tress, and perhaps his most famous; “grave digger”. Or as he liked to say “sub-terrainian one-room house builder, thus his license plate STORHB.
Randy did the grave digging, by hand, along with his dad, who started the business in 1962, and eventually took over when Tom retired. He was in charge of digging in more than twenty cemeteries over the years and was known for his precision, speedy and reliable work. Those who knew Randy also knew that as dedicated as he was to work, he also knew how to play and have a great time. Fun included riding motorcycle, ice fishing, camping, loving music, being a bouncer, and partying.
Without a doubt, his greatest asset was his devotion to friends. He was always ready with a hug, a wise-crack, a helping hand, and advice; all of it with a witty sense of humor and a twinkle in his eye.
As his cancer progressed, he was so grateful to all the friends who were there to support him and spend time visiting. Paul and Mary Demler, Larry and Nancy Martin, Mike and Jalyssa Carter, Joe and Sue Swen, Jake Seifert, Clayton Pietch, Spencer Rosin, Jon Armstrong, Danny, Kirby and Mark Jenks, and Dave Hauser, who adopted his beloved dog Sophie, along with so many more, held a special place in his heart.
Our family thanks all of you who were there for him as he suffered through this terrible disease. As we say goodbye, we can call to mind the quote by Secretary of War Staton for Abraham Lincoln after he suffered, and apply those immortal words to Randy, “Now he belongs to the ages.”
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, December 15, 2018 at 12 Noon at Leikness Funeral Home, 358 South Oxford St., Wautoma. Burial will be in Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Town of Rose. A luncheon will follow. Visitation will be held on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of services.