William E. Hughes, age 93, Sheboygan, passed away peacefully on August 7, 2021. He was born May 10, 1928 in Milwaukee, WI, the son of the late William and Ermal (Parker) Hughes. His family moved to Racine, WI, where he graduated from Washington High School. Bill graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with Bachelor and Master degrees in Music Education.
Bill married Mary A. Geisler on February 11, 1956 at First United Methodist Church in Reedsburg, WI. They were happily married for 62 years until the time of her death in 2018.
His passion for music led him to a teaching career as a high school band director in Random Lake, Reedsburg, and Kenosha, and a Professor of Music at the University of Wisconsin-Sheboygan County, where he shared his talents with students for 25 years. During his teaching years in Sheboygan, Bill taught various music courses, band, choir, and directed the Chamber Singers, Campus Singers, as well as the popular “Potpourri” Variety Show.
As a trumpet player, Bill enjoyed performing with many music groups over the years including the Wuerl Band, Sheboygan Symphony, Sheboygan Pops Concert Band, Peptones, Carl Laack Orchestra, Riverfront Ramblers, and many others. He especially took pride in the musical talents of his children and grandchildren. As a music educator, Bill spent thousands of hours teaching music lessons to multiple generations of his family.
A lifelong Badger fan, Bill enjoyed many Badger events and took pride in marching in the UW Alumni Band every year. Additionally, he was an active member of the UW-Madison Alumni Association, UW-Madison Alumni Club of Sheboygan County, Wisconsin Bandmasters Association, Phi Beta MU, Sheboygan Concert Association, and served on the Sheboygan Symphony Board. In recognition of his achievements in the music world, Bill was honored as the Teacher of the Year by UW-Sheboygan County, was a recipient of the Sparkplug award by UW-Madison alumni, twice received the Outstanding Alumni Award from the Sheboygan County Chapter, and his name is displayed on the Music Wall of Fame at the Fountain Park Bandshell.
Bill is survived by his loving family of five children, Melody (Tim) Manion, Rondell (Lee) Prinsen, Marci Hughes, Robert (Heide) Hughes, and Lori (Perry) Fritz; eight grandchildren, Sean (Amber) Manion, Meredith Rathe, Matthew (Krystal) Prinsen, Megan (Marcus) Ninneman, Abigail and Emily Hughes, Allison (Tom) Ross, and Nathan (Taylor) Fritz; and seven great-grandchildren, Parker and Payton Ninneman, Mason, Grace, and Ryder Prinsen, Elliana Ross, Madison Rathe, and Baby Fritz arriving soon; and sister-in-law, Molly Hughes, and nephews and nieces.
He was preceded in death by his wife Mary, parents William and Ermal Hughes, brother Charles Hughes, sister and her husband Marlene and John Hallinan, granddaughter’s husband Alex Rathe, and niece Glenda Spaulding.
Visitation will be held on Friday, August 13, 2021 at St. Luke United Methodist Church, 623 Ontario Avenue, Sheboygan, from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. A private family memorial service will be held following the visitation. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to St. Luke United Methodist Church are welcome. Bill’s family would like to thank Dr. Sonya Hollingsworth, the staff at Pine Haven Christian Communities, and HSHS St. Nicholas Hospice for their loving care and support.
Date: Friday Aug 13, 2021
Time: 1 p.m. - 3 p.m.
Location: St. Luke United Methodist Church [map]