Bob Hermus, age 63, of Little Chute, passed away unexpectedly at his home on November 16, 2019. He was born on September 24, 1956, son of Rudy Jr. and Jeanie (Hermsen) Hermus. Dad married the love of his life and high school sweetheart, Sue Shippy on October 14, 1977, at St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church in Little Chute, and recently celebrated their 42nd wedding anniversary.
After his own father passed on November 16, 1979, Dad proudly stepped in at the young age of 23 to fulfill his role as not only the oldest son and brother, but as a father figure to his six younger siblings. From that point on, he made it his duty to ensure that his mom specifically would be taken care of.
Dad started his career at Jacks Pizza in Little Chute, WI in 1977 where he dedicated 18 years of service as the Plant Manager and Vice President of Production. In 1995, Dad and Mom purchased All Sports Activewear in Little Chute. In 2003, All Sports merged with Promotional Designs, Inc in Ashwaubenon, WI where he served as part owner of the company.
As a boss, Dad may have had a bit of a temper at times, but his motto was that he never handed out an ass chewing if it wasn’t deserved. His employees were familiar with his right pointer finger and a red face when he was upset. Despite those occasional “lectures,” he cared deeply for the people of Promotional Designs, Inc.
He was a simple man, never caring about the latest or greatest in technology, material possessions, or name brand clothing. So much so that his wardrobe consisted of a St. John Athletic jacket (so old the logo is almost unrecognizable), homemade ripped jean shorts, colored t-shirts, and socks and crocs. He had an unusual fascination with birds, often referencing his bird book and teaching his grandkids how to spot a grosbeak or a pileated wood pecker.
He loved music – specifically hard rock, heavy metal, Josh Groban and Adele (haha!). He played a mean air guitar and imaginary keyboard. Without ever being on key, he sang at the top of his lungs. He was creative – proudly giving himself credit as being the first person to blow snow off his driveway and sidewalk with his backpack leaf blower, and noting recently that many other neighbors in the hood are following in his footsteps. Although he thought he could fix anything, it typically took him five trips to the hardware store to get the right materials. He was thoughtful – carefully tiptoeing and taking the same path on mom’s freshly vacuumed carpet, and only drinking out of the OJ carton at night when she was sleeping.
His greatest joy in life were his children. He was a dedicated family man, never saying no but always saying yes. He went out of his way to ensure his children’s happiness. He adored each one of his children for their own special gifts and always made a point to tell them how proud he was of them on a regular basis. He gave the best hugs and just had a way of making us feel loved without ever having to say a word.
He found a new purpose in life when he earned the title “Papa” – with the birth of each one of his eight grandchildren. He was determined to be the best papa and he most definitely lived up to it. He attended every donuts with dad, every concert, every VIP day, every sporting event, and still made time on the weekends for special visits or surprise trips to the cottage. We take comfort in knowing that he continues his role as papa, holding his heavenly granddaughter, Elyse.
When he wasn’t immersed in the life of his grandchildren, you would often find him sitting in his chair reading a book on his kindle. He was excited thinking about the future and being able to soon retire and enjoy life with mom. While mom and dad will no longer be able to enjoy life together, we are confident in knowing that his spirit will be with us all the days of our lives.
Our promise to you dad, is that we will always keep your memory alive – not only for us, but for your precious grandbabies that meant the world to you. We promise to always forgive, to love, and to make sure family always comes first. We promise to always make you proud, and continue to take care of mom and her make our number one priority, just as you would have.
Bob is survived by his loving wife, Sue Hermus; his children and precious grandchildren: Joshua (Michelle) Hermus and their children: Carter, Lauren, Jack and Alexa; Brent (fiancé, Sara Bellin) Hermus; Brooke (Ryan) Polcyn and their children: Lucas, Addison, Reid and Hope; and Rachel (Alyssa Streck) Hermus; his mother, Jeanie Hermus; siblings: Dan (Betsy) Hermus, Cheryl (Pat) Hietpas, Lisa (Randy) Hartjes, Tom (Lynn) Hermus, Reno (Tina) Hermus and Jamie (Kathy) Hermus; brothers and sisters-in-law: John (Ann) Shippy and Mary (Pat) Hietpas; numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends.
Bob was preceded in death by his father, Rudy Hermus Jr.; father and mother-in-law, Bob and Carol Shippy; great niece, Marie Hietpas, and a great nephew, Jacob Hermus.
Visitation will be held at St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church, 323 S. Pine Street, on Thursday, November 21, 2019, from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. A prayer service will conclude the evening. Visitation will continue on Friday morning at the church from 10:00 a.m. until the time of the Mass at 12:00 noon. Interment will be in St. John Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, a memorial is being established in Bob’s name. For online condolences, please visit www.verkuilenfh.com.
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