Roger (RJ) Van Handel

March 25, 1935 ~ September 16, 2020 (age 85)


Rog Jacob (RJ) Van Handel was called home to heaven on September 16, 2020, following a brave struggle with cancer.  He was surrounded by his loving family, which was a source of great pride and joy.

Rog was born on March 25, 1935 to Barney and Verna (Huss) Van Handel.  He graduated from 8th grade at Holy Angels School in Darboy and attended St. John’s High School in Little Chute.  On September 18, 1958, he married Mutz (Marie) De Bruin at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Kaukauna.   They enjoyed 62 years of marriage, filled with nine children and all the laughter and lively activity that comes with a busy household.

Rog proudly served in the United States Army, 1955-1957, Sixth Armored Division. 

Aside from his family, building was Rog’s passion in life and he loved working with his hands.  As a contractor, he helped to build the Darboy Club, his own barn and countless houses that provided safe and warm homes for many families.  In later years, he could routinely be found tinkering in his shop, building everything from lawn ornaments for family members to weaving looms for the women in Haiti.  If you needed something built, Rog was the man for the job.

Rog enjoyed life to the fullest.  He especially enjoyed hunting, fishing, and baseball.  On his 80th birthday, he was delighted to attend a Brewers game where he took home a foul ball.  As a devoted and faith filled man, he never missed Sunday mass.  As a loving husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather, his greatest enjoyment in life was a good party with his family.  His family was his life and he loved and enjoyed each family member deeply.

Rog is survived by his devoted wife of 62 years, Mutz, 9 children and spouses:  Karen (John) Chavlovich, Carolyn (Tod) Zacharias, Joseph (Debbie) Van Handel, Douglas (Mary) Van Handel, Dan (Kim) Van Handel, Dianne (Dan) Pritzl, Colleen (Blair) VandeHey, James (Joann) Van Handel, Barney (Sarah) Van Handel.  Rog was also blessed with 20 beautiful grandchildren, 21 great grandchildren, and three more great grandchildren on the way.  He is further survived by four sisters and one brother.

He was preceded in death by his parents, one brother and one sister.   

Due to Covid restrictions, private family services will be held. For online condolences, please visit:

 We will see you on the highground, RJ. 

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