WISCONSIN HIGH 50th REUNION
Wife: Kathleen Lillegren, graduated with her Master’s Degree from UW-Milwaukee in Speech and Language Pathology and has recently retired after 25 years with the Greendale WI School system.
Son: John, attended Marquette University and is the owner of Amy’s Candy Kitchen in Cedarburg, WI
Daughter: Kristin, graduated from UW-Madison, now living with her husband and two children in the Lincoln Park area of Chicago. Kristin and Steve are the proud parents of our two charming grandkids, Claire, 5 and Alex, 3.
Daughter: Julie, currently a junior at UW-Milwaukee, majoring in Marketing and Advertising.
After leaving Wisconsin High, I attended UW-Madison with studies in Russian and graduated with a BA in History in1965. I had some great memories with my membership in the Chi Phi Fraternity. Upon graduation I went to work in industrial sales with LTV Steel, Pittsburgh, one of the big 5 Steel Mills. Over a 14-year span I worked in the Memphis, Philadelphia and Milwaukee sales offices. In 1979 I left LTV Steel to become the Vice- President of Wisconsin Nipple & Fitting Corp., a Milwaukee steel pipe fitting manufacturer. Eight years later I purchased the company and became active in the American Pipe Fitting Association. As president, I increased the company from 18 employees to 90+ employees running two shifts. I truly loved the process of building the business, and was actively involved in 5 major plant expansions. When I sold it in 2006 to a division of Hitachi, it was the second largest steel pipe nipple manufacturing company east of the Rockies. For those not in the business, a nipple is a short piece of pipe with threads on both ends.
Kathy and I retired a year and a half ago and have kept ourselves busy with the designing and building of a French Country ranch home in Delafield WI. We’ve traveled extensively in the United States and overseas and look forward to continuing that hobby. We both enjoy biking, sailing, gardening, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and spending time in our condo in Door County.
I fondly remember my Russian class with Sanford Couch who inspired my strong interest in Russian studies and language. I can still recite a number of Russian idioms.
I recall Tom Stafford standing up in front of Mrs. Patton’s class, pulling out a fistful of coins from his pocket and saying to her “Baby, you are worth all of my change.”
I enjoyed singing in the choir with J. Russell Paxton and I continue to have a love of music.
I also remember the trouble our Shop class got into with Mr. Johnson for making coin slugs on the shop automatic hacksaw which we used in the local pay phones.
It will be great to see all of you again.
Wisconsin High School
60th Reunion – September 17, 2020
BIO: Pete Lilligren Franz Altpeter
Received: September 15, 2020
I have been retired now for 12 years and thoroughly enjoy retirement. It was a great career, but I am glad I left when I did. There’s more to life than owning your own business. I’ve been keeping busy volunteering on two Boards of Directors, which as you know is a thankless job, but somebody has to do it and the pay is outstanding.
My wife Kathy and I still do many of the activities that we’ve enjoyed in the past, but the Covid situation sure has put a damper on a lot of our plans. In spite of it, we continue to take long bike rides which has been made easier with our new E-bikes, especially in Door County.
Kathy has been a big help in working with me in developing an extensive prairie behind our home. We have planted over 700 3-inch potted wildflowers over the last ten years, providing a great monarch habitat. Great to have the wonderful color appear each year.
My 1977 15-foot sailboat is now sitting in the garage, and we’ve moved on to power boating on a nearby lake. It’s a lot easier sipping wine in a boat with cushioned seats.
We continue to enjoy the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra – have been season ticket holders for 35 years – now watching virtually, but it’s not the same thing. Hopefully we will be able to enjoy the new MSO Hall when it’s completed and Covid is a distant memory.
A big change in our life is we are full-time babysitters for our daughter Julie’s 2 year old Emily while Julie and her husband work. We decided to watch her 4 days a week during the pandemic instead of using day care. That little girl has changed our life! It’s a lot of work, but we are so lucky to have her living so close and reminding us of what is really important in life.
We look forward to reconnecting with all of you. Wish it could be in person, but Zoom is second best. Hope your health is good and life is treating you well.