weather

61°

Clear | 8MPH

NEWSROOM * CIRCULATION * ADVERTISING

CONTACT US MANAGE ACCOUNT SUBSCRIBE

Friday

September 2014

19

Former fire chief Norman 'Pepper' Steffen dies at 85

Photo by:

A lifelong Sussex and Lisbon resident, Norman "Pepper" Steffen, died Saturday, March 29, 2014, one month short of his 86th birthday.

He was born on a Lisbon farm off Highway 164 on April 29, 1928, to Otto and Anna Steffen, the last of six children. At about age 6, forced by the Depression, he moved with his family to Sussex where his father became a milk hauler.

The Steffen family was part of the "Lisbon German Invasion" that started about 1880 with the Stiers, Mankes and later the Steffens and Tetzlaffs.

Norman is said to have gained the nickname of Pepper as a youth because his mother made special peppernut hard cookies. Even when he was 85 years of age many people did not know that his baptized name was Norman.

He attended the Lisbon Sixteen School with Miss Thelma Halquist as his teacher. On moving to Sussex he attended Sussex Main Street School, graduating in 1942. He attended the two-year Sussex High School, graduating in 1944, and finally graduated after two more years, in 1946, from Menomonee Falls High School.

Steffen played on the Sussex High School baseball and basketball teams, and later played on the Sussex Land of Puddles and Rivers teams.

He started hauling milk with his father in 1943, and then took over his own route for Golden Guernsey Dairy in a 25-year career.

Steffen joined the Sussex Fire Department in 1950. He entered the Army during the Korean War, and served at Camp McCoy in Wisconsin, and Fort Hood, Texas, mostly as a truck driver.

Steffen met his future wife, Joan Cumiskey at a wedding reception for his friend, Charles Zimmermann. Soon after his release from service he and Joan were married. They had three children — Pam, Randy, and Jimmy, who died of cancer at age 11.

In 1950, after he joined the Sussex Fire Department, it became his second home. He held the steward post, and later was a lieutenant and a captain before becoming chief in 1973.

He served as chief until 1975, when he suffered a stroke. While he gave up the chief's position, he was a member of the fire department until 1984, having served 33 years in all.

Pepper Steffen was from a dancing family, and he loved to play sheepshead and cribbage, especially with family members. Just recently he won $5 in a family cribbage tournament.

Steffen was preceded in death by his wife, Joan, who died of cancer in 2004. He is survived by son Randy, daughter Pam (John)Willoughby, three grandchildren and eight great grandchildren.

Services will be at Redeemer United Church of Christ at 7 p.m. Thursday, with visitation from 3 to 6:45 p.m.

Interment is set for Friday at Pine Lawn Cemetery.

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.


Living Lake Country

E-mail Newsletter

Top stories from the Lake Country area. Tuesday afternoons and Thursday mornings.


Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter
Get the Newsletter!

Login or Register to manage all your newsletter preferences.
Tools
TEXT SIZE
Lake Country Construction Guide

 

Consruction season is underway in Lake Country and

we've got you covered when it comes to street closures and delays:

Mukwonago area projects

Sussex, Menomonee Falls area projects

Kettle Moraine area projects

Greater Lake Country area projects

 

Special Report
Community Pride 2014

  

Celebrate Lake Country 

communities with stories

of community pride

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rummage Router
Just click to find a rummage near you

Advertisement

Your Photos
Leslie Rohloff - Eagle , WI
Community Blogs

Lake Country residents share their views on news, happenings and current events.

It's Hemmer Time
By Amy L. Geiger-Hemmer
Obama has no intention of defeating ISIS...period.

Bernie Ziebart

The Engineering Perspective
By Bernie Ziebart
Penn State

GarberPark
By Mike Garber
35th Topic - This space for rent

Cook's Corner
By Cynthia Acosta Luksich
Summer in Wisconsin equals chili: Basic chili from leftover taco meat

Eagle's Eye
By Al Neuhauser
Global Humbug IX-Environmental Madness

LivingLakeCountry.com features more than a dozen community bloggers - a group of volunteer conversation leaders who are up on the latest topics and never short on an opinion. Just a few are pictured here. Check out the rest and see what they have to say!

View All Blogs

Discussion Guidelines

Do you want to become a Community Blogger? LivingLakeCountry.com welcomes your thoughts and opinions. Contact us for more information:
I want to blog

Legal Notices
Back to top