Having fought the good fight and kept the faith, Howard Gallup completed the race. He passed away Sunday, July 7, in Lake Mills at age 98.
Awarded the Purple Heart, Howard was a World War II hero. He also was a hero to his family as a son, husband, father, uncle, grandfather, great-grandfather and great-great-grandfather.
Howard was born May 9, 1921, in Milford, to Daisy and Elmer Gallup. He graduated from Lake Mills High School in 1940 and enlisted in the military in May 1943. As part of the U.S. Army’s 95th Infantry Division, he led a squad that fought in France and Germany in 1944 and 1945. While in France in November 1944, Howard was injured when a piece of shrapnel struck him in the head. After recovering, he returned to the war in January 1945. Shortly after, while in Germany, Howard’s squad was captured by German troops and he spent four months in a prisoner-of-war camp, being liberated on May 9, 1945, his 24th birthday. During his service, he was not only awarded the Purple Heart but the Oak Leaf Cluster for a second injury and the Expert Rifleman Award.
On July 5, 1958, Howard married Margaret Meise at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Lake Mills. They had met at the Music Box in Johnson Creek, the local dancing hotspot, and kept dancing throughout their marriage. They raised their family and lived their entire life together in their hometown. They celebrated their 61st wedding anniversary just two days before Howard’s death.
Howard spent most of his work life at the Creamery Packaging Co., later known as Crepaco, in Lake Mills. He worked there as a metal finisher for 35 years. His family is grateful for the sacrifices he made in a difficult job to support them.
Howard’s faith was central to his life. As a loyal member of Lake Mills United Methodist Church, he held many leadership positions and worked countless hours in service of the church. In particular, he led its board of trustees during the construction of a new church and was especially proud of his role in bringing the bell from the former Evangelical United Brethren church in Lake Mills to the new building.
Service was a theme throughout Howard’s life. Many people – family, friends, acquaintances and strangers – benefited from Howard’s generosity and help. No matter what the request, he answered the call, an important lesson he passed on to his family.
Though the Army changed his plan to serve in the Air Force, Howard maintained a lifelong love of flight. He enjoyed co-piloting small aircraft with his flight instructors and loved taking guests along on his flights.
Howard loved to travel and he and Margaret took many camping trips around the nation, with their family and as a couple. Though he hadn’t owned a motorcycle since his younger days in the Rock Valley Motorcycle Club, Howard never passed up the chance to ride.
While he was affected by his time in the war, especially in his later years, Howard was an active member of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, Disabled American Veterans, local ex-POW organizations and the American Legion.
He loved any kind of family celebration but, most of all, his birthday – and there had to be cake. Music was a big part of Howard’s life and he liked nothing better than to listen to his talented son-in-law, Bill, sing – and sing with him, too.
Howard lived a full life, proud of his family and loved by them.
He’s survived by his wife, Margaret; his daughters, Sherri (Bill) Bossingham of Lake Mills, and Mary (Tom) Schemm of Appleton; his son, Larry (Cheryl) Gallup of Appleton; his grandchildren, Danial (Cindy) Schultz of Watertown, Deanna (Keith Schlichting) Yandre of Beaver Dam, Rob (Cheryl) Bossingham of Dane, Sara (Will) O’Brien of Fitchburg, Adam (Ellie) Schemm of Wauwatosa, Ryan Schemm of Kenosha, Shea Gallup of Chicago, Ill., and Keegan Gallup of Appleton; his great-grandchildren, Katie (Charles) Tahara of Hartland, Jeffrey Schultz of Watertown, Evan (Ashley Mueller) Yandre of Waunakee, Avery Bossingham of Dane, Finn O’Brien of Fitchburg, Scarlett Schemm of Wauwatosa and Louie Schemm of Wauwatosa; his great-great-granddaughter, Sophia Tahara of Hartland; and nieces, nephews, other family and friends.
He was preceded in death by two brothers, Russell and Turner, and one sister, Bernice.
A funeral will be held at 10 a.m. Friday at Lake Mills United Methodist Church, 271 E. Prospect St., with a visitation from 9 a.m. until the time of the service. Burial of Howard’s cremains will be at Aztalan Cemetery.
Memorials can be directed to the Lake Mills United Methodist Church or the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).
The family would like to thank Lilac Springs and Rainbow Hospice for their loving care.