LA FARGE—Louise A. Hemstead due to arrive in January of 1961, Louise Ann (Lathrop) Hemstead came into this world early on Dec. 24, 1960, to meet her parents Trayton and Ruth (Reynolds) Lathrop. She left this world early on May 15, 2018, at the age of 57 with her husband, David and children close beside her.
Louise was known as full of life to all who knew her, as well as kind, loving, hard-working, and brilliant. She dedicated herself to her career, her family, the church, and her horses. She was a loving wife, sister, daughter, mother and grandmother who went out of her way to care for those around her. Working in the dairy industry for over 30 years, she would have celebrated her 25th anniversary at CROPP Cooperative/Organic Valley as the Chief Operating Officer on June 3rd. She was also the president of Organic Logistics since 2004, a board member and president of the Wisconsin Dairy Products Association (2011-2018) and member of both the Kickapoo Reserve and La Farge School Boards. She was a farmer’s wife, milking cows alongside her husband since their marriage in 1985 and she was an active member of the ELCA church, serving as a council member for the ELCA Churchwide body (2009-2015) and on the National ELCA Synod Assembly (2011-2013). She was very proud to have completed her Masters in Servant Leadership from Viterbo University and applied those learnings in both her work at the church and her career at Organic Valley. A University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate, Louise was recently acknowledged through the establishment of an endowment at the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. In April 2018, she was presented with the Ray Hass Pioneer award for her work and commitment to organic agriculture and in 2004 was recognized as the Vernon Area Business and Professional Women’s Woman of the Year.
Louise is survived by her husband, David Hemstead; and their two children, Kristina and Robert Ralph and Justin and Corina Hemstead; grandchildren, Jenner Alexander, Avelynn Ralph, and her unborn grandson due only days after her passing. She is their guardian angel. She is also survived by her siblings, Mary Lathrop, Carol (Lathrop) White and David and Jackie Lathrop; as well as several nieces and nephews.
Friends may call on Friday, May 18, 2018, from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. at the TRINITY LUTHERAN CHURCH in Cashton, Wis., to include a short prayer service at 6 p.m. A private family burial will be held at BETHANY SANDHILL CHURCH at a later date. Donations can be made to family, Bethany Lutheran Church, or a charity of their choice. Online condolences may be offered at www.VossFH.com. The Vosseteig Funeral Home of LaFarge is serving the family.