LANCASTER - Edward J. "Ed" McNamara, age 93, of Lancaster, died Saturday, Dec. 24, 2011, at Grant Regional Health Center in Lancaster.
Ed was born on June 24, 1918, the son of James and Nora (Lucey) McNamara, in the Township of Seneca, Crawford County, Wis. He attended rural country school and graduated from Seneca High School. On Oct. 14, 1941, Ed married Catherine Mergen at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Bloomington. Catherine predeceased him on Nov. 13, 1970. On Oct. 6, 1976, he married Marie Heying at Nativity Catholic Church, Dubuque, Iowa.
Upon completion of high school, in 1937, he began employment with his uncle, G. C. Lucey, who owned and operated a John Deere dealership with stores at Bagley and Ferryville. On Feb. 1, 1940, he became employed by John Deere Plow Co., Milwaukee, as a block man covering the Portage territory.
Ed entered the United States Army on Nov. 1, 1942. He served 26 months overseas in the European Theater of Operation with the John Deere Battalion. Ed was discharged with the rank of first sergeant. Upon his discharge he entered into partnership with his uncle Greg Lucey, in a business known as G.C. Lucey & Company, a John Deere dealership at Bagley. In the 1950s, Ed founded what was later to be known as the Farmers Implement Company at Bloomington. In 1960, he sold his interest in Farmers Implement Company and moved to Lancaster, where he then founded E.J. McNamara Real Estate & Auction Service. He retired after 42 years as an auctioneer and real estate broker.
Ed served as the president of the Wisconsin Auctioneers Association and was inducted into its Hall of Fame in 1974. He served as the president of the Wisconsin Farm & Land Brokers and received national accreditation from the National Farm and Land Brokers Association. He was one of the founders and served as president of the Southwest Wisconsin Board of Realtors and received the Realtor of the Year award from the state association. Ed was active in the Lancaster community, serving 22 years as a director of the former Union State Bank; served as a member of the board of the former Lancaster Memorial Hospital; served as a trustee and council member of St. Clement's Catholic Church; was a member of both the 3rd and 4th Degree Knights of Columbus Council No. 2820; charter member of Liscom Bros. Post 482 American Legion, Bagley; and a life member of the VFW Post No. 2344 of Lancaster.
Surviving are his wife, Marie; two daughters, Noreen (Dan) Welte of Littleton, Colo., and Mary (John) Pipal of Dodgeville; three sons, Robert (Jane) McNamara of Phoenix, Ariz., Patrick (Connie) McNamara and John (Rose) McNamara both of Lancaster; seven grandchildren, Catherine (Nick) Cubik, Michael (Jill) McNamara, Ellen (Marcus) DeVere, Elizabeth McNamara, Brendan Pipal, Sara McNamara and Ryan McNamara; a great-grandchild, Jackson Cubik; a brother, Frank (Beverly) McNamara of Fitchburg; two sisters-in-law, Bernice Mergen of Patch Grove, and Mary Mergen of Bloomington; and brother and sister-in-law, John and Ida Maletta of Centerville, Iowa.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Catherine; infant son, James; two brothers, Joseph and Daniel; and three sisters, Marge Rubejsek, Mary Titlbach and Veronica Litchfield.
Services will be at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011, at ST. CLEMENT CATHOLIC CHURCH, Lancaster, with the Rev. Greg Lucey, S.J. and the Rev. William Seipp officiating. Burial with military honors will be in St. Mary's Cemetery, Bloomington. Friends may call on Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2011, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the SCHWARTZ FUNERAL HOME in Lancaster.
In lieu of flowers or other items of tribute, an Edward J. McNamara Memorial Fund has been established. Online condolences may be left for the family at: