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Father John J. Spanjers, 80

Father John J. Spanjers, 80, recently of Gulf Shores, Ala., passed away Tuesday, June 11.

He was born Jan. 14, 1933, in Racine, Wis., to Leo and Marie (Berens) Spanjers.

Upon completion of his primary and secondary education in Racine, Father Spanjers entered the St. Francis Seminary in Milwaukee for 2 years and continued his theological studies for an additional 6 years at the St. Paul Seminary and was ordained into the priesthood in 1959 for the Diocese of Superior, serving as a parish priest in the communities of Rhinelander, River Falls, Bayfield, Rice Lake, Superior, Almena, and Turtle Lake. He served for over 54 years.

He is survived by his brother Kenneth (Helen) Spanjers of St Paul, Minn., and numerous nieces and nephews.

Father Spanjers was preceded in death by his parents; his sister, Mary Ann (Richard) Moran; and his brother Leo "Fritz" Spanjers.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held at 11 a.m. Monday, June 17, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Rice Lake, Wis., with His Excellency, The Most Reverend Peter F. Christensen, Bishop of Superior officiating and Rev. Kevin Gordon as homilist. A private burial was to be in Calvary Cemetery, Superior, Wis. Visitation was from 3-6 p.m. Sunday at St. Ann Catholic Church in Turtle Lake, Wis., with a scripture service at 6 p.m., and visitation for 1 hour prior to Mass on Monday at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Rice Lake.

Thank you to all of the friends and caregivers who have helped me during the past year. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the charity of donor's choice.

Skinner Funeral Home of Rice Lake and Turtle Lake is serving the family.

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