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Kevin Cronin, 50, died in a room at the Knights Inn motel at about 9 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 1.

Cronin was active in the Racine County Republican Party and worked at CNH Industrial.Diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in September, Cronin refused offers to stay with friends, or live out his days in hospice care after doctors told him he had weeks to live. He emphatically told them that he wanted to live out the last few weeks his way and often downplayed his symptoms.

Kevin passed away peacefully in his sleep, Keith Cronin, Kevin’s brother.

“Although a valiant effort, the cancer & infection were too much… Kevin is now at rest & pain free. As we make all of the appropriate arrangements we truly appreciate all of the love & support many of you showed our brother during his battle. He truly was grateful for the care & concern he received,” Keith wrote on Kevin’s Facebook page.

Over the past several weeks, Cronin posted photos of his cat Angel, what movies he was watching and spent his time with family and friends.

“Kevin and I were watching Bull Durham just a couple of days ago, and in one of the scenes was this line: have you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal savior?” said Nancy Milholland, a close friend of Kronin’s. “I yelled out yes. I asked Kevin if he had, and he said, what? So I had to repeat the question and Kevin answered yes! That will always stay with me.”

Active in the Racine County Republican Party, Cronin volunteered his time to help with several campaigns including Rep. Paul Ryan, Gov. Scott Walker, Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch, and Sen. Van Wanggaard.

Kevin’s friends flooded his Facebook page today as they remembered their friend.

  • Deena Ferguson:”I’m already missing Kevin‘s posts keeping us updated on the movies he’s watching, music he’s listening to, daily birthday wishes for celebrities or just plain regular folk. Never thought I’d say this, but I’m I even missing the posts about the Bears. RIP, Kevin. There is another hole in many hearts tonight.”
  • Debra Stephens-Taylor: “It would be so like you Kevin to leave us on Super bowl Sunday!!!…You left us in the spirit to celebrate your life and not your death. You showed me how to walk in grace and dignity even when you were in pain. You never complained to me about how sick you felt, when ever I asked your response was always I feel good now that I am out of that hospital and here with my cat Angel. What a perfect name for your cat, God must of told you to call her Angel, because she was an angel to you……R.I.P. my friend always… will be missed.”
  • Dave Dayler: “After a 4 month battle, my friend Kevin went home today. It’s always hard to lose the “good people” in your life, and Kevin was no exception. A volunteer with a servant’s heart, Kevin spent his time “behind the scenes” working for the people and causes he believed in. A volunteer’s volunteer. That’s probably why when he received his diagnosis in September so many people rallied to raise money and show support for him. It was a pleasure to spend some of the walk of life with Kevin. To work with him side by side, and to see him sacrifice for the good of others was flat out motivating. There are not too many like him out there. As I promised when this all began, I will follow your lead and grow my hair until I can donate it as you once did, and it will be donated in your name. Cancer, you may have won the battle, but Kevin has won the war. Now rest in peace dedicated warrior, your pain is over and your heavenly home has been prepared. You will be missed until we meet again.”
  • Kaye Ransomi: “So today we lost a good man Kevin Cronin lost his battle to cancer. Of all the days, Superbowl Sunday…now he has the best seat in the stadium. What an incredible Patriot (excuse the pun) but I know of all the pics he would want posted it would be with Paul Ryan. RIP Kevin…”
  • Leona Woods-Brumby: “Rest in Heaven to a man I’ve known for many years. I pray that God wraps his arms around Kevin’s family and friends as we say see you later my friend…. Much love to you……”
  • Pam Krause Mazzulla: “You were a warrior before and after your diagnosis – you will be missed, but not forgotten. I thank God for the time we had together and take comfort in knowing that you are in His loving arms. Rest in peace Kevin Cronin.”

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.

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