Russell Leo Kortendick, “Russ”, age 98, of Racine passed away Friday at All Saints Ascension Hospital. Russ was born on a farm near Kansasville, WI, to Peter and Mary (Kleinvehn) Kortendick on November 24, 1918.
Russell served with the 2nd Infantry Division and 9th Air Force in Europe during WWII and was proudly escorted on the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight by his grandson, Brian Kortendick. He was a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church and served on the building committee for Sacred Heart School and was involved with the Holy Name Society and the Ushers. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus, VFW Post 1361, and Meadowbrook Country Club. In the Racine community, Russell was a member of and served on the boards of the State Street Business Association, Northside Business Men, Racine Area Manufactures and Commerce, St. Monica’s Senior Living Home, Northside Business Association, Col. L. C. Christensen Charitable Foundation, Family Service of Racine, Security Savings and Loan Bank (Union Savings and Loan), YMCA and the Wisconsin Retail Hardware Association. In Florida Russ was with the Villages VFW and the Villages Honor Guard.
Russ was an avid fisherman, golfer and enjoyed bowling, traveling and dancing. He worked for his brother-in-law, Ed Hermes at Hermes Hardware in Racine from 1933-1941 and then at Twin Disc as a machinist from 1941-1948. But his lifelong work was the hardware business, he worked at Racine Hardware 1948-1951 and in 1951 he opened his first hardware store at 1518 State Street and another store at 3301 Douglas Ave. in 1959. Along with his sons, Russell D. Kortendick and Glenn Kramer, and son-in-law Richard Bayer, Russ opened other stores at 3806 Douglas Ave. Racine in 1968, Gurnee IL in 1975 and 1222 N. Green Bay Road in Racine 1980. When Russ retired, he opened a sharpening business in The Villages, Florida.
Surviving are his two sons and two daughters, Glenn (Barbara) Kramer, Madison, WI, Diane Tutlewski-Fanelli (Bill) Kenosha, WI, Russell D. (Kathy) Kortendick, Racine, WI, and Karen Bayer Greer (William), Racine, WI; 12 grandchildren, Mathew Kramer, Jennifer Stinnette, Kelly Moyer, Theresa Tutlewski, Lucinda Tutlewski, Teddy Tutlewski, Jonathon Tutlewski, Scott Kortendick, Pamela Kortendick, Brian Kortendick, Mary Kay Tajnai, and Tricia Kingsley. He is further survived by 27 great grandchildren; 4 great great grandchildren; special friend, Olive Brastad; God children, Lucinda Tutlewski, Judy Porcaro, Elaine Wagner; many nieces and nephews who loved and respected him; other relatives and many other life-long friends. He was preceded in death by his beloved wives Florence (Isferding) and Tena (Kingsfield Kramer); parents Peter and Mary Kortendick; brothers, Alvin and Roman; sisters, Lucille, Marion, Helen, Ruth, Jeanette, Evelyn and Shirley; and son-in-law Richard Bayer.
Relatives and friends may meet with the family Friday at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 2201 Northwestern Avenue from 9 a.m. until 10:45 a.m. followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m., with Rev Ricardo Martin officiating. Interment with Full Military Honors will follow at Calvary Cemetery, 2510 Kinzie Ave, Racine, WI 53405. In lieu of flowers memorials to St. Monica’s Senior Living Home 3920 North Green Bay Road, Racine, WI 53404 have been suggested by the family.