Rodney Carl Klassy passed away on May 17, 2019 in Ingram, Texas. Rodney was born in Darlington, Wisconsin on June 6, 1955 to Herbert Delmar and Audrae “Hope” (Swiggum) Klassy. Rod grew up on Sunnyside Road in rural Blanchardville with his seven siblings on the family farm. He went to school in Blanchardville. He participated in football and track. He loved hunting with his dad and brothers and Uncle Don Hamilton. The family enjoyed many family gatherings and picnics. Rod was the Pecatonica High School Homecoming King in 1972. He loved reading sci-fi and Louis L’Amour western books. Rod graduated from the Pecatonica High School in 1973. He was in the US Army from 1973-1976 as an Arabic army interpreter/translator. He completed a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and conducted graduate research in plant molecular biology at Texas A&M University.
Rod began his career as research assistant for Agrigenetics Corp.. When he moved to Austin, Texas, he served as Marketing Manager and Director of Business Development Manager for Ambion Inc. and Applied Biosystems Eventually becoming the Director of Animal Health Business Unit for Life Technologies . Rod ended his lifelong career in agriculture sciences as a Project Manager for IC² Institute and the McCombs Business School.
Rod enjoyed being active/outdoors; playing racquet ball, golfing, gardening, and family canoe trips to the Boundary waters. He loved his cat Omar and took care of stray cats in the area.
He loved talking about home in WI, and how family and crops were doing.
Rod is survived by 5 brothers; Ralph (Vicki) Klassy of North Fond du lac, Dale (Lynn) Klassy of Palatine IL, Neal (Linda) Klassy of Blanchardville, James (Chris ) Klassy of Monticello, and Kelvin (Ann) Klassy of New Glarus; 2 sisters, Carol (Art) Thompson of New Glarus, and Fern (Gary) Langfoss of Hollandale; his friend and ex-wife Carolyn Klassy of Austin, TX, and many nieces and nephews.
Rodney was preceded in death by his parents Herbert who died on March 20, 2015 and Hope, who died on April 21, 2015.
A gathering to celebrate and honor Rod’s life will be held on Sunday, August 25, 2019 from 1 until 4pm at Blanchard Hall at 204 South Main Street in Blanchardville, with a memorial service to be held at 3:30 PM.
The family wishes to thank Rodney's ex-wife Carolyn and her family and his friend Susanne Arlan and her family for the care and friendship they provided him as he struggled with his alcoholism and resulting health issues.
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