Patrick Kurt Pfaffle, 59, of Pleasant Prairie, passed away May 25 from pancreatic cancer at Hospice Alliance Hospice House, with his wife Kathy at his side.
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Pat was born June 12, 1959, in Waukesha. He was the son of Roger and Carol (Havican) Pfaffle. He graduated from Waukesha South High School and received a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from UW-Stevens Point, and graduated with a doctorate degree in biochemistry from the Medical College of Wisconsin.
On November 25, 1988, Pat married Kathy Feil in Milwaukee. They were blessed with 30 years together.
Pat completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, and was a faculty member in the Life Sciences Department at Indiana State University in Terre Haute for five years. Pat accepted a position in the Biology Department at Carthage College in 1997. During his tenure, he was chair of the department for 15 years and served on various committees.
Pat loved teaching and enjoyed sharing knowledge and experiences with students. He was instrumental in developing a Carthage medical mission trip to the island of Ometepe, Nicaragua, which gave students the opportunity to work in rural medical clinics, and also to experience the culture of a foreign country. Over the years the program expanded greatly, and Pat, along with his colleague and best friend Matt Zorn, worked together to include geoscience involving various water, renewable energy and mapping projects on Ometepe. Various people from outside Carthage including water engineers, physicians and other health care professionals have also participated in the program and added to it significantly.
Besides family and Nicaragua, Pat’s other great passion was flying. He got his private pilot’s license in the early 2000s. His first plane was a 1946 Ercoupe which he flew for several years, and he went on to buy a Van’s RV-6 airplane a few years ago. Pat flew his plane into the EAA every year with his great aviation friends. Few things made Pat happier than being up in the air.
Pat was preceded in death by his father, Roger.
He is survived by his wife Kathy, daughters Oksana and Nadya, both of Milwaukee, his mother Carol (Fred DePirro) of Bonita Springs, Fla., and siblings Roger (Nancy) Pfaffle, Michele (Tom) Baer, Paul (Gina Johnson) Pfaffle, Pam (Bryan) Roemeling, and Veronica (John) McMahon; along with many other family and friends.
Visitation will be 9 to 11 a.m. Friday, May 31, at First Presbyterian Church, 1803 83rd Street, in Kenosha. Memorial service will follow at 11 a.m. Pat enjoyed living a casual lifestyle, and in that spirit we invite you to dress casually for the service.
In lieu of flowers, memorials to Fundacion Esperanza, a non-profit organization that helps fund missions of the Nicaragua program, or First Presbyterian Church, would be greatly appreciated by the family.
The family would like to extend sincere thanks to Dr. Ben George and the staff of the Froedtert Hospital Cancer Center, and Dr. Abdul Durrani and the staff of Hospice Alliance Hospice House, for their professional, compassionate care of Pat.
Proko Funeral Home & Crematory
Kenosha, WI 53144
Phone: (262) 654-3533
Visit & Sign Pat’s Online Memorial Book at: