Jeffrey K. Stran

September 9, 1954 - March 16, 2022

Jeffrey Kenneth Stran, 67, passed into eternal life on Wednesday, March 16, 2022, in Eau Claire, Wisconsin with his family at his side after ongoing health issues over the last few years.

Jeff was born on September 9, 1954 to Carl Kenneth Stran and Joyce (Tharrington) in Geneva, Illinois. He was the “perfect” older sibling to his brother Tim and sister Sue, as long as you asked him. He enjoyed growing up in what was then a rural area of Illinois and riding his bike to the baseball fields and staying until dark as often as possible. He had a natural talent for many sports, particularly baseball and golf.

He graduated from Geneva High School in 1972. He attended the University of Illinois- Urbana-Champaign to study Finance and graduated in 1977 with a Bachelor of Business Administration. Despite his academic accomplishments, what he may have been most proud of was the excessive speeding ticket he earned while driving home from college while listening to the Daytona 500 on the radio.

After college, Jeff met his wife Elizabeth (Beth) Bruder while working together at Dukane in Saint Charles, Illinois. They were married in March of 1981 at Bethany Lutheran Church in Batavia, Illinois. At 6’2” Jeff towered over his bride who (at that time) stretched to a proud 4’11”. The church pictures were taken with the help of several church steps hidden by the help of a wedding dress train.

Throughout his career, Jeff worked as commodities trader at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange where he was able to work alongside his lifelong best friend, Timothy Hanson.  “Timmy” later became the godfather to Jeff’s daughter Emily when she was born in 1983. Jeff’s son was also named after Timothy’s father, and the delivering doctor, when Charley was born in 1985. It was a miracle that Jeff had any say in the naming of his children, considering he had to be located on a golf course in order to attend each delivery.

Along with the game of golf, Jeff enjoyed spending time outdoors and fishing for muskies “up north” when the family would vacation each summer. Each passenger in the car was required to stretch and “salute” as they passed by Rollie and Helen’s Musky Tackle shop each and every time they drove past, a tradition that continues to this day. It was this love of spending time with family and the outdoors that led the family to build a “cabin” in Tomahawk, Wisconsin near where they often spent time in the summer. This became the primary residence for the family as their children became older in order to offer them a more relaxed upbringing. Jeff was known for making personal sacrifices for others and this was no exception, as he commuted between Chicago and Tomahawk each week for many years. Although he spent many, many hours in the car each week, Jeff still found time to help coach baseball teams, attend hockey tournaments, and take carloads of teenage girls to each and every boy-band concert the nineties had to offer.

When Jeff’s children graduated and settled down in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, he and Beth relocated in order to be near their family (and let’s be honest here, future grandchildren). His hobbies in recent years included purchasing unauthorized iPad apps and sneaking them candy without their parents’ permission. It can’t be said for sure that it was because they had the same level of maturity or attention span, but “Bapa” and his grandkids had a special connection that will remain with them for their entire lives, although their time together was undoubtedly too short.

Jeff is preceded in death by his sister Susan (Stran) Schultz and father Carl Kenneth Stran both of whom he missed dearly and eagerly awaited to be reunited with. Jeff is survived by his wife Beth, daughter Emily (John) Crossman of Elk Mound, Wisconsin, son Charles (Talia) Stran of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and grandchildren Noah, Adalinne, Eli, and Elias; as well as his mother Joyce Stran of Geneva, Illinois and brother Timothy (Kelli) Stran of Elburn, Illinois.

A private remembrance will be held at a later time.

  1. My deepest condolences to Charley, Tim and the rest of his family. Had many fun times with Jeff, Tim and Charley duck hunting in Arkansas. Jeff was so easy going, always happy and fun to be around. I enjoyed playing golf with him also, he was a very good golfer and a great putter. RIP Jeff, love always to Tim and Charley.

    - Gary Garlington

  2. Our Family will always remember Jeff’s humor, and how he always welcomed everyone. He was so Respectful of everyone. Our Family will always remember, when we were invited to a Stran Thanksgiving, right after our Father passed away, he welcomed us with open arms. He will be truly missed by his Family and Friends. Praying that Jeff is talking to our Father, and Brother-In-Law Larry, who passed away last March 16th. . We can only imagine the party they must be having in Heaven. We just wish we could be there with them.

    - Susan K French

  3. We will always remember Jeff’s humor and how he Respected everyone he met. He always welcomed everyone with a smile. Remembering when our Father passed away, our Family was invited to the Strans Thanksgiving, he welcomed us with open arms. Praying Jeff is talking with our Father, and Brother-In-Law, Larry, who passed away last March 16th. We can only imagine the Party they must be having in Heaven. We wish we could be there with them.

    - Susan K French

  4. Beth, Emily and Charlie. I’m so sorry for your loss. I hope you can reflect on all the happy memories your family has created. In sympathy, Kim Schuhow (Kelli’s sister)

    - Kim Schuhow

  5. “Coach” will be missed. What a good man. Maybe Greg and him will meet up! Both gone too soon. Love you all. God Bless.

    - Lynda Carew

  6. RIP Jeff. Thanks for all the memories we shared together. Golf, Duck hunting, and many years of socializing. TAS

    - Thomas Selakovich

  7. The NGLGCSA Board of Directors extends their condolences to the Stran family for their loss. We extend our deepest sympathies, thoughts, and prayers to you all! May you all find peace with the passing of Jeff.

    - NGLGCSA Board of Directors

  8. Our sincere condolences to Jeff’s Mother, Joyce, his Brother Tim and his family, Beth, Emily and family & Charlie and family. We appreciated Jeff’s obituary and hope each of you find comfort in your many fond memories.
    John & Sandi Wilcox.

    - John & Sandi Wilcox

  9. Stran Family,
    Jeff was someone who could talk to anybody and make them feel important. The last couple weeks, I was able to go visit him and he still had his wit and we had a great conversation. He reminded me so much of my dad, Larry, and it was a blessing to have known Jeff. Thoughts and prayers to you all. Gone but never forgotten.

    - Tara

  10. My love goes out to Beth. Emily and Charley! Words can not express how sorry I am do the loss of your husband and father! He was so full of life, so happy and so loving! He was always willing to take us girls wherever our hearts desired, whether that be the planetarium, field museum, minocqua to the movies, Hard Rock Cafe, Six Flags Fright fest or every year to the B-Bash Pop concerts! Jeff will forever hold a special place In my heart! My thoughts go out to you all!! <3

    - Heather Van Strydonk

  11. Our sincere sympathies to Joyce, Tim & family, Beth, Emily & family, & Charlie & family. We appreciated the nice obituary with a bit of humor, and the condolences which showed what a good man Jeff was. We hope all of your fond memories will help you through this difficult time.
    John & Sandi Wilcox

    - John & Sandi Wilcox

  12. My deepest condolences to Jeff’s entire family.

    - David Schonback

  13. Dear Jeff’s Family,

    I remember Jeff from our days of growing up together at Gechohi and the many ways he showed leadership. Our lockers at both middle and high school were next to each other due to the last names being so close. Well, I have never been six feet and at the time ranged from 5’2 to maybe 5’4″. It just led to many conversations for kids. As we matured life did too and I will always remember Jeff in countless ways.
    My prayers for all of you are for peace and the love that Jeff gave you. Be blessed by memories and all that Jeff is. Peace.

    - Roger Spurgin

  14. So sorry to learn of Jeff,s passing. What a lot of good times were spent on the golf course and wetting a line with him over the years. Later on got to know his son Charley and brother Tim thru duck hunting in Arkansas and will always hold lifelong memories of those special times. My condolences to the family. RIP Jeff

    - Kevin McReynolds

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