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The Northwoods River News | Rhinelander, Wisconsin

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May 30, 2020

3/17/2020 7:30:00 AM
Earl Robert Cummings Sr.

Earl Robert Cummings Sr., age 93, passed away peacefully on Sunday March 15, 2020 while convalescing at the Green Bay Health Services facility under Hospice care. Earl (Chip) as born in Athelstane, Wis. on July 6, 1926 to Robert and Lillian (Makovsky) Cummings. He graduated from Wausaukee High School in 1943 in Wausaukee.

After high school, Earl worked in the local area of Athelstane in logging before becoming a member of the working staff at The Wausaukee Club: where he met the love of his life, Dolores (Leeson) Cummings. They were married in October 1949 and celebrated 66 years of marriage before the passing of Dolores in March 2016.

Earl was a dedicated and long-term employee (1949-1988) of Wisconsin Public Service as a lineman. Anyone who knew Earl (Chip) knew he took his job very seriously. Many a day and night during inclement weather, he braved the elements to restore power. Unlike today, the tools and equipment were limited. Earl's claim to fame, although he did not remind many, he climbed a pole for service work on his last workday, using his climbing hooks and belt. Not many years ago, his belt and hooks were kept from Chip to prevent his climbing of trees for trimming purposes.

Earl (Chip) and Dolores lived in Wausaukee, Crandon, Rhinelander and Apache Junction, Ariz. and most recently Green Bay. He and Dolores enjoyed their retirement immensely with summers spent on beautiful Lake Lucerne in Crandon and their winters in Apache Junction. Most recently, Earl resided at Moraine Ridge Assisted Living in Green Bay prior to his last days at the Green Bay Health Services facility.

Earl was a quiet person, kept to himself and was a devoted husband to his wife. He humbly acknowledged his service to his country (5th Army Infantry 1944-1946), was instrumental in nurturing Little League in Crandon in the 1950s and 60s, was a national horse-shoe pitching champion and, loved the Brewers and Packers unconditionally. A little-known fact, he taught Sunday School at the First United Methodist Church in Crandon.

When Earl was asked about his most remembered life events, in addition to meeting and marrying his wife. He remembered fondly playing baseball for the Wausaukee town team in the late 1940s, he recalled his Little League days in Crandon, his celebration of 25 and 50 years of marriage with family and friends, weekends and picnics at south beach of Lake Metonga in Crandon, the birth of his two grandchildren and his four great-grandchildren, his trips to the pits at the off-road races in Crandon and his attendance in recent years to the Pearly Gates Veteran's Ride along with his other WWII buddies.

Surviving Earl Sr. are his two sons Earl Jr. (Peg) Cummings of New Franken; Gerald (JoAnne) Cummings of Algoma; two grandchildren Jennifer (Justin) Massey of Luxemburg and Katie (Joel) Neumann of Green Bay; four great grandchildren Mikaela and Jacob Massey and Grayson and Lexi Neumann; Roberta Lindbeck (sister) of Iron River, Mich.; and several nieces and nephews.

Preceding him in death: wife, Dolores Cummings; daughter, Carol (Cummings) Spencer; two grandchildren Paul III and Colleen Spencer; parents, Bob and Lillian Cummings along with three brothers Ray, Lee and Lowell Cummings.

The family would like to thank all those caregivers at Moraine Ridge, Unity Hospice and those that offered comfort through prayers and messages over the past months. Once again, the spirit and unending value of coming from small communities in the great state of Wisconsin has proven to be of high value.

Private services will be for immediate family only with burial in Crandon. Online condolences may be left for the family at

Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, March 17, 2020
Article comment by: Jim Jacobus

I worked with earl for a lot of years at wps and am sorry to hear he passed. He will be missed a lot.

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