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Updated: 07/20/2014 08:00:00AM

Ronald James Olson

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Ronald James “Ron” Olson, 66, of Onalaska, Wis., and Placida, Fla., passed away peacefully Saturday, July 12, 2014, surrounded by his family at his home in Onalaska.

Ron was born Nov. 8, 1947, in La Crosse, Wis., to Leonard and Beverly (nee Erickson) Olson.

He was honorably discharged from the U.S. Army in 1967. Ron was joined in marriage to Joan Bakko on Nov. 11, 1967, most recently celebrating 46 years together. Ron spent his career as a Sales Engineer at Northern Engraving. He served his community as an Onalaska volunteer firefighter for 16 years, most notably as the assistant fire chief. He was a proud member of the American Legion, most recently Post 113 of Rotonda West, Fla.

Prior to their passing, Ron found great joy in his two dogs, Ari and Teki. His pastimes were many over the years, including camping, snowmobiling, golfing, boating, model cars and model trains. He was a devoted Husband, Father, Grandfather and Great-Grandfather. He loved his Green Bay Packers, and enjoyed watching NASCAR races and taking Caribbean cruises. Upon retirement, Ron and Joan enjoyed wintering in their home in Placida, Fla. Ron loved to spend time with his family, and especially his grandchildren.

Ron is survived by his wife, Joan; children, Scott Olson of Onalaska, Eric (Lori) Olson of Onalaska, and Nicole (Jim) Guzowski of Rotonda West; his sister, Barb (Ed) Burrell of Stoddard, Wis.; brother, Larry (Ruth) Olson of Onalaska; brother-in-law, George Bakko Jr.; grandchildren, Tyler (Lacy) Dahlgren of San Diego, Calif., Kylie and Kirah Olson of Onalaska, and Ilana and Lexi Guzowski of Rotonda West; great-grandchildren, Adam and Ella Dahlgren of San Diego; and many cousins, nieces, nephews and many, many dear friends from both Onalaska and Placida — too numerous to mention. Ron will be sadly missed by all who knew him. He was preceded in death by his parents; his mother-in-law and father-in-law, Eunice and George Bakko Sr.; and his sister-in-law, June Bakko.

Friends and family are cordially invited to a celebration of Ron’s life from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, 2014, at the American Legion on Sand Lake Road in Onalaska.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to be distributed according to Ron’s wishes. In order to facilitate delivery, memorials may be sent to: Dickinson Family Funeral Home, 1425 Jackson St., La Crosse, WI 54601, and they will be directed to the family for distribution. Please visit to share online condolences and for more information.

The family would like to express their gratitude to Gundersen Hospice in La Crosse, and to Tidewell Hospice in Englewood, Fla.

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