Craig V. Lehmeier, 63, of Independence, died Wednesday, January 17, 2018 at Gundersen Health System in La Crosse, Wis. after a sudden illness. Craig was born October 11, 1954, in La Crosse, to Jerry and Marie (Gartner) Lehmeier. Attending Winona Senior High School, Craig graduated in 1973 alongside his best friend, Mike Bauer. He attended the University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire for both his undergraduate degree in Music Education (1977) and his Masters Degree in Conducting (1988). Craig was an accomplished musician from a young age and became a third generation music teacher when he began his first job in New Richland, Minn. This started his thirty-eight year career as a band director and teacher of music to fifth graders thru college level with hundreds of children and adults. He married the love of his life, Pamela Young, April 10th, 1993 in Winona, Minn.. As “Team Lehmeier”, they oversaw the Eau Claire Municipal Band for twenty-one summers - with Craig conducting and Pam performing and overseeing personnel. Their love of music and sharing their talents with others was only overshadowed by their love for one another. A camping, photography, boating, fountain pen, classic movie, and collector of classic vinyl records enthusiast, he was also known for his kind heart and helpful spirit in the community at large. He will be missed by many. Craig is survived by his wife, Pamela of Independence; three sisters, Karen Lehmeier of Verlin, France, Kathryn Lehmeier and her friend Mark Petersen of Palm Harbor, Fla. and Carla Lehmeier-Tatum and her husband Mark Tatum of Albuquerque, N.M.; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Debbie and Jesse Ball of Rochester, Minn.; extended special family, Sam Backman of Norman, Okla. and Yu-Yu Chu of Taiwan. He is further survived by aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins. Craig was preceded in death by his parents. Memorial services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, January 27, 2018 at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Strum, Wis. Visitation will be held 4-7 p.m. Friday at Edison Funeral Home, Independence, and one hour prior to services Saturday at Immanuel Lutheran Church.
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