A Family Funeral Home

James Russell Raab

May 17, 1953 - April 21, 2024
Racine, WI


Celebration of Jim's Life

Saturday, July 27, 2024
12:00 PM to 5:00 PM CDT
Fifth Street Yacht Club
761 Marquette St.
Racine, WI 53404


At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.

Racine County Food Bank
2000 Dekoven Ave
Racine, WI 53403
Web Site

Life Story / Obituary


On April 21, 2024, James R. Raab, aged 70, passed away peacefully at his home in Racine, Wisconsin.

Born on May 17, 1953, Jim's life was one marked by creativity, community, and a boundless generosity of spirit.

Jim was the master craftsman behind Dovetail Woodworking Studio for more than four decades, having taken the reins from his friend, Mike Wilfer, in 1981, under his hands, Jim continued to transform Dovetail into a local institution. His custom furniture wasn’t just made but crafted, a reflection of his belief that every piece of wood has a story worth telling. His passion for woodworking extended to his family, as he cherished spending time in the shop working on projects with his son, brothers, friends, and grandchildren. The Shop was a refuge for tradespeople, artists, and craftsmen alike. It was more than just a place of work—it was a hub of camaraderie, where stories and laughter were shared over cold beers after a day's work.

Jim’s artistic expression wasn’t confined to woodworking. As the charismatic singer for Home Cooking, he brought life to many nights at the Main Place Hotel. His voice, much like his craftsmanship, touched the hearts of all who listened.

In addition to his craftsmanship and musical talents, Jim was deeply committed to his community including the Scouts. He served diligently on the board of directors for the Racine County Food Bank and spearheaded the Racine Thoughts for Food event. His generous spirit was a beacon of hope and action.

Jim leaves behind his wife Brenda Raab, his son Justin Raab, his grandchildren (Chase, Archer, Barett, Owen & Simon), his sisters Mary Anne Mcintosh, and Sheri Lopez, as well as countless friends and admirers. He was predeceased by his siblings Sue Baker, and Richard “Ricky” Raab.

Let’s raise a glass to Jim, a man who lived fully, loved deeply, and left behind a world better than he found it. His songs, his art, his poems, and his kindness continue to resonate. Rest well, Jim, knowing your melody lingers on.

In lieu of flowers, contributions to the Racine County Food Bank would honor Jim's legacy of giving. Per Jim's request and last wishes a celebration of life will be held at the Fifth Street Yacht Club, 761 Marquette St., Saturday, July 27, 2024, from Noon until 5:00 pm.