A Family Funeral Home

Neil DeClerk

May 9, 1925 - June 5, 2024
Racine, WI



Wednesday, July 3, 2024
11:00 AM CDT
Southern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery
21731 Spring St.
Union Grove, WI 53182

Life Story / Obituary


Neil A. DeClerk, died on Wednesday, June 5, 2024, at the age of 99. He was born in Moline, Illinois on May 9, 1925, son of the late August and Cora “Dot” (Nee: Smith) DeClerk. Mr. DeClerk and Catherine Lohmann were married on June 14, 1947, while Neil was a student at St. Ambrose College in Davenport, Iowa. He completed his studies at that institution, graduated in 1949 and later took graduate courses at The University of Wisconsin Milwaukee.

During WWII Neil was a tall gunner on a B-17 in the Eighth Air Force. His plane was shot down during the Battle of the Bulge in 1944. The crew disbanded but Neil stayed to complete his tour of 30 combat missions. He attained the rank of Staff Sergeant and was awarded the Air Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters.

After the war and graduation from college Neil first worked in the family business. In 1960 S.C. Johnson brought him to Racine and for the next 30 years he held a variety of marketing positions, ending his career in 1991 directing Global Business Research for Johnson’s Professional Division. In that job he traveled extensively, working in 25 countries to help them develop the knowledge they needed to better define their problems and opportunities and plan for the future.

After retirement Mr. DeClerk resumed an earlier interest in painting and for several years painted at Wustum Museum where he was a long-time member. Neil was an avid if not particularly skilled golfer and for over 30 years had been a member of Kenosha Country Club. He continued golfing with a senior group until he was 91. He was also a member of several historical and cultural associations.

Neil is survived by his daughter, Diane DeClerk in Franksville, as well as his sister Blanche McDonough in Prescott Arizona. In addition to his parent’s, he was preceded in death by his wife, Catherine.

Interment with Full Military Honors will be held at 11:00 am, Wednesday, July 3, 2024 at the Southern Wisconsin Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery, town of Dover.