Life Story / Obituary
Porter Venn, 81 of Racine Wisconsin passed away on November 17th, 2021, after contracting double pneumonia with complications due to heart disease.
If you asked a hundred people who Porter William Venn II was, they’d all give you a different story: an Air Force pilot, a CPA, a Stamp Collector, a Collector of Cats, a Volunteer, an enemy of weeds, a Husband, a Father, a Brother, an Uncle, a Friend.
Porter was all these things, but at his core, he was a storyteller.
Porter lived in the moment, and then he shared these moments with friends and relatives spinning yarns of his experiences whether they happened yesterday, or 50 years ago. His stories were often sprinkled with humor and typically with an eye rolling punchline.
He was born in Dayton Ohio on December 21, 1939, the oldest son of Lucille and Robert Venn. Later his family moved to Southern Florida and then Northern Illinois. When he was a boy his grandfather, Porter Venn the first, took him and his younger brothers on grand train trips across the continent from Chicago to the West Coast and back. His father, Robert Venn, was a groundbreaking entrepreneur who gave Porter a unique upbringing around Miami. After high school he enrolled at the University of Florida before deciding to change things by joining the Air Force.
After his stint in the Aviation Cadets, he became a navigator bombardier on B52s. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, he flew "chrome dome" 24-hour missions over the arctic circle and Europe. Later he became a pilot and flew C-130s and coordinated rescue missions in Vietnam and later stateside, earning the Distinguished Flying Cross.
While in the Air Force and stationed in Oscoda Michigan, Porter met the love of his life, Marjorie Makowski, a teacher working in Oscoda. They were later married in Valdosta Georgia on February 6th, 1965.
After earning his graduate degree at Florida State University, he did cost analysis for Air Force weapon development. After 20 years in the Air Force, he retired and became the Chief of Treasury for Prince George's county in Maryland, moving his family to Calvert County Maryland in 1979. He also started an accounting business, Amlin & Venn with a friend from the Air Force, he and Maggie raised two sons, Porter Venn III and Aaron Venn.
After his second retirement in 1999, he and Maggie moved to Racine, Wisconsin. Someone like Porter never really retires, though. He joined Preservation Racine and became its Treasurer. He worked as a volunteer for Racine Police Department and worked for a year for the 2010 U.S. Census. He resumed his learning of the Russian language which had been a passion after a trip to Russia.
Most notably he continued his lifelong hobby of collecting stamps and postal stationary which included his membership in and becoming treasurer of the United Postal Stationary Society. This eventually led to starting the “Post Road Company” with his son Aaron and daughter-in-law Heather, a business that sells collectible stamps online.
Porter is survived by his wife Maggie, sons Porter, Aaron and Heather Venn, and grandson Gordon. He is also survived by brothers Robert Venn, James Venn, Reece Hart and Garrison Venn.
His Burial will be at Memorial Park Cemetery in Skokie, Illinois.