The gardens in heaven bloomed with color on May 9, 2022, when Bruce (Buzz) John Weiland made his journey home. A gentle and kind man, Bruce was from Kimberly, Wisconsin. He was born on February 19, 1949.
Growing up, Bruce went to Holy Name Catholic School (now Holy Spirit) and graduated from Kimberly High School in 1967. He would tell you he had a “great childhood.” Growing up on Washington Street and a member of the Washington Street Gang, he loved being involved with the Kimberly Recreation Association. On a spring or summer day, you would have found him playing basketball behind the junior high or playing hardball in the PeeWee Cub League. There was time spent in Cub Scouts and later Boy Scouts where he served in the Order of the Arrow. Time at the Gardner Dam Boy Scouts Camp had special memories for him. As a Papermaker, he was involved in football, basketball, tennis and two high school plays, Ah Wilderness and The Blackboard Jungle. Attending UW-Whitewater after high school, he was a member of the Phi Sigma Epsilon fraternity. It was during this time he served as a member of Wisconsin’s National Guard.
Community and friendship brought joy to Bruce. His FVTC community provided not only employment for 34 years serving students through Student Employment Services and as a faculty member, but created life-long friendships. Bruce took great pride in serving on the Board of Directors for Capital Credit Union for 34 years and he enjoyed the trips that came along with that role. Also, being a Special Olympics coach for four years brought him great happiness. There was the “Kimberly Group -- my Kimberly buddies who I had 60 years of togetherness, sharing love, caring and friendship along with many fishing trips.” More recently, three groups brought special memories: the ceramics group of ladies who always made him feel at home, St. Edward’s Harvest Moon Committee and Men of Faith.
Who knew that FVTC would also connect two hearts that would build a love of 22 years? Bruce and Vicky were married on March 16, 2014 at St. Paul’s chapel and March 22, 2014 in Negril, Jamaica surrounded by 65 friends and family from the USA and 18 Jamaican friends. What a beautiful love story it was! The love story began in 1999 and was a life adventure full of laughter, faith, social gatherings, and travel. He was proud of his home and the gardens he nurtured. His work yielded a beautiful, enchanted setting that was enjoyed by all who visited for social gatherings including a garden tour and time feeding the fish in his pond. Bruce and Vicky believed in the importance of paying it forward creating a passion for making life a little better for others. Negril, Jamaica was not only their favorite place to visit, but over the years they made friends who became their Jamaican family. They raised funds and led countless group service trips to help St. Anthony’s Food Kitchen in Negril, to repair rural school buildings and advance youth education programs.
Family was at the core of what Bruce valued. He was proud of his children and grandchildren. He loved being part of their activities and lives. He is survived by his wife, Vicky Weiland; children Brian Weiland, Jaime (Michael) Reider and Nicole (Cory) Schultz; stepchildren, Mandi (Mike) Bytnar and Rachel (Jesse) Guyette. There was a sparkle in his eye when he spent time with his grandchildren, Michael Reider Jr., Isabelle Reider, Amelia Schultz, Madelyn Schultz, Matthew Bytnar, Mary Bytnar and Alex Andrekus. Bruce is survived by his siblings David (Jackie) Weiland, Mike (Pat) Weiland, Mary Weiland and Kathy Weiland; father-in-law Marvin (Duke) Duchrow, sister-in-laws, Cheri Duchrow, Marlene (Jeff) Ver Voort; brother-in-law Steve (Janet Berkes) Duchrow. He is further survived by many friends and family, including Anne Weiland (mother of his children), nieces and a nephew, godchildren, the Kimberly group, his fraternity buddies, Men of Faith group, and his Jamaican family. Bruce was preceded in death by his parents, Leo and Frances Weiland, brother, Dan Weiland, and mother-in-law, Florence Duchrow as well as his good friend, Dave (Bear) Balliett.
Bruce’s life will be celebrated with a visitation at Valley Funeral Home, 2211 N. Richmond Street, Appleton, on Sunday, May 22nd, from 4:00-7:00 p.m. There will be a prayer service at 6:30 p.m. The Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Edward Catholic Church, N2926 WI-47, Mackville on Monday, May 23rd, at 11:00 a.m., with visitation beginning at 9:00 a.m. Burial will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution to VIDA, Pillars in Appleton, or Kathy’s House in Milwaukee.
Bruce’s family would like to express their appreciation and gratitude to Dr. Yao, Molly Schumacher, Mel Smits, Allison Kraus, and his entire oncology team at ThedaCare. Each person from the receptionists to the nurses and staff in the lab and infusion areas showed kindness always. You are all angels, including the 7th floor nursing staff at AMC!
Bruce – You made me a better person and loved me unconditionally. You made my dreams come true. I will hold you in my heart always. I love you! Vicky