Donald J. Lilla, age 76, of Winona, passed away on Sunday, February 2, 2020, at Lake Winona Manor.
He was born on December 13, 1943, in Forest River Township, North Dakota, to Lambert and Aurelia (Peplinski) Lilla, and honorably served his country with the United States Navy during the Vietnam War. He was united in marriage with Margaret “Peggy” (Nagle) Oevering on February 21, 2000.
Don was employed in maintenance with Lake Center/TRW in Winona, for 38 years, where he was a member of UAW 958, serving as its chairperson, shop steward, and CAP chair. As CAP chair, he was involved in politics, going to Washington DC on many occasions – he was a true DFLer.
He was a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Pine Creek, the Knights of Columbus, the Winona Civic Club, and was a former member of the Dodge Sportsmen’s Club. Don enjoyed golfing and was a member of leagues at Westfield in Winona, and the Lewiston Country Club, and he also bowled in many different leagues. His love for fishing was superseded by none.
In his later years, his love was his wife, and they enjoyed going gambling, cooking, and collecting antiques. His only regret was that he didn’t spend enough time with his kids and grandchildren, and his love for them never fully shown.
Don is lovingly survived by his wife, Peggy, Winona; children: Kimberly (Ed) Nelson, Buffalo, MN; Brian (Anita), Galesville, WI; Bert, Fountain City, WI; Robin, Winona; step-children: Kelly (Christine) Oevering, Eagle River, AK, and Kathleen (Roger) Leistikow, St. Charles, MN; grandchildren: Nicole (Josh) Knutson, Alexandra Pomeroy, Ashley Pomeroy, Nicholas Lilla, Mason Lilla, Bradley Lilla, Carson Lilla, Mitchell Leistikow, Sydney Leistikow, and Samantha Leistikow; great-grandchildren: Natalie, Andrew, and Evelynn-Rose Pomeroy; sisters: La Donna Teske and Kathryn (David) Kramer; in-laws: Mary Lou Frey, Robert (Deborah) Nagle, Tom (Becky) Nagle, Jack (Linda) Nagle, Richard (Laurie) Nagle, Kevin Nagle, and David Kujak; goddaughter: Heidi Teske; his special dog, Bailey; as well as nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; son, Adam; grandson, Zach Lilla; sister: Jacqueline Kujak; brother: John Lilla; brothers-in-law: Francis Teske, George Frey, and Rich Kujak.
Visitation will be held from 4 PM until 7 PM on Thursday, February 6, 2020, at the Watkowski-Mulyck Funeral Home, where the recitation of the Most Holy Rosary will be held at 6:45 PM. Visitation will also be held from 11 AM until the Mass of Christian Burial at 12 Noon on Friday, February 7, 2020, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Pine Creek, WI. The Reverend Sebastian Kolodziejczyk will officiate. Don will be laid to rest in the church cemetery with military honors.
Pallbearers will be: Mason, Bradley, Carson, and Nicholas Lilla; and Mitchell Leistikow. The honorary pallbearers will be: Allie and Ashley Pomeroy, and Sydney and Samantha Leistikow.
Online condolences or memories may be left for Don’s family at www.watkowski-mulyck.com.
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