Peter Kaiser 1943-2015
Kaiser, Peter Peter Erlin Kaiser, 72, died on December 4, 2015 at his home on Big Fork Lake in Three Lakes, Wisconsin, surrounded by his children and loving caregivers. He was born on March 1, 1943 in Kenosha, Wisconsin to John and Emmeline Kaiser. Pete grew up in Kenosha, graduated from Wayland Academy in Beaver Dam, and attended college in McPherson, Kansas, earning his Bachelor's degree in 1967. He later received 2 Master's degrees in History (1968) and Business Management (1972). He served in the US Air Force from 1968 to 1972. Pete was a mentor, a teacher, an innovator, a motivator, an entrepreneur, a leader, and a friend. He believed that it was OK to make mistakes, as long as you learned from them. He had an eye for identifying people's strengths and a passion for helping to build upon them. Pete merged his keen business sense with his passion for people by founding Kaiser Group, Inc., in 1979. The business grew over the years in different directions, but kept its focus on consulting, workforce development, and organizational improvement. He remained CEO of Kaiser Group until he retired at the end of 2011. Pete highly valued volunteer work and he served in leadership positions for multiple organizations including but not limited to: the Aqua Devils Ski Club, the Wiesbaden American Ski Club, YMCA, United Way, Elmbrook Church, National Association of Workforce Development, First Christian Church of Merritt Island, and the Three Lakes Center for the Arts. Other activities he enjoyed in his free time were snow skiing, water skiing, boating, playing bridge, and cribbage. It was through his association with United Way in Milwaukee that he met Patty Murphy, and they were married in 1995. They moved to Merritt Island, FL in 2002 and enjoyed many sunrises at their home on Sykes Creek. In 2012, when Pete and Patty were just beginning to chart the course of their retirement years, they were blindsided by Patty's diagnosis of pancreatic cancer. Pete attacked this new challenge with his usual tenacity, looking for solutions at every turn. When they finally accepted that a solution was not to be found, Pete turned all of his energies to being a loving and devoted caregiver to Patty, until her death on November 12, 2012. Soon after, Pete left Merritt Island, Florida and returned to the Kaiser family cottage in Three Lakes. Although he was already aware of his pulmonary fibrosis diagnosis and was experiencing new physical limitations, he continued to find ways to channel his generosity. He focused on improving the family cottage so it could be enjoyed by his children in the future, and shared his business savvy with local businesses in order to strengthen their position for the future as well. Pete's addresses included Wiesbaden, Germany, cities in and around the Milwaukee area, northern Indiana, and the Atlantic coast of Florida, but Three Lakes was his true home, and that is where he wanted to leave his legacy. Pete is survived by sons Jacob and Joseph (Trenton), daughters Emily (Steve) and Kimberly (Troy), grandchildren Elise (Lincoln) and Charlie, and numerous nieces and nephews. He will be greatly missed by his "furry kids", Crash and Daisy. In addition to his parents, Peter was preceded in death by his wife Patty, his sister Joanne Bush, his brother John Kaiser Jr., and nephew Henry "Hu" Bush. .