Roger R. Otten, 93, of Sheboygan, went home to his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on September 28, 2023, at Sharon Richardson, surrounded by his wife and family. Roger was born May 10, 1930, in Sheboygan, WI to Martin and Minnie Otten. He attended Sheboygan Christian School from 1936-1944 and graduated from North High in 1948. After one year at Calvin College, Roger started his grocery career at his father’s business, Otten Grocery Store. He was drafted into the army in 1951 and served during the Korean War until 1953. One of the highlights of his military career was going on the Honor Flight to Washington DC, with his son Russ, in 2022. Three months after his military discharge he married Audrey Ann Kruis on January 27, 1954. They were married for almost 70 years and she was “the sunshine of his life”. Roger’s career as a meat cutter and meat manager, to various Sheboygan grocery stores, spanned almost 40 years. After retirement he worked part time for 17 years at WindMill Woodworking.
Roger was known for how much he loved his God, his family, his church and his community. Roger counted it a privilege to serve the Sheboygan community as an Alderman for 8 years and as a County Board Supervisor for 32 years, serving on various committees. After 40 years, he retired at the age of 90!! Roger and Audrey were blessed to travel the US and abroad while creating great memories with many dear friends. They even found an Otten grocery store when visiting relatives in the Netherlands. Roger and Audrey were always looking for ways to make people feel welcome. They enjoyed hosting game nights, sharing potlucks with friends and playing a weekly game of Rummikub together at their kitchen table.
Roger was active in his church choir, men’s prayer breakfast and serving as Elder, Sunday school teacher and superintendent. Many Sunday afternoons he brought the message of hope to the local jail and various nursing homes. Roger considered it a privilege and blessing to correspond, through Crossroads Prison Ministry, with incarcerated men across the US for over 24 years. Roger and Audrey enjoyed visiting the shut-ins and meeting new people at Christ Community Church and the community of Sheboygan. They thought of many different groups as “family”- Y early morning swimmers, McDonald’s breakfast group and most recently their Mapledale neighbors. Many of them becoming special friends.
Roger loved watching his kids, grandkids and great grandkids in all their sport activities (always coaching from the sidelines) and school events. The entire family knows and enjoys how to be competitive - this started with Jarts and their annual family Thanksgiving bowling. Roger and Audrey prayed daily for their children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Roger is survived by his loving wife, Audrey and their six children: Cindy (Jay) Hogfeldt, Russ (Laura) Otten, Scott (Pam) Otten, Jeff (Dawn) Otten, Chery (Rick) Locke, adopted son Mma Arua (Nena) Kalu; 23 grandchildren and 42 great grandchildren- Nadia (Aaron)Lunt: Tristan, Andrew, Lucas; Jason (Amber) Hogfeldt: Addi, JJ, Seneca, Jett, Keaston; Matt (Liz) Hogfeldt: Jackson, Juliana, Penelope, Eloise; Greg (Kari) Hogfeldt: Aspen, Canyon, Wynter; Sulah (Jacob) Buck: Tatum, Taylor; Brittany (Tom) VanDerHave: Thomas, Noah, Sadie; Marques Otten; Kasia Otten(deceased): Riley; Cade Whitman; Phoenix Otten; Nathan (Lynae) Otten: Brooklyn, Addyson, Caleb; Jake (Alyssa) Otten: Logan, Micah, Nolan; Ben Otten; Ryan (Cherith) Otten; Heidi (Zach) TeWinkel: Braden, Tyler, Lucas; Heather (Josh) Eshuis: Levi, Micah, Brooklyn; David (Erica) Locke: Ella, Lincoln, Noelle; Amanda (Jason) Hilbelink: Wesley, Charlotte, Everett; Josh (Alexis) Locke: Dakoda, Sierra; Natalie Locke; Nene (Paul) Schaffert, Emmanuel (Ngozi) Kalu: Amara; James Kalu. Roger is also survived by sisters-in-law, Harriet Farwell, Mona Otten and many nephews and nieces. Roger was preceded in death by his parents, two sisters: Marge and Eunice and one brother: Jim.
The celebration of Roger’s entry into his heavenly home will be held at Christ Community Church, 428 Geele Ave, Sheboygan at Noon on Saturday, October 7, 2023. The family will receive visitors at the church on Friday, October 6, 2023 from 4-7pm and again on Saturday from 11am-12pm.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts are requested by the family for Sheboygan Christian School and Christ Community Church.
Roger celebrated the hope he had because of Jesus saving grace and wanted everyone to know “Jesus Paid It All”.