James (Jim) H. Yanke, was born on December 16, 1941 to parents August and Faith (nee Wietor). in Milwaukee, WI, and died peacefully in Milwaukee at age 77 on November 25, 2019. He was the beloved husband of Ellen Yanke (nee Krueger) for 57 years. He was a loving father to daughter Laurie (Ray) Muffler, son Jim (Wendy) Yanke and Linda (Brian) Gmach. He was a proud grandpa of Michael, Cassie and Jimmy Muffler. He is also survived by siblings August, (Forrest), Mary (Bruce) True, Tony (Diane), and Mike.
He felt fortunate to have been in a career that he loved, and worked as a brakeman/conductor on the railroad, first on the Chicago & North Western Railway from 1960-1995, and then on the Union Pacific Railroad from 1995-2002. He was a passionate railroad historian, photographer and author of the 2009 book, “The Chicago & North Western's Air Line Subdivision.” He spent a lot of time photographing trains with son Jim, and was the best man at his wedding. He was involved with the Chicago and North Western Historical Society and enjoyed spending time with fellow railfans at the “Monday Night Slide Group That Met On Tuesdays.” He founded the Milwaukee Chapter of the Union Pacific Employee Club which engaged in volunteer work. He loved spending mornings with his “second family” at the River Shores YMCA.
Jim was a true gentleman, a mentor to many throughout his life, and always put others before himself. He was a wonderful human being.
Our deepest gratitude to the staff at St. Luke’s Hospital.
Visitation will be Monday, December 2 at St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church 1025 S. 7th St., West Bend from 10 AM until time of Funeral Mass at 11:30 AM.