Stephen Walter Groff

Stephen Walter Groff, 71, former Brookfield resident, died on July 14, 2015. 

Born in Chicago on March 27, 1944, Mr. Groff’s family moved to Brookfield when he was 11 years old. He graduated from Riverside-Brookfield High School, and attended the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point, joined the United States Marine Corps, completed a trade school, and became an electrician. He belonged to the IBEW and Local 134. 

He loved being outdoors. Golfing, bike riding, cross country skiing, and playing basketball were favorite activities. In his younger years, he owned a wooden boat and enjoyed slalom waterskiing, boating, camping, and all types of fishing—lake, smelt, salmon, and ice. He would spend time on Lake Michigan and on the lakes in Wisconsin. 

Pheasant hunting with his dad and the family dog, Chips, was also a favorite pastime. In his later years, he enjoyed taking his dog, Molly, to Bemis Woods to let her run on the long leash, and sitting on the front stoop talking with people. He was very social and made friends everywhere he went. He took the time to get to know people in the community, to share his life, to listen about theirs, to tell jokes, and to genuinely care. He was kind, generous, humble, and proud. 

Mr. Groff spent the last year of his life living in California to be near his daughter and granddaughter, who are very grateful for that time together. At the University of Wisconsin, he met the love of his life, Ruth. They married and have one daughter, Elizabeth. 

Although they divorced, they remained loving and supportive friends. He has one granddaughter, Isabella; two sisters, Wendy Garvin and Pamela (Mike) West; and five nieces and nephews. 

Visitation will be held at Johnson Funeral Home, 3847 Prairie Ave. in Brookfield, on Saturday, Aug. 29 from 1 to 3 p.m. with a memorial service at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Disabled American Veterans ( or the Purple Heart Foundation (