Robert Arthur “Bob” Ristau

Robert Arthur “Bob” Ristau

Robert Arthur “Bob” Ristau, of Stoughton, beloved husband, father, grandfather, man of God and friend, went to be with the Lord on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020, from the Skaalen Heritage Center. He was born in Appleton, on Feb. 19, 1928, to Arthur and Marie Ristau.

If you were fortunate to have known him, you knew he was a man of integrity. He was a life-long Christian and his faith was strong. He was a great friend who knew how to encourage and bring out the best in people and see the good in life.

Bob believed in the value of education. He received three degrees through the University of Wisconsin-Madison (BBA, MEd, PhD). He gave many years to teaching at the high school level and was a college professor and administrator at Eastern Michigan University. Over the years he had many articles published, authored, or co-authored several business textbooks and received many recognitions for his contributions including earlier work for high school vocational education.

He believed in family, was kind and loving with a heart of gold. He married his high school sweetheart, Caryl Brown, celebrating 48 years of marriage before her death in 1999. He married the second love of his life, Jean Thompson, in 2001. He loved his daughters, Nancy Holihan (Steve), Susan Haugen (David), Barb Nees (Jeff) and his stepdaughter, Barbara Lawrence (Dick) and between Bob and Jean there are 11 grandchildren, 23 great grandchildren, and seven great-great-grandchildren. He also touched many other children’s lives through programs such as AWANA and his magic shows.

Bob believed in the local church. He was raised Lutheran and gave many years to the Methodist Church and Evangelical Free Church, and eventually returned to the Lutheran Church. He was active as a Sunday School teacher, choir member, lay speaker, Bible study leader and friend.

Bob enjoyed sports, whether it was playing baseball, golf or racquetball, coaching cross country, or cheering for one of his favorite teams. He enjoyed travelling with his family and through many business opportunities. Bob was a member of many organizations including Delta Pi Epsilon, Administrative Management Society, National Business Education Association, Michigan Economic Education Council and International Society for Business Education.

Bob got so much out of life and gave back in service to others in many, many ways.

Friends and family are invited to an outdoor drive through visitation at Gunderson Stoughton Funeral and Cremation Care, 1358 Highway 51 N. at Jackson St., Stoughton, from 8:30- 10 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. A private family service will be held. Family and friends who wish to view the services via livestream may visit Bob’s obituary page at and click on the Watch Webcast link at 11 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. A private burial will be held at Roselawn Memorial Park.

Memorials in his name can be made to the Skaalen Heritage Center or First Lutheran Church in Stoughton. Online condolences may be made at

Gunderson Stoughton

Funeral & Cremation Care

1358 Highway 51 N. at Jackson St.

(608) 873-4590