Rodney Franklin Hughes, 94, of Green Bay, WI. Beloved husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, brother, and friend, passed into the arms of God November 7, 2021, to join his wife Charlotte. Born to Frank Hughes and Helen Hughes (Stinson) on May 21, 1927 in Camden, NJ. Rodney enlisted in the Navy at age 17 and served throughout World War II on many Naval ships in the South Pacific and as a radar man. In his later days he was recognized for his service and was invited, along with his daughter, to join a commemorative trip to Washington D.C. on the Old Glory Honor Flight. Rodney returned home to finish high school, attended Glassboro State Teachers College, played college football and earned a degree in teaching. He found it did not suit him well and he moved to Minneapolis, MN to work for Liberty Mutual Insurance Company. He went in for a medical exam and met Charlotte Olson, who worked as a nurse. He made an excuse about a special pen he must have left there and asked her on a date and it was true love. They were married February 28, 1953. That’s the beginning of the Hughes family story.
Rodney retired from Liberty Mutual in 1988 after advancing in the company and being transferred from Minneapolis where their three children were born, to Lansing, MI, Rockford, IL, Richfield, MN, back to the twin cities and eventually to Green Bay, WI. This was the last stop for them. Rodney and Charlotte took their family on many camping trips all over the country to see God’s awesomeness. Later they purchased property in Wausaukee, WI where many fond memories were made. After retiring, Rodney volunteered for many years with Brown County Social Services. Accompanied by his wife, Charlotte, he drove children all over the county. He also volunteered by driving vets to the Milwaukee VA Hospital. Whenever Social Services requested his help he was there to do so and was so appreciated with awards. Later in life he and Charlotte found time for regular road trips and travels overseas. As Rod and Char’s family grew, they made a special effort to be present in the lives of their grand- and great grandchildren, rarely missing a school performance or sporting event. Rod was a strong and competitive tennis player, enjoyed long drives, and was always on the go. He had a tenacity for life and determination of will that carried him, even after a variety of health issues arose. No one ever questioned his work ethic and it was one of his many gifts to his children, alongside a strong sense of faith, and keeping a keen eye open for opportunities to help neighbors and friends alike. Rodney was an animal lover and took a great interest in cultivating loving relationships with the family’s many four-legged companions.
Rodney is survived by his three children: Lynn, Steve (Cindy), and Nancy Hughes. Nine grandchildren: Ben (Gretel), Jessie (Chris), Nicki (Dave), Brian, Becky (Joel), Zach (Becky), Dustin, Andria (Kyler), and Mathew. Eleven great grandchildren: Draeden, Yarrow, Prudence, Rohan, Stella, Abram, Harris, Blake, Lily, Charlotte, and Annabelle.
He was preceded in death by his parents, brothers (Don and Norman), aunts and uncles, his beloved wife Charlotte, and his grandson, Simon Spulak.
Family and friends are welcome to join us with celebration of his life December 4, 2021 at Incarnation Church 2071 9th St., Green Bay, WI 54304, officiated by Pastor Ralph Hankermeyer. Per Rod’s wishes he will be cremated. Visitation with family to occur at 1pm and service to occur at 2pm.
The family would like to thank all the staff at Woodside Villa II, Unity Hospice, Pastor Steve, Connie and Tom at Woodside Oaks for their compassionate efforts in going above and beyond to make Rodney and family comfortable amidst the challenges faced in his final days.