Virgene ‘Jean’ Havlik

Virgene “Jean” R. Havlik age 85, of Menomonie, died Monday July 12, 2021 at Mayo Clinic Health System-Red Cedar in Menomonie.

Virgene R Havlik 2Jean was born April 19, 1936, in Durand, WI. She was the daughter of Edwin and Hannah (Falkner) Achenbach and grew up on the family farm in rural Durand. She graduated from Durand High in 1954. She went onto college at U.W. Stout and graduated with a Home Economics Education Degree. Jean married Bill Havlik June 6, 1959, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Durand. After marriage they lived in River Falls for a short time. During this time, Jean received her Elementary Education Degree from U.W. River Falls.

Jean and Bill moved to Hillsboro, WI where she taught third grade at Hillsboro Elementary School until 1975. In 1975 they bought a hobby farm south of Menomonie where they raised sheep. Jean taught 4th grade at St. Joseph’s Elementary School five years.

She was a substitute teacher in the Menomonie School District into her retirement. Throughout her career, she inspired many young people. Her passion for teaching manifested in many areas of her life, including 4H, Girl Scouts, and sewing. Sewing and tailoring were two of her special talents. She especially enjoyed helping friends and family fit wedding and bridesmaid dresses.

Jean is survived by four daughters, Jane (Edd) Hanke of Menomonie, Beth (Jim) Ernst of Burnsville, MN, Lynn (Charlie) Batten of Camp Douglas, Jill (Todd) Wolterstorff of Londonderry, OH; five grandchildren, Amanda (Dustin) Grover, Lauren Hanke, Matthew and Chuck Ernst, William (Keziah) Batten; six great grandchildren, Jaxon Hanke, Rowan Grover, Finnegan & Seamus Ernst, Stephen & Violet Batten; several nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

She is preceded in death by her parents, husband Bill in 2018; a brother, Patrick Achenbach and a sister, Rometta Hock.

Funeral services will be 11:00 AM Tuesday July 20, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Menomonie wit Rev. John Mano officiating.

Visitation will be held from 4:00 to 7:00 PM Monday at the Rhiel Funeral Home in Menomonie and one hour prior to services at the church on Tuesday.

Condolences to the family may be made online at

Rhiel Funeral Home & Cremation Services of Menomonie is serving the family.