John J. Fury

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MIDDLETON–John J. Fury, 71, of Middleton, died April 18, 2020, in Madison, following a stroke. He was separated from his loving family during his illness due to Covid-19 restrictions.

John grew up in Janesville, MN, the son of John and Ruth (Hendricksen) Fury. His sense of humor was the magnet that drew Mary Johnson to John, telling herself in eighth grade, that one day she would marry this guy. They married on Nov. 7, 1969, at St. Ann’s Catholic Church, in Janesville, MN,  and celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary this past November in the presence of their children, son-in-law and grandchildren. John’s sense of humor was on full display during this memorable evening.

John’s strong work ethic and entrepreneurship began at the early age of nine when he delivered newspapers in his hometown. His earnings more often than not were spent on others, e.g. buying his younger brother a bicycle for his birthday, penny candy for children on his route and a transistor radio for his parents.

John graduated from the Mankato Area Vocational-Technical Institute in Architectural Drafting in May 1969. He began working with Wick Building Systems in April 1970, which gave him the knowledge and drive to start his own business as a building contractor. Badgerland Building Systems, Inc. began in 1979, specializing in commercial steel buildings. John continued as owner/operator of BBSI until his retirement in 2010, when his son David took over the business. John’s integrity as a businessman was appreciated by his many customers and sub-contractors. 

John valued most his faith, family and friends. He always made it a priority to attend all events involving his children and grandchildren and made frequent trips back to his hometown to visit his mother, siblings and high school classmates. He had a love for classic cars and owned a few through the years. He was a strong supporter of UW Athletics and the Mendota Gridiron Club. His favorite hobby was woodworking. He made several treasured projects for his grandchildren, e.g. wooden rocking horses and rocking motorcycles, a doll house and many wooden cars and trucks.

John’s favorite place to go to relax from the stress of his work was to the Fury Family Cabin. He referred to it as his “heaven on earth” and his many hours spent mowing the grass on his tractor or lawnmower as his “shrink time.” He loved being outdoors up there, observing all the birds, turkey, deer and other wildlife as well as walking or riding on the trails searching the woods for mushrooms, wildflowers and antler sheds. John spent Sunday mornings at the cabin listening to Elvis Gospel Music. Trips to the cabin were often filled with other family and friends gathering there creating many fond memories.

When John was recuperating at home prior to his stroke, he wrote his grandchildren a letter. Part of this letter included the following: 

“It seems just like yesterday I was changing diapers and spoon feeding you guys. Now the roles will be reversed, you’ll be changing my diapers and spoon feeding me. I always want you to believe in yourself just like I do. Don’t be afraid to live your dream, not other peoples. Don’t be afraid of failure, it is better to try and fail than to not try at all. Learn from your mistakes and use them as life experiences and not something so earth shattering. I will always support you and be behind you. Sometimes, you might hear a voice in your head. That will be me with some encouragement or other good advice. Don’t tune me out; I will always be there for you, anytime and anywhere.”

John is survived by his wife, Mary; his mother, Ruth; his son, David Fury; his daughter, Cynthia (Kory) Malcheski; his grandchildren, Madelyn Malcheski, Zachary Fury, Jaren Malcheski and Kyrra Fury; his sisters, Karen Cruz, Kathleen Feldbrugge, Rebecca (David) Schaetzke and Christine Fury; his brother, James (Norma) Fury; and nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father, John; infant brother; brothers-in-law, Frank Cruz and Walter Feldbrugge; and parents-in-law, Lowell and Hazel Johnson.

Additionally, John was preceded in death by his anonymous kidney and pancreas organ donor. The donor’s family gave John the gift of an extra 23 years, eight months and eight days of life and we who loved John are eternally grateful for your generosity. 

A public visitation will be held at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, 2947 Thinnes St., Cross Plains, from 4-7 p.m. on June 26, 2020, and again on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. until the time of the Mass. A private family Mass of Christian Burial will be held at the church at 11 a.m. on June 27, 2020, with Father Thomas Kelley presiding, with inurnment in the parish cemetery to follow. Friends and family who wish to view the service via livestream may visit sfxcrossplains.org and select Live Stream under the About tab.

In lieu of flowers, memorials in John’s name may be given to UW Health Transplant Fund, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, American Diabetes Association or St. Francis Xavier Endowment Fund. Online condolences may be made at gundersonfh.com.

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