Jeffery Bruce Hutchins, 71, of Phillips, Wisconsin, formerly of Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, passed away at home surrounded with the love of his family on Saturday, April 3rd, 2021.
Jeff was born May 17th, 1949 to Bruce Jameson and Marlene Bunny (Broman) Hutchins. He was united in marriage on September 3rd, 1971 to his wife, Terry.
After graduating high school in Prairie du Chien, Jeff served in the U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division as a Military Police from June 1968 to March 1971; this included service in Vietnam. Jeff received the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Three Bronze Service Stars, Army Commendation Medal, and a Bronze Star.
Jeff attended Mankato State University and UW-LaCrosse. He then worked as a Police Officer in Prairie du Chien and later as an Undersheriff for Crawford County. He was eventually able to combine his love for people and cooking in 1976 when he moved to Phillips and became the new owner of the Phillips Café. Other career ventures include a Logging business, HR Manager at Marquip, Shift Supervisor at Phillips Plastics, and as a long-standing Insurance Agent. Jeff, being a man of adventure, followed his dream and moved to Alaska in 1998; he later returned to Wisconsin to be near family again.
Friends and family knew him as a generous soul with a friendly and giving nature that made anyone feel welcome and right at home. His gatherings often involved preparing and sharing amazing food in great abundance. No one ever left hungry! He had a natural gift of showing unconditional love to all those around him. A friend to many, it was not uncommon for others to affectionately refer to him as "Papa." Jeff's encouraging ways left an unforgettable impact on those who knew him. He lived with others in mind. His priorities in life were his Faith, his Family and his Friends. Jeff, known to friends as "Hutch" or "Sparky," enjoyed all things outdoors, including many fishing and hunting adventures with family and friends. He was always ready to cast a line or set up a blind. Jeff was the life of the party and to know him was to love him.
Jeff is survived by his wife, Terry; three children; son, Jason (Cori) of Eleva, Dana (Rick) Yoder of Fall Creek, Terra (Matt) Chuzles of Phillips; his grandchildren, Jerad Hutchins, Mackenzie Hutchins, Ciera (Riley) Andrews, Tyler Yoder, Tegan Yoder, Josiah Chuzles, Savanah Chuzles, Kalan Chuzles; his sister, Wendy (Charles) Vanderbilt of Prairie du Chien, and four brothers; Tracy of Detroit Lakes, MN, Scott (Kristin) of Gurnee, IL, Kent (Connie) of Whitewater and Brent (Angel) of Stewartville, MN. Along with many special nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, other relatives and dear friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, Greg Hutchins; Gram Jean Hutchins; grand-daughter, Destiny Yoder; and great-nephew, William Mink.
~ You taught us that every day is a gift, so we will live life to the fullest as we carry your memory in our hearts. All our love forever.
Family and friends are invited to a Celebration of Life service at 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 10th, 2021, at Word of Life Family Church, 104 Fairway Dr, Phillips, WI, 54555. Visitation will begin at 9:30 a.m. and continue until the time of service at the church. Military Honors to follow. Heindl-Nimsgern Funeral Home and Homespun Floral & Crafts are assisting the family.