John “Itch” Carlin

PORTAGE / OXFORD – John “Itch” Carlin, age 55, of Portage/Oxford, passed away on Monday, February 9, 2015, after his long hard fought battle of cancer.  He was surrounded by family and friends in the comfort of his home.

John was born on July 19, 1959 in Portage, the son of Francis “Rusty” and Verona (Broesch) Carlin.  In 1969, his mother married Harvey Gray, whom he had a true father-son relationship with. 

John was a volunteer firefighter in Portage for many years, which he took a lot of pride in, and he had been the Fire Warden for Lewiston Township.  He worked as a machinist.  His last place of employment was Portage Plastics, until he became ill.

Anyone who knew John knew his daughter Megan was his pride and joy;  and most recently, his grandson, Teddy.  He also enjoyed fishing (especially ice-fishing), sitting in his garage listening to his scanner, and was a devoted Badger and Jeff Gordon fan.  In his earlier years, he used to race lawn mowers.

John was united in marriage to Ruth Vrbsky Wendt on February 14, 2003.  She preceded him in death on April 11, 2014. 

John is survived by his loving daughter, Megan (Forrest Hillebrandt);  his grandson, Theodore “Teddy” John;  his mother, Verona Gray, siblings, twin brother, Jimmy, Susie (Dennis) Stearns, Timmie, Jeannie (Greg) Winchell, Ruggy (Debbie), Toni (Joe) Busha, Bill (Mary) Hendrickson, Judy (Bill) Haase, Gail (Ron) Thurley, Gary (Joanne) Hendrickson, Cinde (Dan) Killoran, and Bonnie (Marshall) Gerbitz.  He is further survived by Megan’s mother, Bonnie Carlin;  his mother-in-law Corky Vrbsky;  many nieces, nephews, and many great friends…..  BOY, HE HAD A LOT OF FRIENDS.  John was a very loving and caring man;  he would do anything for anyone.  He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

Visitation will be held at the Pflanz Mantey Mendrala Funeral Home in Portage on Saturday, February 14, 2015 from 1:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m.  A Memorial Service will follow the visitation at 4:00 p.m. with Pastor Dan Pulsfus, Police Chaplain Mark Goldsworthy and Police Chief Ken Manthey officiating.

The family would like to give a huge thank you to our long-time family friend, Jackie (Wielgus) McGowan, Cleo Paulman from SouthernCare Hospice, Kim Spaulding and Jim “Mud Cat” Poulter.  We couldn’t have done it without you.

“You fought long and hard Itchie;  you’re free of pain and suffering…..  until we meet again.”


For information please call 608 742-2126 (Portage, WI) or 608 635-2763 (Poynette, WI)