Justice N. Patrick Crooks, age 77, passed away in his chambers on Monday, September 21, 2015.
Never before have the words “the world lost a good man” resonated so loudly. Justice N. Patrick Crooks (“Pat”) was not just a good man who touched the lives of those who knew him with his smile, his kindness, his intelligence and his charm-- he was a good man who also touched the lives of countless people whom he never even met through his decisions and volunteerism. He embodied peace, truth and integrity in his personal and professional lives, embracing his deep faith every day.
Born to the late George (“Merrill”) and Aurelia Crooks in Green Bay on May 16th 1938, Pat attended Premontre High School and received his bachelor’s degree from St. Norbert College, graduating magna cum laude in 1960. He was recipient of the St. Norbert AIma Mater Award in 1992. In 1963 he received his law degree from the University of Notre Dame graduating 3rd in his class. He received the Notre Dame Award of the Year in 1978. Pat served as a U.S. Army officer at the Pentagon, in the Office of the Judge Advocate General where he attained the rank of Captain. He enjoyed private practice from 1966 to 1977, while he taught business law at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. He served as a Judge in Brown County for 19 years and was ABOTA Trial Judge of the year in 1994. He was elected to the Wisconsin Supreme Court in 1996, where he served for another 19 years. He loved his work and was proud to have the opportunity to serve the people of Wisconsin for nearly 40 years. His dedication to fairness and justice remained evident in the work he performed so diligently every day.
Pat’s accomplishments as a husband and father were a source of pride for him. He was a family man above all else. He felt blessed to be a loving husband to his wife Kristin (Madson) for 51 years. Together, they raised 6 children, Michael (Maura), Molly McGee (Tom), Kevin (Daphne), Kathleen Flynn (John), Peggy Crooks Nowicki, and Eileen McCreary (Mike). His love for and pride in his family showed on his face whenever he had the opportunity to speak of them. He was a loving and proud Grandpa to 21 grandchildren: Kelly, Colleen, Daniel, and Thomas Crooks, Hanna, Jack, and Liam Crooks, Michael, Samuel, Patrick, Thomas and Quinn McGee, Christopher, Kevin, Abby, Will, and Caroline Nowicki, Meghan, Nolan, and Lily McCreary and his newest grandchild, the child of Katy and John Flynn whom he will welcome from his place in Heaven. He was preceded in death by his parents, his dear brother, Thomas Crooks (Kathy), and his beloved grandson, Sammy McGee.
Pat served on countless boards and was in too many organizations to name. A few of them include: Director of the Notre Dame Law Association, a law school evaluator for the Legal Education and Admissions Section of the American Bar Association, Chairman of the United Way of Brown County, President of St. Joseph’s Academy School Board, Chairperson of Brown County Legal Aid, Member of the Juvenile Justice Study Task Force appointed by Governor Thompson, the Wisconsin Judicial Council,and Wisconsin Law Foundation Executive Committee.
On almost any given weekend, Pat could be found cheering on his Fightin’ Irish, Cubs, Packers, and Badgers, or rooting for his grandkids on the fields, courts, ice, mats, or on the stage. He loved spending time with his friends and family near the water, whether it was at the Bay, the Gulf, or the Lake.
Friends and relatives may call at the NEWCOMER FUNERAL HOME, (340 S. Monroe Avenue, Green Bay) on Friday, September 25, 2015 from 3 to 9 PM. Visitation continues at ST. MATTHEWS CATHOLIC PARISH (130 St. Matthews St., Allouez) on Saturday, September 26, 2015 from 9:30 to 10:15 AM. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 10:30 AM with the Most Reverend Robert F. Morneau officiating. A Memorial Service will be held in Madison at a later date.
For more information, or to leave an on-line condolence for the family, please visit www.NewcomerGreenBay.com or call (920) 432-4841.
In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, memorials may be donated to St. Norbert College.
To share a memory of Patrick or leave a special message for his family, please click the Share Memories button above.