133 Mason St., Onalaska, WI • Call (608) 788-2188


Robert “Bob” Blank

February 16, 2023 | 7 comments

Robert (Bob) joined his wife on February 12, 2023. Born to Iva and Walter Blank on March 28, 1926, our gentle giant was the first of three siblings. Growing up in La Crosse, he expressed his love of nature by fishing on the Mississippi River, serving as a tour guide on the river, growing just about anything you can imagine in his garden, bird watching, bicycling, and walking. Eager to serve his country in World War II, he feigned being older to enlist in the U.S. Army, becoming a tanker in Germany, then, part of General Patton’s Third Division. This is where he met his bride, Margaret Graichen. Settling down in La Crosse, they began raising their family of four children. Affectionately known as “Bob” around town, he and Margaret went on to establish and operate “Bob’s Drive-In” in Trempealeau. Robert epitomized an incredible work ethic working as a traveling vegetable and meat salesman, a maintenance man and bus driver for Galesville-Ettrick-Trempealeau, and as the owner-operator of Bob’s Drive-In. Generously, with a quiet smile, he always found time to mow the church’s lawn or work at Catfish Days. He endeavored to leave things better than he found them. Robert is survived by his sister, Bev Rogness, and his brother, Darwin; his four children, Walter (Deb) Blank, Peggy (Rick) Sasser, Dennis (Karen) Blank, and Richard Blank; his five grandchildren: Ryan, Andy, Kaitlyn (Steve) Battaglia, Whitney, and Christian; and his two great-grandchildren: Lucas and Brie. When thinking of Robert, take a moment to feel joy in the awe of nature and in the caring for one another. The family wishes to express their sincere appreciation for the genuine loving care of the Springbrook family and the Mayo Hospice personnel.
The family will have a private service at a later date.



  1. Jim Wojciechowski

    I worked with Bob at G.E.T Middle School, and he was the nicest person that I have ever worked with. I will always have good memories of Bob.

  2. Christina

    May his beautiful soul rest in peace. So sorry to hear of his passing! You had a set of wonderful parents!

    -Teenie Leavitt

  3. Dave Lakey

    Bob was a big guy who had an even bigger heart.
    Football practices always ended up at his root beer stand! What a nice guy and nice family!,

  4. Barb Blank

    Such a blessing to many, especially his buddy Don Blank Sr. who has always treasured their friendship!! I was blessed that this kind and gentle man touched my life.

    My heartfelt condolences to the family especially Peggy and Ryan who became friends along the way.

  5. Kally Hernandez

    So very sorry to hear of Bob’s passing. I worked at Springbrook and I always looked forward to my chats with Bob. I remember his FaceTime visits with Christian and how that made his day! Such an amazing man with the kindest heart ♥️

  6. Steve Kiedrowski

    Bob was one of the best guys I ever met. A true gentleman. RIP

  7. Mike Schmeckpeper

    I also worked at SpringBrook and loved seeing him walking around the pond and later in the hallways. I enjoyed the brief conversations I had while joining him in the hallways. Later I was happy to see him wheeling those halls in his wheelchair. He just didn’t want to stop. I’m so glad I got to know him as I did and will remember him fondly. Truly a wonderful man!


Submit a Comment

Important: Condolences are approved before being posted. Condolences are not private, but viewable to the public.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Let's Celebrate Life Together

Call or send a message using the buttons below...
Call (608) 788-2188Send a Message