George Allen “Butch” Basley, 81, of North Prairie, passed away on Tuesday, October 19, 2021. George was born on September 11, 1940 in Ashland, WI to George Leo and Margaret (Freascher) Basley. He was a member of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians in Odanah, WI.
George graduated from DePadua High School in Ashland in 1958 where he was a high achieving athlete and a first-generation graduate. After graduation, he joined the US army and served in two missile units. He spent one tour in Germany and was honorably discharged in 1964. After his service, George began his employment at American Motors in Kenosha and later at Allis Chalmers in West Allis. He attended the General Motors Training Center in Milwaukee and began his career as an auto mechanic. George worked at Wilde Pontiac in Waukesha and then Holz Motors in Hales Corners before retiring in 2006.
Along the way, he met and fell in love with Caroline C. Sandin (Seecy). George had a great sense of humor and liked to joke that Seecy chased him home after meeting him. They married in Milwaukee on August 26, 1967 and went on to have four beautiful children.
George was a lifelong car enthusiast and Nascar race fan. He was very proud of his 1966 Thunderbird convertible. George attended the Brickyard 500 for many years with family members. He loved fishing and boating on the Rez and cheering on his kids in their sporting events. George often “hit it big” at the casino and made it a priority to visit them wherever he traveled. He enjoyed watching all sports and reruns of his favorite cowboy shows. George enjoyed giving his loved ones and friends nicknames and teasing them. He loved a good joke and making people laugh. George could always be counted on to provide free car advice and repairs.
George was a longtime member of St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Genesee Depot. He was a member of the Bad River American Legion and enjoyed his role as an elder and flag bearer for the opening ceremony during the annual Pow Wow. George was a weekly volunteer during retirement at the Siggenauk Center Native American Food Pantry in Milwaukee.
George was preceded in death by his parents George and Margaret Basley. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Caroline (Sandin) Basley; children Christine (Timothy) Brudnicki of Eau Claire, George Michael, Howard, and David, all of Durango, CO; grandchildren David “Buzzy” and Jack “Scoots” Brudnicki, and Leif “Niij” and Violet “Beebs” Basley; brothers John (Donna), Tony (Roberta); and many beloved nieces and nephews, great nieces and great nephews; cousins; in-laws; and many lifelong friends.
Memorials can be directed to the Siggenauk Food Pantry in Milwaukee, the Ashland Historical Society Museum, Ashland, WI, and the Bad River Boys and Girls Club in Odanah, WI.
A memorial service for George will be held on Saturday, December 4, 2021 at 12:00PM at Thelen Funeral Services, W309S4840 Commercial Drive, North Prairie, WI—NW corner of Hwy’s 83 and 59. A time of sharing and celebrating George’s life will be held prior from 10:00AM until 12:00PM.
For those unable to attend, those wishing to share a memory or those wanting to just sign the on-line guest registry, please click the "Share A Memory" link below George's name.
Thelen Funeral Services of North Prairie/Genesee is honored to be assisting the Basley family. 262-392-4251