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Brown Deer loses a community icon

Oct. 8, 2012

Public Forum:

Although he may have resided in Merton for the last 36 years, Jim Matusek was also a "fixture" here in the village of Brown Deer. Sadly Jim passed away unexpectedly last week leaving behind family, friends and untold numbers of people he touched, not only as proprietor of Bradley Village Barbers, but as a very active community volunteer in the Hartland area. Over the years he devoted his free time to the Boy Scouts, 4H, and was a Land O' Hills baseball coach. He was also commissioner of the H.A.A.A. baseball field and member of the Hartland VFW Marshall-Johnson Post 5158.

Jim was my barber for more than 20 years and made his living cutting hair of both the young and old in the village. How many residents brought their boys, and girls, to his shop for their first haircuts? When the old Bradley Village Shopping Center was razed for redevelopment, Jim was the first to commit to a new shop in its current location on the corner of Bradley and Sherman. Anyone bowling, as I did, in the Thursday night league at Brown Deer Lanes would also know Jim as a longtime participant and league secretary. He was also a valuable sponsor of Brown Deer Junior Baseball and other youth activities in the village. I always like to chuckle about my team's picture on his barber shop wall and seeing my then young sons pictured - as well as a much younger version of myself.

I will miss the discussions about the village, redevelopment activities in the area, bowling and opinions about the Packers, Brewers and other local sports teams. Jim heard it all and wasn't afraid to pass on the information and his opinion - especially since he knew I was active as an elected official over the last 12-plus years.

He will truly be missed.

Tim Schilz

Village Trustee

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