Johannes family embraces service
in Knights of Columbus
By Polly Zimmerman
When Fred Johannes' dream of becoming a priest didn't materialize, he may not have recognized that he was destined for quite a different vocation. Johannes' influence has ranged far beyond his four sons through his work as a dedicated layman in St. Joseph Parish, Wautoma.
An 18-year member and former Grand Knight of the Sacred Heart Council 6228, Knights of Columbus, he his now the state coordinator of the Squires program.
The second and third sons, David and Michael, were charter members of the University of Wisconsin Catholic Center Knights of Columbus Council 6568.
Michael serves as Inside Guard. David, who became a Fourth Degree KC when he was 19, was installed as the council's Grand Knight at the age of 21. He is believed to have been the youngest member to have assumed the top office in the Knights of Columbus.
The UW Center council, which was chartered March 28, 1974, is made up of faculty, clergy, student, non-student and professional members. It has been named "outstanding council" in 1987, 1995, 1997 and 1998.
The youngest Johannes -- Louis -- is the current Chief Squire of the St. George Circle, which includes members from Wautoma, Redgranite and Wild Rose.
With the Johannes brothers active on both the high school and college levels, their organizations benefit from their close communication. The university KC council has helped the Squires in their fund-raising ventures. The high school members have been invited to participate in the college group's projects and events, such as helping at Badger football games.
David introduced the Squires to a statewide ministry to youths with disabilities, which was established by Msgr. Thomas Campion of Monroe, a ministry now also shared by the young men.
Fred Johannes praises parents of the Squires for their cooperation, and he considers State Senator and Mrs. Robert Welch particular stalwarts in their support of the program.