Kenneth Funmaker
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Kenneth Elroy Funmaker (1932 - 2008)

Kenneth Elroy "Wamąnįga, Walks on Snow" Funmaker
Born in La Crosse, La Crosse, Wisconsin, United Statesmap
Ancestors ancestors
[sibling(s) unknown]
[spouse(s) unknown]
[children unknown]
Died at age 75 in Friendship, Adams, Wisconsin, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 29 Dec 2019
This page has been accessed 185 times.
Kenneth was Ho-Chunk.




Kenneth was born July 11, 1932 in La Crosse, Wisconsin to Harry Funmaker and Thelma Cloud.


His clan name was Wamąnįga, "Walks on Snow", from wa, "snow"; mąnį, "to walk"; and -ga, a definite article suffix used in proper names. He was a member of the Bear Clan, and specifically, the Black Bear Subclan.


Married Ruby Keahna in 1957 in Chicago, Illinois, and Rhonda L. Quaderer on February 17, 1996 in Tomah, Wisconsin.

Activities and Achievements


He retired from his job as an iron worker.

Arts and Crafts

He was an avid arts and crafts artist and silversmith, Indian gardener of traditional Indian corn and tobacco; a participant in pow-wows, where he was a well-known champion dancer, performer, singer and emcee. He was also a Stand Rock Indian ceremonial performer for over twenty years. He engaged in extensive traveling, and was an avid photographer.


In rodeos to took part in bronco riding and other forms of horse back riding. He liked to fish and hunt, fought in boxing matches, and played basketball. He was a avid Green Bay Packer Fan.

Groups and Organizations

  • He was an American Indian Movement Mid-Wisconsin delegate
  • A Juneau County Deputy
  • Wisconsin Winnebago Tribal Chairman
  • Developed the first Hocąk Language Program
  • Founder of Good Village
  • Smithsonian Certificate of Recognition to National WWII Reunion in Washington D.C.
  • Co-founder of Native American Democratic Caucus 2003
  • Traveled to Ceiba, Japan with Governor Doyle for the Economic Summit in 2004
  • He also founded the Wisconsin Dells Singers.

Culture Bearer

Traditional Bear Clan Leader, Medicine Lodge and Feast Lodge Elder. A strong believer in traditional Hocąk ways. Ken passed his knowledge down to various generations and people.


He was a loving father and grandfather with many relatives and had many, many friends throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico. He was preceded in death by his parents, brother, Adam Funmaker; sister, Harriet Funmaker; wife, Ruby E. Keahna; Daughters: Monica, Kathleen, and Thelma Funmaker; sons: Nelson Funmaker and Kunu Funmaker; aunt, Emma Lowe and grandson, Randy Funmaker.

The following members of his family were still alive at his death:

Sister: Maryann (Anthony) Yazzie of Merillan, Wisconsin
Brother: Eddie Benton-Benai Sr. of Hayward, Wisconsin
Wife: Rhonda Funmaker of Friendship, Wisconsin
Son: Bradford A. Funmaker of Baraboo, Wisconsin
Son: Kenneth E. (Cheryl) Funmaker Jr. of Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
Son: Elliott (Mary) Funmaker Sr. of Prairie Du Sac, Wisconsin
Son: Ferguson Funmaker of Spooner, Wisconsin
Son: Dixon H. (Sarina) Funmaker of Baraboo, Wisconsin
Son: Herman Decorah of New Lisbon, Wisconsin
Son: Samson D. Funmaker of Friendship, Wisconsin
Son: Christian H. Holst of Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Son: John Holst Jr. of Baraboo, Wisconsin
Son: Omahn Holst of Adams, Wisconsin
Daughter: Loriann Funmaker of Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
Daughter: Marsha (Andrew Rave) Funmaker of Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
Daughter: Sequoia Holst of Friendship, Wisconsin
Special Grandson: Gabriel (Kelly) Funmaker of Baraboo, Wisconsin
Special Grandson: Damon (Felcon) Funmaker of Baraboo, Wisconsin
Daughter: Pamela Winneshiek of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin
Daughter: Kay (Anthony) Waseskuk of Tama, Iowa
Daughter: Winona Kapayou of Tama, Iowa
and many Grandchildren and Great-Grandchildren


He passed away at age 75, Tuesday, March 4, 2008 at his home in Friendship, Wisconsin. Traditional Ho-Chunk services were held at Noon on Thursday, March 6, 2008 at the Good Village, 916 State Hwy 21, Friendship, Wisconsin. Chief Clayton Winneshiek (Nojiga) officiated.


  • All of this information comes from an obituary reprinted at Find A Grave, database and images (accessed 29 December 2019), memorial page for Kenneth Elroy Funmaker, Sr (11 Jul 1932–4 Mar 2008), Find A Grave Memorial no. 203128010, citing Indian Heights Cemetery, Wisconsin Dells, Columbia County, Wisconsin, USA ; Maintained by kmapp (contributor 46799577).

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Categories: Ho-Chunk