PEWAUKEE, Wis. — The Pewaukee community is mourning the loss of a dearly loved wrestling coach that recently lost his battle with Alzheimer's.
Mike Brown, also known as Coach Brown, helped build the wrestling program at Pewaukee High School from the ground up.
"You know, you’ve lost the guy who was kinda the bread and butter of the wrestling program in Pewaukee for over three decades," said Ed Kurth, the current wrestling coach at Pewaukee High School.
Brown passed away on March 29 at the age of 64. He coached youth wrestling in the Pewaukee High School gym for decades.
"He loved working with the kids, his smile, his laugh and his love for people and kids," said Kurth.
Several seniors at the high school were coached by him since they were kids.
"He was a very comforting site. Something about him. He had this aura like 'Aw, come on in,'" said John Mohr, a senior wrestler at Pewaukee High School.
Wrestlers say he welcomed joy to what one would think is an intimidating sport.
Coach Brown created a program that won dozens of championships. Despite being diagnosed with Alzheimer's, he continued to show up for his team.
"One of the things of front lobe atrophy is that it takes more emotion away, but he was still very passionate about the fundamentals and techniques of wrestling," said Kurth.
One of his last wishes was to continue to develop and enhance the wrestling gym inside Pewaukee High School for generations to enjoy. Pewaukee Wrestling Room is raising money on GoFundMe to upgrade their wrestling room in honor of Brown.
"We started a GoFundMe page and in a week we've raised $17,000 already and it'll go towards continuing to upgrade the room," said Kurth.
Specifically, Pewaukee is looking to update their 20-year-old wrestling mats with a higher quality variation to protect joints better and prevent injuries. To donate to Pewaukee Wrestling click here.
A funeral for Coach Brown will be held Saturday and his family is encouraging anyone to donate through the GoFundMe page to help preserve his legacy.