Couple found dead at Jefferson County home identified

JEFFERSON COUNTY (WKOW) -- A Fort Atkinson couple has been identified as the two people found dead outside a home that burned to the ground Tuesday night in Jefferson County.

Jim Lemke, 59, and Nedra Lemke, 57, were found shot to death Tuesday night when a sheriff's deputy arrived at the home, according to a release from the Wisconsin Department of Justice sent Friday.

Pastor John Ackatz of Faith Community Church, who is serving as a family spokesperson, identified the couple before the DOJ sent its own release.

"A lot of tears, a lot of sorrow," Ackatz says of the reaction of himself and church members to the deaths. "It hurts, it does."

Authorities are still looking for Kevin P. Anderson, from Fort Atkinson in connection to the two deaths, shootout and fire at the home on County Highway A in Sumner.

Nedra Lemke is Anderson's sister, according to a will filed June 11 in Jefferson County court.

Public records show the siblings were in line to become beneficiaries through their father's will. The father owned the home that burned. He died June 5.

The will provides for equal portions to Anderson and Lemke. But it also entrusts Lemke with the largest part of the estate to administer on behalf of another brother.

Authorities say a burglary call brought a Jefferson County Sheriff's deputy Tuesday to the home at N1941 County Highway A. Officials say the deputy discovered two people dead on a driveway and then was the target of gunfire from the property's home. Authorities say the home then burst into flames and smoke.

Ackatz says Nedra and Jim Lemke had gone to the home to mow the lawn. Law enforcement emergency communications records indicate the couple discovered windows open and broken out before the deputy arrived.

Ackatz says the Lemkes worked with middle school youth through church programs for two decades.

"They had fun, they organized games, but they led small groups," Ackatz says. "They cried with kids when they lost grandparents."

"Every kid that came in knew they were loved unconditionally by Jim and Nedra," Ackatz says. "They were just such dedicated servants."

Person-of-interest Anderson is a convicted felon. Records show he served seven months in jail and five years probation on a 1992 conviction on charges of reckless endangerment. Records show a passenger in Anderson's truck fired gunshots within inches of three ice fishermen after the fishermen left a body of water.

More at WKOW 27 News

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content