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Wausau area obituaries, May 22 to May 29

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Dale J. Knetter

Dale J. Knetter, 78, of Wausau, passed away unexpectedly, Tuesday, May 23, 2017 while at home. Dale was born July 6, 1938 and was the youngest of eleven children to the late Lillian and Louis Knetter. He married Janet Drews and they had been married nearly 55 years.

Dale served his country honorably in the US Army. He enjoyed a long career as a member of the Teamsters Union while retiring from Fore Way Express. Dale’s passion was spending time with his wife Janet, family, grandchildren and the outdoors. While he loved to fish and hunt, he was all about enriching the outdoor experience with family members and friends. Family outings in the north woods and spring vacations in Florida were a ritual. He was always busy working on projects at home or at the cottage and was always eager to share his wisdom and hardworking ethic with others. Dale was a loyal volunteer with the Eagles Club and Amvets Post 3929 receiving military honors. His contagious laughs, smiles and gratefulness will be forever remembered.

Survivors include his wife, Janet Knetter; two sons, Jay (Barbra) Knetter, Brookfield and their children, Ali, Emma and Jack and Brian (Patti) Knetter, Merrill and their daughter, Jenna (Patrick) Blakeslee; daughter, Pam (Robert) Barnetzke, Tomahawk and their children, Matty, Mitchell, Brandon and Brett; brother, Louis (Lorraine) Knetter; three sisters, Delores Barclay, Mildred Furger and Blanche (Don) Rahnenfuehrer; two sisters-in-law, Marilyn (Lyle) Mathison and Violet (Dave) Schuett.

The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 12:00 p.m. Friday, May 26, 2017 at St. Matthew Catholic Church, Wausau. Rev. Robert Thorn will preside. Friends may call from 10:30 a.m. until the time of services at the church. Burial will be at Restlawn Memorial Park, Wausau. Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, 3400 Stewart Ave., Wausau is assisting the family with the arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the family for a donation to a charity of their choice.
Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com.


Leonard Olbrantz

Leonard J. Olbrantz, 92, Marathon, passed away peacefully on his birthday, May 22, 2017 surrounded by family at his home.
He was born May 22, 1925 in Wausau, son of the late Bernard Sr. and Rose (Kardack) Olbrantz. On March 8, 1947 he married Ruth Schroeder at St. Michael Catholic Church, Wausau. She survives.

Leonard worked many jobs throughout his life including Crestline, Foremost White House Dairy, custodian at Marathon School and Michael’s Pipeline. He was an amazing glass glazer and fixed windows as a part-time job. He was a Marathon Village board member for over 10 years. He served his country in the United States Navy during World War II serving in Okinawa and Iwo Jima. In 2011 he was proud to have taken the Honor Flight with his son Leon, and was a 60 year member of the American Legion Alois Dreikosen Post No. 469, Marathon.

Leonard could fix anything that was broken. If anything was in need of repair, we always went to Pa and he helped fixed it.

He enjoyed music, playing cards, watching the Packers, Brewers, Three Stooges and the Andy Griffith Show. He also enjoyed an occasional trip to the casino and above all spending time with family.

Survivors include his wife, Ruth Olbrantz; children, Lia (Dave Brod) Klumpyan, Larry (Catherine) Olbrantz, Linda (Ken Cole) Olbrantz, Lois (Cliff) Laska, Luanne (Robert) Wiesman and Leon Olbrantz; one daughter-in-law, Rita Passow; grandchildren, Len (Jenny) Olbrantz, Kim (Keith) Marquardt, Kevin (Jennifer Orshak) Klumpyan, Craig (Rebecca) Klumpyan, Cara (Dan) Geyser, Jamie (Matthew) Gorajski, Natalie (Derrick) Deese, Rick (Karla) Radtke, Chris Radtke, Lisa Laska, Holly (Scott Ohmart) Laska, Andrew (Becki) Wiesman and Greta Wiesman; 17 great-grandchildren; siblings, John (Sally) Olbrantz, Bernard (Marie) Olbrantz, Alan (Diane) Olbrantz, Mary (Don) Schultz and Sister Eunice Olbrantz.

Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by a son, Leonard Jr., infant grandson, Scott, sons-in-law, Richard Klumpyan and Randy Lodholz, brothers, Dan, Clem and Leo Olbrantz and a sister, Violet Pitek.

The funeral Mass will be celebrated at 12:00 Noon on Saturday, May 27, 2017 at St. Mary Catholic Church, Marathon. Rev. Msgr. Joseph Diermeier will preside. Burial will be in the parish cemetery where full military honors will be conducted by the American Legion Alois Dreikosen Post No. 469, Marathon. Visitation will be Saturday from 9:30 a.m. until the time of services all at St. Mary Catholic Church, Marathon.

The family wishes to express their sincere appreciation to caregivers, Niki and Ruth, with a special thanks to his “favorite” Debbie Marzynski as well as Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services, his favorite nurse Mary, Dr. Ahuja and staff at the Cancer Center for the kind, compassionate care given to Leonard by all.

Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com


Jerome Albrecht

Jerome Albrecht, 86, Athens, died Saturday, May 20, 2017, on Jamie’s Birthday, at Dycora Transitional Health in Abbotsford, under the care of Aseracare Hospice.

He was born April 3, 1931 on the family farm in the town of Rietbrock, son of the late John and Celia (Nowicki) Albrecht. The family farm was established in 1902 by his grandparents, Peter and Elizabeth Albrecht.

On September 3, 1956, he married Mary Ann Myszka at Holy Family Catholic Church, Poniatowski. She preceded him in death on June 2, 2005.

In his younger years, Jerome worked on the first atomic submarine engine, while living in Milwaukee. He then moved back to Athens and worked as a bulldozer operator, ginseng farmer and dairy farmer until the age of 80, when he retired. Jerome was proud to have been a local advisor to former President George W. Bush.

Survivors include one son, James “Jamie” (Tammy Dvorak) Albrecht, Athens; one brother, John (Debbie) Albrecht, Edgar; two sisters, Dolores (Marvin) Osterbrink, Wausau and Pat (Tom) Niewolny, Rib Mountain; brother-in-law, Ervin (Lorraine) Myszka, Athens; sister-in-law, Doris Carroll, Copperas Cove, Texas; and many nieces and nephews.

Besides his parents and wife, Mary Ann, he was preceded in death by one daughter, Julie Albrecht; one sister, Doris Albrecht; and one sister-in-law, Dorothy Literski.

The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 27, 2017 at St. Anthony Catholic Church, Athens. Rev. George Graham will preside. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery, Athens. Friends may call on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. until time of services at the church.

Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, Athens is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com


Edwin P. Volhard, Jr.

Edwin P. Volhard Jr., 87, Marathon, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on Wednesday, May 24, 2017 at Aspirus Wausau Hospital.

He was born August 19, 1929 in Marathon, son of the late Edwin Sr. and Anna (Gassner) Volhard. On September 1, 1954 he married Anna Mae Jagodinski at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Marathon. She preceded him in death on May 7, 1998. He then married Arlene (Hornung) Seubert on May 30, 1999 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Marathon. She survives.

Junior served in the National Guard, was a member of the Marathon Fire Department for 44 years- serving as Fire Chief for 10 years, and was a member of the American Legion Alois Dreikosen Post #469, Marathon. In 2012 he was proud to have taken the Honor Flight to Washington DC. He was a lifelong member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Marathon.

Junior worked as a milk hauler, cheese maker, carpenter and grew ginseng for 40 years, until his retirement. Among his favorite pastimes, he enjoyed fishing (especially with his grandsons), hunting, bowling and traveling.

Survivors include, his wife, Arlene; his three children, James (Wanda) Volhard, Jean (Doug) Kage and Carol (Robert) Kaldunski, all of Marathon; his grandchildren, Teresa Volhard, Matthew (Jackie) Volhard, Ryan (Amanda) Kage, Craig (Mary) Kage and Brian (Elizabeth) Kaldunski; two step-grandchildren, Jessica and Danielle; his great-grandchildren, Micah Volhard, Reed, Grace and Claire Kage and Anna and Emalee Kaldunski; six step-great-grandchildren; one brother, Sylvester (Ruth) Volhard, Marathon; two sisters, Angeline (Ralph) Hall, Evansville and Mary Ann Seliger, Marathon; one brother-in-law, Erwin Jagodinski, Marathon; two sisters-in-law, Joan Weisenberger, Wausau and Carol (Edmund) Gesicki, Pleasant Praire, Wis.; and many nieces and nephews.
Junior is further survived by Arlene’s family, her children, Barbara (David) Ceranski, Robert (Julie) Seubert, Carole (Barry) Anker, Charles (Joan) Seubert, Beverly Seubert, Jeffery Seubert and Paula (Robert) Stanley; and her 21 grandchildren; and 40 great-grandchildren.

Besides his parents and wife, Anna Mae, he was preceded in death by his grandson, Andrew Kaldunski; an infant sister, Margaret Volhard; and his sister, Dolores Blume.

The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 28, 2017 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Marathon. Rev. Msgr. Joseph Diermeier will preside. Burial will be in the parish cemetery with full military honors conducted by the American Legion, Marathon. Friends may call on Sunday from 1:00 p.m until time of services all at the church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to St. Mary’s Parish.

The family would like to extend a special thank you to the staff at Copper Leaf Assisted Living-Marathon, where he was a resident for the past six months and the staff at Aspirus Wausau Hospital Palliative Care Unit for all the wonderful care and support given to Junior and his family.

Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, Marathon is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com


Florence L. Kieffer

Florence L. Kieffer, 93, Wausau died after a short illness on Wednesday, May 24, 2017 at Aspirus Wausau Hospital.

She was born September 30, 1923 in Stratford to the late Adolph and Bertha (Schiffer) Frank. After graduating from Stratford High School in 1942, Florence moved to Wausau where she became a secretary at the Vocational School in the old Horace Mann School downtown. That is where she met Gordon Kieffer. They were married at St. Mary’s Rectory on May 25, 1946. He preceded her in death on October 11, 2016.

Florence enjoyed a very long and active life. In the 1950’s, she participated in many Stunt Night performances for St. Michael’s Church. With her husband Gordy, they owned and operated the Pine Bar and Restaurant on North 6th Street for 46 years. She was a gracious hostess and greeted everyone. Her dessert tortes were a Friday night favorite. She was very involved with St. Michael’s Church where she was one of two women on the building committee for the new church which was built in 1973. Florence and Gordy enjoyed a wide circle of friends and entertained often. After retirement, they traveled and spent their winters in Sun City and Lake Havasu, Arizona where they met many new friends.

Known as “Grandma Tootie” to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, she loved spending time with them, attending dance recitals and walking in puddles. She crocheted blankets for each one in spite of very arthritic hands.

Survivors include children Lynn (Dennis) Madl, Denton Tex., Bruce (Monica) Kieffer, Madison, Anne Kieffer, Wausau and James Kieffer; five grandchildren, Michael (Amanda) Madl, Collin (Beth Stadtmueller) Kieffer, Patrick (Laura Denton) Madl, Kristin Madl, Haley (Neil) Simmons; seven great grandchildren, Keira & Liam Madl, Max Madl, Clara Kieffer, Lillian, Elizabeth & Allison Simmons; sister-in-law, Marge Gausewitz, nephew, Joseph (Cathy) Rohling, their daughter Patricia, and nieces, Patricia Mertens, JoAnn Miller along with many other nieces, nephews and great nieces and nephews on the Frank side.

Besides her parents, she was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Gordy, seven brothers, Adolph, George, Lloyd, Donnie, Harold, Ralph and Roger Frank.

The Funeral Mass will be celebrated 11:00 a.m. Wed. May 31, 2017 at St. Michael Catholic Church, Wausau. Rev. William Grevatch will preside. Entombment will be in Memorial Chapel Mausoleum, Restlawn Memorial Park, Wausau. Friends may call on Wed. from 9:30 a.m. until the time of services at the church.

Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, 1302 Sixth Street, Wausau is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com.

The family wishes to thank Linda and Kathy Fosick at Cedar Creek Manor for the wonderful care given to our Mom. She especially appreciated her weekly Bloody Mary’s. The traditional holiday meals were greatly appreciated by the extended family as well.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to St. Michael Catholic Church, Monk Botanical Gardens or Newman Catholic High School.


Lucille J. Fraser

Lucille J. Fraser, 93, Wausau, died Tuesday May 23, 2017 at Aspirus Hospice House, Wausau.

She was born December 21, 1923 in Wausau to the late Anthony and Regina (Ligman) Katczka.

Lucille graduated from Wausau East High School in 1942. She was married in 1950 and later divorced. At age 70 she retired from Greenheck Fan in Weston, and after one week, went back to work part-time until the age of 84. Among her favorite pastimes she enjoyed spending time with her kids and grandkids, cooking, baking, doing household projects and visiting the casino with her friends.

Survivors include her two sons, Timothy (Laurie) Fraser, Weston and Patrick (Lisa) Fraser, Mosinee; seven grandchildren, Michael (Rachel) Fraser, Ashley (Tyler) Busko, Caitlin (Zach) Onson, MacKenzie (Derek Landwehr) Fraser, Jordan (Hanna Deaton) Fraser, Brittney and Brandon Barsi; three great-grandchildren, Rory and Oakley Onson and Jackson Busko; and three sisters, Alice Beilke, Marion Pryzbilski and Barbara Valiska.

The Memorial Mass will be celebrated at 11:00 a.m. Thursday, June 1, 2017 at St. Mark Catholic Church, Rothschild. Rev. Allan Slowiak will preside. Friends may call from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at Peterson Kraemer Funeral Home, 1302 Sixth St., Wausau and again from 10:00 a.m. until the time of services on Thursday at the church. Burial will be at St. Michael Cemetery, Wausau following the Mass and luncheon.

Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com.


Violet Mae “Jerry” Zinsmeister

Violet Mae “Jerry” Zinsmeister, Age 92, of Wausau, died May 27, 2017 at Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice House.

Jerry was born in Milwaukee on April 19, 1925 to the late Herbert and Rose (Krause) Koglin. She married Robert Frank Zinsmeister on June 14, 1947. He preceded her in death. She graduated from Milwaukee County Hospital with a nursing degree on June 7, 1947.

In 1966, Jerry retired from nursing, but later served as the secretary for Immanuel Lutheran Church for ten years. She was very active in women of the church, and served as their president for seven terms. She taught Sunday School, VBS, and adult education classes. She enjoyed making quilts and layettes for Lutheran World Relief, and was a Bethesda Thrift Store volunteer for many years. Her hobbies included baking, cooking, entertaining, and gardening; and she was an avid mystery story reader.

Survivors include four sons, Alan (Deb) Zinsmeister, Daniel Zinsmeister, Brian (Roxanne) Zinsmeister, and Karl (Lora) Zinsmeister; seven grandchildren: Nick Zinsmeister, Melissa (Kirk) Lesser, Robb (Denitza) Zinsmeister, Aaron Zinsmeister, Andrew Zinsmeister, Ruth (Tim) Armstrong, and Maxwell Zinsmeister; and several great grandchildren, as well as her younger brother Ronald Koglin.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to one of the following at Immanuel Lutheran Church: ILC Women, Benevolence, or Organ funds.

A memorial service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 3, 2017 at Immanuel Lutheran Church, 430 Adams Street, Wausau. Visitation with the family will take place from 9:00 a.m. until the time of services at the church.


Mary Therese Baynes

MaryTherese Baynes (nee Riordan) died peacefully at Elmhurst Hospital in Elmhurst, IL on Friday, May 26, 2017 after a seven-year struggle with Dementia. She was 64 years old.

Mary is survived by her husband, John Baynes; her children, Robert (Holly) Baynes of Omaha, NE, Elizabeth Baynes of Atlanta, GA and Patrick Baynes of Philadelphia, PA; and her siblings, Tom (Mary -Kate) Riordan, Anne (Kevin) Flaherty and Patrick Riordan. Mary was preceded in death by her parents, Lawrence and Virginia (McElligott) Riordan of Wausau, WI and her brother, John Riordan.

Mary was born in Wausau, Wisconsin in May 24, 1953 to Lawrence and Virginia Riordan. She graduated from Wausau East High School and enjoyed camping and boating throughout her youth. She attended Marymount University, Arlington, VA and returned to Wausau to run The Papagallo shoe store. Mary and John met, when Mary introduced herself to John at a party hosted by her brother, Tom. Mary and John married in March of 1981 and quickly welcomed their first child the following January; two more children came in quick succession.

While John was serving in the military, Mary was often the main caretaker of the children and homes. His career took them to Elmwood Park, IL and Conyers, GA and she happily joined him in those new locations. She set up the homes and welcomed in anyone who passed through the doors. She kept busy volunteering with scout troops, sports teams, and after school clubs. She enjoyed hosting parties, playing tennis, road trips, collecting miniature shoes, and walking her dachshunds (Alfred, Lily, Henry, and Oscar).

She used to tell her children that she knew she wanted to be a mother from a young age and her kids are evidence of her success on that pursuit. She would light up to see their successes and was very proud of all of them. Once her children left the home for college, she found herself with more time and returned to school to complete her Associate degree in 2009 at Triton College, River Grove, IL.

Beyond these facts, Mary was a remarkable and engaging woman. She was friendly to everyone and thoroughly her life. She was passionate about children and her dogs.
She had a laugh that was loved by everyone around her and she used it often. Mary was courageous and dedicated. Her courage was evident in 1990 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer and more recently as she weathered the challenges of the neurodegenerative effects of Dementia. Mary was above all gentle, playful, and loving; an amazing wife, mother, and friend to those privileged to know her.

A memorial service is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 1, 2017 at the Church of the Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ, 621 Second Street, Wausau. Visitation will take place from 9:00 a.m. until the time of services at the church. Burial will take place at Restlawn Memorial Park.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Alzheimer’s Association (www.alz.org).

The family would like to thank Elvia Villegas who was able to lengthen Mary’s years in the home through her care and attention.

The family thanks the staffs of Astoria Nursing Home and Elmbrook Nursing home for their professionalism and kindness in their care for Mary over the last three years.
The family would also like to thank the Hospice team (especially the nurses and patient care technicians) of Elmhurst Memorial Hospital, Elmhurst, IL for their excellent, compassionate care for Mary (and the family) in her final week. Online condolences may be given at www.brainardfuneral.com


Jack D. Seehafer

Jack D. Seehafer, 58, of Wausau, passed away at his home on Tuesday, May 23, 2017.

Jack was born in Wausau on September 18, 1958 to the late Herbert and Jeanette (Heyer) Seehafer.

Although Jack lived a quiet and simple life, he was passionate about the things he enjoyed. Jack was the Adjutant for Wausau Squadron 10 of the Sons of The American Legion. Jack enjoyed the outdoors and was an avid hunter. He was a sports fan; always cheering on the Green Bay Packers, Wisconsin Badgers and Milwaukee Brewers. He will be truly missed by all who knew and loved him.

Jack is survived by his sister Robin (Jim) Weiss of Delafield; sister-in-law, Mary Seehafer of Wausau; nieces, Carly Weiss and Marisa (Robbie) Seehafer and his nephews, Jordan and Ben (Kimberly) Hoenisch. Jack is further survived by several aunts, uncles and cousins.

Beside his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, James Seehafer.

A memorial service will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at St. Paul United Church of Christ, 426 Washington Street, Wausau. The Rev. Philip Schneider will officiate. Visitation will take place from 9:30 a.m. until the time of service at the church. Entombment will take place at Restlawn Memorial Park, Wausau.

Online condolences may be given at www.brainardfuneral.com


James D. Gerum

Jim has gone to be with the love of his life Doris who has preceded him in death.They are now together forever and playing cards to their hearts content.

Jim is survived by his children, Mary (Ray), Tim (Missy), Beth (Frank) step children, Rhonda (David), Scott (Connie), Sue and Debbie. He is survived by many grandchildren and especially his grandson Casey who was a great help to him in his final years. He is also survived by his niece Debbie of whom he was very fond of.

He is preceded in death by his sister, brother, and special friend Hughy (navy).Jim was a master plumber that took great pride in his work. He was an absolute perfectionist and if he didn’t get it right the first time, he would rip it all out and start over. A great joy in his life was working on all of his kid’s houses and making that extra bathroom or updating all the toilets and fixtures. In later years he was known to sit on a chair and “bark out orders” to whoever was there helping him. He made everyone do a better job just by working with him.

A special thank-you to all the staff at Mount View Care Center where Jim had lived the last couple of years. He truly appreciated everything everyone did for him-including the “large coffees”, the oatmeal, the great food, the 2 shots a day, the eggs, and the ability to check his blood sugar at a minimum of 10 times a day. This allowed him to feel some control over his final years. He didn’t always show his gratitude but it was there and the family felt secure in knowing that he was getting the excellent care when they couldn’t always be there. It was a great comfort to them as well.

Jim is now at peace with his beloved Doris and whenever we see a Delta faucet, a cribbage board or a deck or cards we will think of him.


Virginia M. Gosch

Virginia Madeline Gosch, age 93 of Wausau, WI, passed away peacefully Sunday May 21, 2017. Virginia (known has Dolly by family & Ginny by friends) was born January 31, 1924, to the late Frank & Gertrude (Schloegel) Kullmann, in Philadelphia, PA.

Virginia grew up & enjoyed her childhood & teen life in PA., until she joined the U.S. Navy Waves in 1944; then to “Boot Camp” at Hunter College, Bronx, N.Y. then on to Washington D.C. From there, Virginia was sent to Dayton, OH., where she worked on Cryptograms & eventually was able to crack the German & Japanese codes. Virginia was awarded a Presidential Citation Medal for being a part of the select company of Waves involved in the cracking of the codes.

It was while in Dayton, OH. that Virginia met & married Joseph Gosch on November 4, 1944. Their whirlwind romance resulted in 58 years together & 3 children. After WW II, Joe had a job that moved them around the states, eventually landing in Wausau.

When Virginia decided to go back to the workforce, she worked a couple of small jobs before being hired on at Kraft Foods in 1960. She worked at Kraft Foods until her retirement in 1986. Virginia worked in the plant office, coordinating the shipment of the cheese products across the U.S. & overseas. While at Kraft, she was known & loved for her little pranks, fun-loving nature, hard work & dedication. She never shied away from hard work. While at Kraft, she was awarded the J.L. Kraft Merit Award, the highest award the company will present to an employee for their initiative & extra effort put forth in their job. Virginia made lasting impressions on all who met her, from the man who mowed her yard, to the city bus drivers, sales clerks, wait staff at the local restaurants, neighbors & friends alike.

She was an avid Packer fan & was able to attend a few games. She enjoyed going to the Casino with her dear friends Jack, Bev & Rosemary & lunches with her friend Lisa. She was a member of the Toby Keith fan club & was able to enjoy attending a few of his concerts. Virginia enjoyed going to WA. State to spend time with her oldest son & daughter-in-law. She had a real passion & knowledge for cats & her companion, Cassy, will miss her deeply.

Virginia is survived by her 3 children, Gregory (Susan), Camano Island, WA., Jeffrey (Janet), Wausau, WI. & Barbara (Joe) Schira, Rib Mountain, WI. 4 grandchildren & 2 step-grandchildren. 6 great-grandchildren & 3 step-great grandchildren, nieces & nephews. Besides her parents & husband Joseph, Virginia is preceded in death by her brother, John Kullmann & her sister, Marie Cole.

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, May 26 at St. Michael’s Catholic Church, 619 Stark Street, Wausau. Father James Schaefer will preside. Visitation will be held from 9:30 a.m. until the time of services at the Church. Burial will be private, at the Gosch Family section at St. Michael’s Cemetery, Berlin, WI. Brainard Funeral Home – Wausau Chapel is assisting the family with arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Marathon County Humane Society, 7001 Packer Dr, Wausau.

The family, would like to thank Aspirus VNA, Aspirus Hospice & the staff of St. Benedictine Home, Wausau. We appreciate all the care & compassion you gave to Virginia & to us. She truly was a precious little Dolly & will forever be in our hearts.


Roseanne Backes

Rosanne Backes, 87, of Wausau, passed away peacefully at Aspirus Wausau Hospital, surrounded by her loving family, on Sunday, May 21, 2017.

Rosanne was born on December 4, 1929 in Weyauwega, Wisconsin, to the late Frederick and Edna (Schroeder) Bork. During her high school years, she met and found the love of her life, Jerome Backes. They married on June 22, 1951 in Dubuque, Iowa.

Rosanne worked for Rib Mountain Hardware for over 30 years. Rosanne had a serving heart. She was member of the altar guild, quilting club, the 55+ club and volunteered at Bethesda. While her kids were young they spent their weekends traveling to the family farm so they could help grandpa with his laundry, baking him fresh bread and mowing the lawn. Rosanne also loved spending time with her family, whether they were shopping, traveling out west, collecting rocks, sharing a meal or getting together on her claimed holiday, Christmas, where she always went above and beyond; nothing was more important than creating memories that would last a lifetime. She will be missed by all who knew and loved her.

She is survived by her children, Jim (Susan) Backes, Mary (John) Miller and Ann (Bruce) Iattoni; grandchildren, Jonathon, Megan, John, Steven, Daniel, Katie and Rachel; great-grandchildren, Ellieanna, Madeline, Andrew, Kaelyn, Makenna, Natalie, Olivia, Jack, Emma and Anna and her beloved niece, Sandy Dumbleton.Besides her parents, Rosanne was preceded in death by her husband, Jerome and her brother, Alfred Bork.

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, May 25, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. at Mount Olive Lutheran Church, 6205 Alderson Street, Weston. Rev. Lance Hoelscher will officiate. Visitation will take place from 9:00 a.m. until the time of services at the church. Entombment will take place at Restlawn Memorial Park.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Rosanne’s memory, to Bathesda Thrift Shop, 329 N 1st Ave, Wausau, WI 54401.


Beverly J. Brainard

Beverly J. Brainard, “Age is a number and mine is unlisted,” died Saturday, May 20, 2017 at Ascension St. Clare’s Hospital, Weston, surrounded by family. Bev was born October 24th to Leon and Gladys Flynn in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

Bev graduated from Regis High School, formerly St. Patrick’s, in Eau Claire in 1944. Bev met and married Robert K. Brainard of Durand, Wisconsin on September 2, 1950 in Eau Claire at Sacred Heart Catholic Church. Together, they moved to Wausau in 1951, where they began their family. Bev was a stay-at-home mother who enjoyed participating in her children’s activities. As the children grew older, Bev took up a career working at the YWCA as a secretary. Bev and Robert enjoyed traveling with the Serra Club, Knights of Columbus and Elks Club. They began “snow birding” the next 30 years to Gulf Shores, Alabama. Her passion for collecting antiques turned into a business – Bev’s Tin Toys – selling and buying antiques in the Wausau area over many years. Bev also loved to get together with her good friends in the bridge group for the past 66 years.

Survivors include her children, Scott (Debbie Maly) Brainard, Jon (Jane) Brainard and Sheila Brainard all of Wausau, and Michael (Cory) Brainard of Gulfport, MS; Grandchildren, Max (Emily) Brainard of LaCrosse, WI, Andrew (fiancée Melanie Wambold) Brainard of London, England, Keegan Brainard of Gulfport, MS, Aimee Miller of Hudson, WI; and six great grandchildren, Nevaeh and Chanse Brainard, Henry and Hazel Brainard, and Ethan and Julian Miller.

Bev was preceded in death by her husband Robert on October 20th 2015 and her grandson Christopher Brainard.

The funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 24, 2017 at The Church of the Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ, 621 N 2nd Street., Wausau. Father William Grevatch will officiate. Visitation will take place from 10:00 a.m. until the time of service at the church, followed by the burial at Pine Grove Cemetery. Brainard Funeral Home-Wausau Chapel is assisting the family.


Ellen Schuett

Ellen Ruth Schuett was called to her heavenly home on Sunday May 28, 2017, after a lengthy illness. Her hard working hands used for homemaking, sewing and knitting became useless and her strength waned as her life ended.

Ellen was born to Walter and Carrie (Schaefer) Barnetzke on August 13, 1934, she was 82 years old. Ellen attended Grant School and Wausau High School, graduating in 1952. Upon graduation she worked for Dr. Fred Prehn as a receptionist and medical assistant until Dr. Prehn’s retirement. Ellen continued her career as a Pharmacy Assistant at Berndt’s Pharmacy. She enjoyed meeting and getting to know the many people in her work.

In June 1954, Ellen met Roger Schuett at a local polka dance. She and Roger were inseparable through their courtship and marriage and were married on October 22, 1955, and after 62 years, death has broken the bond. We look forward to meeting again in her heavenly mansion. The marriage was blessed with two children, Sue and Scott. Sue passed away on May 26, 2011.

Ellen is survived by her loving husband Roger, a son Scott Schuett (Jane Umnus), grandchildren Brianna Curro, Jenna and Jared Schuett, grandson Tyler Schuett (Rhonda Michlig) and great grandson Eli Schuett, son-in-law Ron Schram and grandson Ryan Schram, as well as her nephews the Barnetzke Boys and their families.

Preceding her in death are her daughter, Sue Schram, parents Walter and Carrie Barnetzke, brother Roger Barnetzke, sister-in-law Elaine and her in-laws Harry and Emma Schuett.

Ellen was a long time member of the Friendly 12 homemakers group. She also , with the help of good friends formed a sewing and “news” club. She was a dedicated member of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church. She loved dogs, cats, birds, flowers and all creatures. She enjoyed knitting, playing cards and scenic country rides. Ellen will always be remembered as a loving wife, mother, grandmother and friend to many.

Visitation services for Ellen will be from 4-7 p.m. Wednesday, May 31, 2017, at the Helke Funeral Home, 302 Spruce Street, Wausau and from 9-10 a.m. Thursday June 1, 2017, at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 600 Stevens Drive, Wausau, funeral services to follow at 10:00 a.m. with Rev. Bruce Lamont officiating. Interment is at Restlawn Memorial Park, followed by a luncheon at St. Mark’s Fellowship Hall.

You may sign our online guest book at www.helke.com.


Lavon Gifford

Lavon T. Gifford, 83, Wausau, died peacefully on May 25, 2017, surrounded by her family, at North Central Health Care – Gardenside Crossing in Wausau.

She was born August 25, 1933, in New Richmond, Wisconsin, the daughter of John and Verna Thoreson. She graduated from Roberts High School, worked as a secretary in St. Paul, Minnesota, and in 1952 married Robert Gifford at her family’s home in Roberts, Wisconsin.

She is survived by her husband, Robert Gifford; children, Tammie McCarthy and Tim (Ann) Gifford; sister, Maren Thoreson; grandchildren, John (Jill) McCarthy, Kaeley Gifford, and Andrew Gifford.

She was preceded in death by her parents and infant son, Thomas Paul.

Services will be held at First Presbyterian Church of Wausau, 406 Grant Street, on Tuesday, May 30, 2017, at 11:30 a.m. with visitation at the church from 9:00 a.m. until the time of service. A dinner will be served at the church after the service. Private entombment will take place at Restlawn Memorial Park.

You may sign the family guestbook at www.helke.com.

Memorial gifts may be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research or to First Presbyterian Church of Wausau.

The family wishes to extend their sincerest appreciation to the staff at Gardenside Crossing for their kindness, compassion, and loving care.


Ruth Schreiber

Ruth Schreiber, 80, of Wausau passed away Thursday, May 25, 2017, At St. Clare’s Hospital, Weston, from Lung Cancer.

Ruth was born March 21, 1937, in Wausau to the late Edward and Margaret (Peterson) Lueck. She graduated from Wausau Senior High School and married Vernon Schreiber on May 17, 1958. Ruth worked at Runkel Abstract for several years while raising her family.

Nature and animals were Ruth’s favorite companions. Chipmunks snatched peanuts from the top of her shoe. Deer would wait a few feet away while she filled the bird feeders for all the animals to enjoy.

Ruth is survived by her two sons, David (Susan) Schreiber, Wausau, and Keith (Brenda) Schreiber, Olive Branch, Mississippi, and two grandsons, Joshua and Mitchell Schreiber of Wausau. Ruth will also be missed by her sister, Peggy (Gary) Stanaway, Reno, Nevada, and their two sons, Michael and Matthew.

Memorials may be directed to the Humane Society of Marathon County, 7001 Packer Drive Wausau, WI 54401.

No formal services will be held. Helke Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


Kevin J. Blaschka

Kevin J. Blaschka, 57, of Wausau, passed away on Thursday, May 25, 2017, at Aspirus Wausau Hospital.

He was born in Wausau on April 10, 1960, to Edward and Nancy (Stark) Blaschka. Kevin grew up in Wausau attending local schools and was a 1978 graduate of Wausau West High School. After completing high school, Kevin attended U.W. Marathon County where he took math classes, a subject he had great interest in.

Kevin will be remembered as a kind and loving person. In addition to his interest in math, he also liked studying the weather. Kevin enjoyed music, karaoke, watching sci-fi and horror movies, biking, fishing, shooting pool, and reading from his collection of books. He enjoyed the companionship of his cat, Maggie.

Survivors include his mother, Nancy; brother, Shawn (Jenny) Blaschka; sisters, Kimberly (Gary) Seubert and Tammy Blaschka (Joel Knight); nieces and nephews, Mariah, Tameika, Spencer, Troy, Brock, and Andrew; and his beloved cat, Maggie.

He was preceded in death by his father, Edward; and his grandparents.

A funeral service will be at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 1, 2017, at Helke Funeral Home, 302 Spruce St., Wausau. Family and friends may call beginning at 9:00 a.m. until the time of service at the funeral home. Burial will follow in Pine Grove Cemetery, Wausau.

You may sign the family guestbook at www.helke.com.


Mary and Merlin Derr

Merlin Eugene Derr, 81, died April 12, 2017 in Port Orange, FL following complications from an accident and his beloved wife of 58 years, Mary Margaret Derr, 81, followed him into eternal life on May 20, 2017 in Port Orange, FL.

Mary and Merlin Derr grew up in Columbus, WI. Following high school, Merlin went on to Carroll College earning a business degree and Mary attended Mount Mary College earning a degree in Art. The couple married on June 21, 1958 in Columbus. They were blessed with two children: Mark and Melanie.

Merlin worked for John Deere in the international Asian division which saw the family live in Bangkok, Thailand and Manila, Philippines from 1972-78. Mary seized the opportunity and made the most of it organizing visits to local cultural sites and museums on their holidays. The family returned to Moline, IL in 1978 during which time Mary earned her LPN and began working for Phelps Nursing Home in the summers. Summertime often found the family at their property on Duck Lake in Watersmeet which had been the summer home since 1972 and continued to be for over 40 years. Mary loved to go sailing, swimming or spend time on the pontoon with Merlin; Mary simply loved the water.

After Merlin retired in the 1990’s, they moved to Florida and Mary continued to travel extensively. In his later years, Merlin worked part-time for Tradewinds Generator Company up until his death. Throughout her life, Mary always loved creating all kinds of art and craft work: oil paintings, duck decoys and quilting.

The couple is survived by their daughter, Melanie (Mark) Peterson; son, Mark Derr; grandchildren, Blake and Morgan Derr and Lee Peterson.

The Mass of Christian Burial will be at 5:30 PM on Tuesday, May 30, 2017 at St. Agnes Catholic Parish, 6101 Zinzer Street, Weston. Fr. Greg Bohren will officiate. A visitation will be held from 4:30 PM until the time of service at the church on Tuesday. Helke Funeral Home is assisting the family with the arrangements; you may sign our family guestbook at helke.com.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to either the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum (Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum Tribute Fund, 700 12th Street, Wausau, WI 54403) or the the NRA (https://donate.nra.org/donate).


Lillian Wenzel

Lillian Lydia Wenzel, 91, of Wausau, passed away peacefully, Friday, May 19, 2017, at Wausau Manor, under the care of Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services.

Lillian was born October 15, 1925, at home on the farm in the Village of Spencer, the sixth child to Fred and Rachel (Buhrow) Blaubach. Although she attended several different schools she moved with her family to Hamburg, where she graduated from LaFollette.

Lillian eventually moved to Ringle where she met Clarence Wenzel at a dance in Nutterville. They were married on November 6, 1943, at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Town of Easton and honeymooned in Chicago. Lillian worked side by side with her husband on the farm for 26 years where they raised three children, Arleen, Lois and Dennis. After Clarence’s unfortunate death on November 15, 1969 she continued to run the farm on her own for three years. She later sold the farm and moved to Schofield where she began working as a cook and housekeeper for the Downtown Motel, Sunny Vale Infirmary and North Central Health Care, retiring in 1983.

Lillian was a faithful and longstanding member of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Schofield and belonged to the Ladies Aid and Card Club. Her hobbies included inspirational writing, canning, baking, cooking, embroidery, sewing, crocheting, latch hook and candy making. She also spent time traveling throughout the United States, visiting places like Tennessee, Alabama, Florida, California, Colorado, North and South Dakota, Louisiana and overseas in Germany.

Lillian is survived by her three children; Arleen (Gary) Hahn of Lantana, TX, Lois (David) Hahn of Schofield and Dennis (Judy) Wenzel of Wausau, six grandchildren, nine great grandchildren, and two brothers, Raymond (Patricia) Blaubach, Wausau and Ernest (Carol) Blaubach of Schofield and two sisters-in-law, Betty (Calvin) Blaubach Patterson of Hamburg and Eldine Blaubach of Rib Mountain.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Clarence, four brothers, George, Daniel, Elroy and Alvin and two sisters, Eleanore and Violinda.

Funeral services will be 11:00 a.m., Friday, May 26, 2017, at St. Peter’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Schofield, with Rev. Walter Davidson officiating. Visitation will be from 4-7 p.m., Thursday, May 25, 2017, at the Helke Funeral Home, 302 Spruce St in Wausau and after 10:00 a.m. Friday at the church.

You may sign our online guestbook at www.helke.com.


Lynn Marie Westermeyer

Lynn Westermeyer, 58 , of Schofield passed away at home with her loving husband at her side on Sunday, May 21, 2017. She was born on May 7, 1959 to Philip and Thelma (Hessey) Gotchy. 
She was a loving wife, mother, friend, daughter and sister.

Lynn lived her life for everyone but herself; everyone was always first from her family to all that she knew.

She was a loyal employee of NCHCF with her focus on resident t care over rules and regulations.She is survived by her husband, her children, along with 2 brothers and 4 sisters.

She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

Visitation will be held at John J. Buettgen Funeral Home on Friday, May 26, 2017 from 10:00 a.m. until the time of Prayer Service at 12:00 p.m. Pastor Jenn Collins from Saint Andrews Lutheran Church will be officiating. On line condolences can be made at www.HonorOne.com


Michael L Dorshak

Michael L Dorshak, 77, Weston, passed away on Saturday, May 20, 2017 at Pride TLC, Weston.

He was born November 29, 1939 to Michael and Pearl (Allen) Dorshak.  He married Joan Bergs on September 2, 1961 who preceded him in death on September 4, 2016.

He is survived by his children, Linda (Robert) Sharkey, Plainfield, IL and Lori Twaroski, Wausau,  WI;  his grandchildren, Angela Twaroski (Mike Stuermer), Alex Twaroski (Emily Moore), Dr. Rebecca Twaroski Pharm D, all of Wausau and Samantha (Thomas) Shaw, Clarksville, TN; his great-grandchild, Brayleigh Joan Shaw, Clarksville TN; his siblings Donald (Mary) Dorshak, Schofield, June (Peter) Wipfli, Choctaw, OK, Keith Dorshak, Mosinee, WI; his in laws Jack (Joan) Bergs, Wausau, Donna (Paul) Feherenbach, Pittsboro, NC,  David Bergs, Puerto Vallarta Mexico and Elaine (Guy) Kryshak, Harrison Hills, WI; his special pet, Pepper; as well as many nieces and nephews.

Besides his wife, Joan, he is preceded in death by his parents, and his sister-in-law, Linda Dorshak.

The family would like to thank the staff at St. Clare’s Hospital and Marshfield Clinic and a special thank you to Pride TLC and Interim Healthcare for the excellent care during his last days. A private family service will be held.  
John J. Buettgen Funeral Home is assisting with family as this time.

Online condolences may be made at www.HonorOne.com.

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