Obituaries are a service of Brainard Funeral Home, with locations in Wausau and Weston.

Bernard Crisman

It is with great sadness that we have to say good-bye to Bernard Mark Crisman. He passed away peacefully on Oct. 21, 2018. We were fortunate enough to lean many values and lifelong skills from him during his 77 years of life.

Bernard Crisman

Bernie was born in Chicago, Illinois, on Sept. 4, 1941, to Bernard and Grace (Marquardt) Crisman. His expertise as a meat cutter started at Midway Airport and Certified store in Chicago, then Harry and Bernies in Hayward, and then finishing his career at Quality Foods in Wausau. Occasionally, he provided a helping hand at Zillman’s during deer season. After his retirement, he served as a custodian at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church and showed his servant heart by volunteering in various ministries. He volunteered at the Oak Lawn, Illinois, and Bass Lake, Hayward, Wisconsin, fire departments. When the Cubs were in the World Series in 2016, while on vacation, he watched the games along with his family in three different states: Colorado, Arizona and Wisconsin. Bernie always maintained his loyalty to the Chicago Cubs, Bears and Blackhawks even though he lived in Packers Country. He also cherished the time he spent polka dancing.

On July 4, 2001, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he received a gift of life with a liver transplant. He enjoyed gardening all his life and was proud of the lawn that he kept. His organizational skills were evident just by looking at his garage.

Bernie was blessed with a large and loving family who were by his side til the end. Bernie is survived by his wife Joan (Kutil) Crisman, his children Mike and Gina Crisman, Greg Crisman, Peg and Dennis Bindl, David and Beckie Crisman, Kim and Butch Suchomski, Daniel and Shellie Crisman, and Karen and Doug Artz, and Bill (Amber Oelke) Steidl and son-in-law Dan Brandt. His grandchildren include Corey, Briana, Jessica, Tyler, Jennifer, Michael, Jordan, Elliot, Josh, Chase, Jack and Ty. And three beautiful great-grandchildren Brooklyn, Mason, and Isabelle.  Bernie’s sister Beverly (Charlie) Chantell, Gail (John) Makowski, brothers-in-law Mark (Leigh Ann) Kutil and Richard (Rebecca) Kutil.

He was preceded in death by his parents Bernard and Grace Crisman and brother Roger Crisman, sister-in-law Mary Ann (Vilcek) Crisman, father and mother-in-law Robert J. Kutil Jr. and Dolores Kutil, and brother-in-law Bobby Kutil Jr.

The family wishes to thank Aspirus Wausau Hospital, including the Palliative Care Unit, for their compassion, care and loving support. We would also like to extend our appreciation to University of Wisconsin Hospitals Transplant unit for the care provided to Bernard before, during and after his transplant.

Bernie’s family wants to express their sincere gratitude to the donor family who chose organ donation. We were blessed with 17 more years of memories with him.

Memorial Service will be held at noon on Friday, Oct. 26, 2018, at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 600 Stevens Drive, Wausau. Visitation will be from 9 a.m. until the time of service at the church Friday.

Brainard Funeral Home is assisting the family. Online condolences may be given at

John Spychalla

John Clarence Spychalla, 68, passed away on Oct. 18, 2018, in Woodruff, Wisconsin. He was born to the late Philip and Arliss (Bretl) Spychalla on April 7, 1950. He thoroughly enjoyed his time working in Research and Development for J.I. Case and in sales for Holiday Wholesale.

John Spychalla

John was the easiest guy to make friends with, who enjoyed his time with his friends and family. He played a great game of golf back in the day but could also be found enjoying his time at home with a good book or out boating and camping. He will be remembered for being an avid Packers fan, and for his extraordinary sense of humor.

He is survived by his children, Chris (Sarah) Spychalla, Jody Spychalla, Nicole (Mike) Clark, Jennifer (Chris) Blaschka, and Jesse Spychalla; his siblings, Theresa (fiancé Kenneth Russ) Spychalla, Joseph (Mary) Spychalla, and Peter (Carla) Spychalla; along with his three grandchildren.

A Memorial Service will be held at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018, at Brainard Funeral Home – Everest Chapel, 5712 Memorial Court, Weston. The Rev. Louis Britto will officiate. Visitation will be held from 3 p.m. until the time of service at the funeral home. Online condolences may be given at

Roger Sagstetter

Roger Sagstetter, 80, of Wausau died Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2018, at Benedictine Living Community, Wausau. Roger was born May 11, 1938, to the late Clarence and Edna (Knudsen) Sagstetter in Wausau. Roger married Lorraine Treichel on Sept. 10, 1960.

Roger Sagstetter

Roger was a beloved potato chip and cookie eater for which he received his nickname “The Cookie Monster” by his family. Roger was a carpenter by trade, he was also in the Army Reserves and later worked at Linetec. Roger was blessed with many talents, including wood working and parenting. Building furniture, decor and houses came easy to him, but most remembered by his children will be the legacy of fatherhood. Roger was a hard-working man who enjoyed walks, tinkering in his garage, fishing, trips to the casino and watching the Packers and Nascar. Roger will be remembered by family and friends as being an easy-going jokester.

Roger’s family believes he was called by God to help prepare the rooms in heaven. They look forward to taking the tour someday and rocking with him on the front porch of Christ.

Survivors include his wife Lorraine; their five children, Tami (John) Schuster, Riverview, Florida, Tod Sagstetter, Wausau, Jodi Sagstetter, Wausau, Janel (Tony) Hartjes, Deforest, Wisconsin, and Sara (Stephen) Riehle, Wausau; six grandchildren, Janessa, Jennifer, Sami, Sophie, Jordyn and Kaleb. Roger was preceded in death by his first grandson, Brayden Hartjes and his parents Clarence and Edna Sagstetter.

A memorial visitation will be held on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m. at Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, 1302 Sixth St., Wausau.

Online condolences may be expressed at

Elsie Meier

Elsie A. Meier, 97, Wausau, formerly of Athens, died Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018, at the Aspirus Hospice House, Wausau. Elsie was born July 20, 1921, to the late Benjamin and Martha (Grosskreutz) Stark, in the town of Wien. She married Theodore M. Meier Sr. on June 12, 1944, in Dubuque, Iowa. He preceded her in death on Oct. 21, 2000.

Elsie Meier

After graduation from Wausau High, Elsie became a member of Local 374, International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union, at the former Marathon Rubber plant. Elsie became a farmer’s wife to Ted and raised her family as a farm family. She and Ted left a legacy of hard work, farming, forestry and a good life for their children. Those who knew Elsie will remember her for her baking/cooking and peaceful temperament.

Survivors include her three children, Theodore (Beverly A.) Meier, Athens, Matthew (Beverly J.) Meier, Edgar, and Susan (Richard H.) Frahm, Wausau; six grandchildren, Patricia (Todd) Thurs, Shannon (Cecil) Meier, Corissa (Paul) Schraufnagel, Deanna (Jonathan) Miller, Roseanne Meier and Richard L. (Laurie) Frahm; and 13 great-grandchildren, Autumn, Ryan, Sawyer, Carson, Vienna, Koltyn, Aspen, Croix, Oliver, Finley, Annika, Thorsten and Elwood.  She was also preceded in death by one granddaughter, Pamela, and two sisters, Verna Fletcher and Alma Yessa.

A graveside service will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, at St. John the Baptist Cemetery on Wuertzburg Road, in the town of Johnson, south of Athens. A gathering of family and friends will be from 10:30 a.m. until the service at 11 a.m. Peterson/Kramer Funeral Home, Wausau, is in charge of arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made in Elsie’s memory to the Aspirus Hospice House.

Online condolences may be expressed at

Donald “Sandy” Sandberg

Donald “Sandy”, because of his sandy-brown hair, A. Sandberg, 88, Rib Mountain, was taken from his family, Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018, at Ascension Saint Clare’s Hospital, Weston.

Donald “Sandy” Sandberg

He was born Jan. 10, 1930, in Oshkosh, son of the late George and Frieda (Ehlert) Sandberg. On Sept. 3, 1960, he married Jane M. Holloman-Shampine in Pine City, Minnesota. She survives.

Don joined the U.S. Navy when he was 17 and served on the USS Boxer during the end of World War II and the beginning Korean War. He was assigned to the Task Force 77 in overtaking of Inchon Bay.

Don worked as executive vice-president at Anson Gilkey in Merrill for 21 years. He also worked for Modu-Line Windows, Inc. in Wausau until his retirement at age 79. Following his retirement, he enjoyed working as an accountant for his daughter and son-in-law’s business, Gagliano Eastgate Inn in Watertown. He was a member of the Masons (32nd Degree), the Shriners and the Knights Templar.

Don loved to travel around the world with his wife, Jane. He and Jane especially enjoyed their vacations to Hawaii.

He was a loving and caring, husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend. He will be deeply missed.

Survivors include his loving wife of 58 years, Jane Sandberg, Rib Mountain, three children, Elizabeth (Joseph) Gagliano, Greenfield, Kathleen (Bryant) Calmes, Wausau and Brody Sandberg, Rib Mountain; 11 grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by two children, Jason Sandberg and Pamela Gomez; one step-daughter, Suzanne Holliday; and one sister, Sharon Stepen.

A time of remembrance will be held at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018, at Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home 1302 Sixth St., Wausau. Visitation will be from 3 p.m. until 5 the funeral home. Burial will be at Restlawn Memorial Park at a later date.

Online condolences may be expressed at

Jerry Jacobi

Jerry L. Jacobi, 74, passed away at his home in the town of Kronenwetter. He was born July 14, 1944, to Alvina (Imhoff) Jacobi and the late Harvey Jacobi. Jerry graduated from Wausau Senior High School. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and served in Panama.  Jerry was a machine operator at Weyerhausaer Corp. in Rothschild until his retirement in 1999.

Jerry Jacobi

Jerry enjoyed spending time outdoors, whether it be gardening, planting flowers and fruit trees or spending time at his cottage up north. He had an artistic flair and created many unique works of art. His hobbies included winemaking, Nascar racing, raising birds (parakeets, pigeons, chickens and a pet parrot, Coco) and everything Harley. He had an adventurous spirit and traveled many places on his Harley motorcyle or in his motorhome.  Jerry loved good times, good company and good conversation. He will be sadly missed.

Survivors include his mother, Alvina of Wausau, brother, Joel (Sheryl) of Wausau, sisters, Jeanne (Jim) Lawrie of Wausau, Judy Riehle of Tomahawk, Joyce (Gary) Guss of Weston and many nieces and nephews.

Memorial services will be at 11 a.m., Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018, at Memorial Chapel Mausoleum at Restlawn Memorial Park, Wausau. Father Robert Thorn will officiate. Visitation will be Tuesday from 10 a.m. until the time of services. Full military honors will be provided by VFW Burns Post #388. You may sign our family guest book at

Kathryn Brown

Kathryn Marie Brown, 72, of Wausau passed away Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018, at North Central Health Care surrounded by her family.

Kathryn Brown

She was born on Aug. 16, 1946, in Hayward to the late Lee and Elizabeth (Bigboy) Brown Sr.

Kathryn grew up in northern Wisconsin and moved to Iowa in her younger years and eventually made her way back to Wisconsin and lived in the Wausau area for over 30 years. Kathryn had a huge heart and loved to take care of others and extended her help in any way for family and friends. She and her special friend the late Ron Maskewit always opened there home to anyone in need and made sure they were well cared for. Being a true Wisconsinite Katie loved the Packers, cheering them on and enjoining the special time with family and friends. She was also proud of her Native American roots and enjoyed volunteering at the Wisconsin Indian Center in Wausau.

She is survived by her son William Brown, Wausau; siblings Elizabeth Houle, Odanah; Lee (Brenda) Brown Jr., Black River Falls; William (Gail) Browne Sr., Bangor; Beatrice Brown,Odanah; Phyllis (Bruce) Tutor, Odanah; and her special four legged friends Wiggles and Missy.

She was preceded in death by her parents, sisters Rosemary (Leonard) Bigboy, Theresa Bennett, Ella Bigboy, half-brother Orville Brown and brothers in law Cletus Bennett and Carroll Houle, special friend Ron Maskewit.

A celebration of Kathryn’s life will be on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Siga Funmaker Center, W17634 Radke Road, Wittenberg. The family will have commit service at 2 p.m. Sunday at Siga Funmaker Center. You may sign the family guest book at

Betty Kettunen

Betty Jane Kettunen, 94, Wausau, died Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018, at her home in the Garden Apartments, Wausau, under the care of Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services.

Betty Kettunen

Betty was born June 8, 1924, at St. Mary’s Hospital in Wausau to the late James and Viola (Laffin) Wood Sr. She was a 1942 graduate of Wausau High School and went on to earn her teaching certification from UW-Stevens Point. Betty initially taught at the Little Red School House (now residing in Marathon Park) in the town of Stettin, later putting her wonderful skills as a seamstress to work at Prange’s. She married Ralph Kettunen on July 17, 1946, at Immanuel Lutheran Church. The couple was blessed with five children: David, Dennis, Kristine, Randy and Craig. Betty and Ralph celebrated 53 years together prior to his death on Feb. 1, 2000.

Betty was a loving mother who valued being close to her family throughout her life. She was very close to her parents, taking care of them late into their lives. Betty was an excellent cook and baker, especially known for her Finnish coffee cake and Christmas cookies as well as homemade candies. Her favorite times were spent in her flower garden (earning her Garden of the Month multiple times) and she continued this passion into her late 80s. Betty was also active with the Immanuel Lutheran Altar Guild, played in several card clubs and bowled in couple’s league with Ralph in earlier years. She also enjoyed walking, painting ceramic Santa Clauses and reading later in life.

She is survived by her loving children, David (Thelma “Willy”), Dennis (Peggy), Kristine Jenkins, Randy (Cindy) and Craig; grandchildren, Samantha (Jeff) Bartnik, Brad (Sara Berhow), Jody (Shana), Siiri (Michael) Forbes, Alison (Paul) Ryan, Jon (Ginny) Jenkins, Philip (Maggie Rose Danielson) Jenkins, Travis (Shannon), and Michael (Jolene Zannino); 15 great-grandchildren; dear friends, Coreen and Mike Immel; and extended family and friends. She is preceded in death by her siblings, James Jr., Kenneth “Butch”, Roger and Guy and special friend, Cy Koppa.

The memorial service for Betty will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018, at Immanuel Lutheran Church – ELCA (630 Adams St., Wausau).  Rev. Dr. Niveen Sarras will officiate. Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until the time of service on Saturday at the church. Inurnment will be at Restlawn Memorial Park. Helke Funeral Home is assisting the family with the arrangements; you may sign our family guestbook at

In lieu of flowers, memorial may be directed to the Marathon County Public Library (MCPL Foundation, 300 N. First St., Wausau, WI 54403) or Immanuel Lutheran Church (630 Adams St., Wausau).

A sincere word of appreciation goes to the staff of Garden Apartments and the nurses and staff of Interim Healthcare and Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services for their compassionate care for Betty.

Jane Gahnz

Jane Rose Gahnz, 93, of South Carolina, formerly of Wausau, passed away on Monday, Oct. 15, 2018, at Tidelands Waccamaw Community Hospital in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina.

Jane Gahnz

Jane was born in Green Bay, Wisconsin, on Dec. 14, 1924, to the late George and Celia (Gilsoul) Iversen. She met, fell in love and married Sheldon Arthur Gahnz on June 5, 1948, at St. Mary’s Church in Wausau. Jane was an Insurance Statistician and Underwriter for Employers Insurance of Wausau for over 32 years and Aetna Insurance for 11 years. She was always a hard worker and managed home and work with ease. She was an amazing cook and would impress her family and friends with her culinary skills — many of her recipes have become family traditions. Jane loved to shop, especially for clothes, and was always considered to be on the cutting edge of fashion. In retirement, she enjoyed walking on the beach and taking in the sunshine of South Carolina, along with traveling to see her family. These travels took her from Europe to California and included a drive across the United States.

Jane is survived by her daughter, Kathy Jane (William) Georgen; grandchildren, Katherine (Robert) Carpenter and Matthew Georgen; two great-grandchildren, Dwyer William and Laura Jane; three nephews, Jerry (Debbie) Schultz, Craig (Cathy) Flagel, and Hal (Kathy) Bruyere and her niece, Barb (Mark) Splinter. She is further survived by her brothers, Franklin and Robert Iversen.

In addition to her parents, Jane was preceded in death by her husband, Sheldon, on Nov. 1, 1970; her sisters, Katherine Bruyere, Dorothy Schultz and Georgianna Flagel.

A memorial mass will take place at 11 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 5, 2018, at St. Matthew Parish, 221 S. 28th Ave. Wausau. Father Robert Thorn will officiate. Visitation will take place from 10:30 a.m. until the time of services at the church. Burial will take place at Restlawn Memorial Park. Please sign the family guestbook at

Thomas Dashner

Thomas C. Dashner, 71, of Wisconsin Rapids passed away on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018.

He was born on March 24, 1947, in Wisconsin Rapids, to the late Lloyd and Kathryn (Passineau) Dashner, and attended Lincoln High School. On May 25, 1968, he was married to Jane Arnold at Saints Peter & Paul Catholic Church. Jane preceded him in death on Oct. 2, 2017.

Tom had worked at Wisconsin Flowgate & Culvert for many years and was a self-employed welder.

His interests included classic cars, especially his 1951 Chevy, and he was an avid Green Bay Packers fan.

He is survived by his daughter, Myra Dashner; son, Rod (Roxann) Dashner; and brother, Lloyd (Sharon) Dashner.

The memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 26, 2018, at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 10611 Highway 13 South, Wisconsin Rapids. Pastor Paul Tullberg will officiate. The John J. Buettgen Funeral Home/Mid-Wisconsin Cremation Society is assisting the family. For online condolences, please visit

Elsie Rew

Elsie E. Rew, 98, of Birnamwood passed away on Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018, at Autumn Lane Family Care, Birnamwood, under the care of LeRoyer Hospice, Antigo.

Elsie Rew

She was born on Sept. 17, 1920, in Princeton, Wisconsin, to the late Ferdinand and Natalie (Kunst) Raasch. On Aug. 27, 1941, she married Arthur Rew in Shawano. He preceded her in death on Sept. 28, 2001.

Elsie loved to cook and bake, and always had a huge garden. She was a member of the Birnamwood American Legion Auxiliary and Trinity Lutheran Church Altar Guild for many years. She enjoyed playing Liverpool Rummy with her card club, and especially loved staying up on all of the local gossip. When her husband was diagnosed with dementia, she became his dedicated caretaker, insisting on keeping him at home with her.

Survivors include three children, Ronald Rew of Fort Atkinson, Gerald (Roseanne) Rew, and Donna (Jonathan Drost) Diers, all of Birnamwood; seven grandchildren, Kristin (Ken) Blazek of Fargo, North Dakota, Karyn Rew of Janesville, Kathy (Billy) Riley III of Deltona, Florida, Kevin (Amy) Diers of Birnamwood, Keith Diers of Birnamwood, Krystle Diers of Hatley and Kassandra (Michael) Kraus of Rhinelander; 12 great-grandchildren, Daniel Tipping, Savana Rew, Liam and Libby Reilly, Katlyn, Kendra and Kensi Diers, Clay Franks, Kira and Kyle Votis, Karissa Snyder, and Nickalous Kraus; two great-great grandchildren, Tannor Suski and Treyton Scott; one sister, Doris Wieland of Munster, Indiana, and two sisters-in-law, Betty Rew of Antigo and Patricia Rew of Roseburg, Oregon.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Ferdinand and Natalie, her husband Arthur, and three sisters, Arlene Bastil, Viola Raasch and Verna Loehrl.

Funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 26, 2018, at Trinity Lutheran Church, Birnamwood. Rev. Betty Wyatt will officiate. Burial will be in Forest Cemetery, Birnamwood. Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until the time of service on Friday at the church. Schmidt & Schulta Funeral Home, Birnamwood, is assisting the family with arrangements.

Memories and condolences may be given at or on Facebook at Schmidt & Schulta Funeral Home.