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

John “Jack” Eckardt

John “Jack” A. Eckardt, 90, of Merrill died Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019, under the care of Heartland Hospice Care and his family at Azura Memory Care, Wausau. Jack was born on June 27, 1929, to the late Anton and Caroline (Ecker) Eckardt in Birnamwood. He married Patricia (Bychinski) on Oct. 10, 1953, in Wausau. She preceded him in death after 61 years of marriage on July 4, 2015.

John “Jack” Eckardt

Jack briefly attended St. Nazianz Seminary. Fortunately, he was not able to pass Latin and returned home. A few years later he met his one and only “Patsy” and they worked together to build a farm and family. She was the leader and he was happy to be the follower. Along the way, they ran a feeder pig business and grew ginseng. Jack was also the town of Maine constable for 16 years and a lifelong defender of the Democratic Party. Jack loved his family and friends. His favorite pastimes were playing Sheepshead, fishing, and napping … that he could do anytime, anywhere and under any circumstance. He gardened like no other. Jack loved people and particularly his brother, Bob. They were a priceless example of unconditional love. In over 80+ years there was never a cross word between them. He may not have been rich financially, but he was beyond wealthy in friends, family and fish. Jack was gifted at helping people feel comfortable, whether that meant giving them a special nickname, playing a practical joke or frying up a plate of potatoes to share, he found true joy connecting with people. There were always a cast of characters stopping by or playing in card parties at their farm with the barn that had the Chips sign painted on the back. Jack was very proud of having the barn painted for free and even getting $50 to boot! Jack will be truly missed.

Survivors include his two daughters, Sally (Bill) Gau, Wausau, and Mary (Doug) Seidl, Mount Horeb; his son, Michael (Elizabeth) Eckardt, Merrill; eight grandchildren; and his brother, Bob (Rose) Eckardt, Merrill. He was also preceded in death by his sister, Carol.

A Memorial Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, at The Church of St. Anne, 700 W. Bridge St., Wausau. Rev. Tom Lindner will preside. Burial will be at Maple Grove Cemetery, village of Maine, following the service. Friends may call from 9 a.m. until the time of service at the church. Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, Wausau, is in charge of the arrangements.

Patricia “Pat” Smith

Patricia “Pat” Louise Smith (Skusevich), 82 years young, of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, passed away at home on Sept. 6, 2019. Patricia was born on Feb. 21, 1937, in Chicago, Illinois. She was the daughter of Anthony T. Skusevich, Sr. and Faye V. Christianson.

Patricia Smith

Patricia was a mom, grandmother, great-grandmother and a friend. Everyone who knew her remembers her willingness to help regardless of the situation or circumstance. She spent many hours enjoying time with her large extended family while taking care of her many grandchildren and great grandchildren. After she was diagnosed with cancer last month, she chose to spend her last few weeks celebrating her life with her family members and friends. The time that she was able to spend with them was truly a gift and she cherished each and every visit.

During Pat’s life, she had many different jobs and experiences. When she was young, she spent time working at the Sears Tower in Chicago. After moving into Wisconsin, Pat settled just outside of Nekoosa with her family, and she helped her father open a bar called Tony’s Barn. Through this job, Pat met people from all walks of life and many who knew her fondly remember time they spent with her talking and laughing about life. After The Barn, Pat moved to Wisconsin Rapids and became a home health care worker where she once again put her shining personality on display and made new connections while helping those in need navigate the many aspects of the health care industry. When not working, Pat had numerous hobbies. Some of her favorites were listening to music, dancing and spending time with her family camping. She also loved gardening and could often be found tending her plants and flowers and then sharing these with her family and friends. However, one of the things she enjoyed best was sitting on one of her favorite mother’s day presents, a swing, where she watched her grandchildren play. Pat’s family was truly the most important thing to her and she tried to let each of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren know that they were special and loved.

Patricia is survived by two sons, Anthony M. Skusevich of Wisconsin Rapids and Thomas Higdon of the Philippines; three daughters, Michelle Vanderville of Summit Lake, Priscilla Higdon of Nekoosa and Teresa (Daryll) De La Cruz of Stevens Point; 10 grandchildren, Rachelle Marceau, Angie Higdon, Miranda (Jb) Moody, Eddie Lancour, Robbie Keenan, John (Auburn) Higdon, Alex (Heather) Arriaga, Denae Lewis, Christian De La Cruz, Delita De La Cruz; 17 great-grandchildren, Milenna, Quan, Matthew, Lilly, Elysia, Jasmine, Josiah, Maya, Alex, Aaliyah, Kanye, Tatiyana, Loronzo, Arriana, Ali, Taya, and Kyler; and one four-legged grandson, Houdini.

Pat was preceded in death by her parents; brother, Anthony Skusevich, Jr.; son, Edward Higdon; and grandson, Blake Higdon.

The family would like to thank Riverview Aspirus Critical Care, Edgewater Haven, and Heartland Hospice for the exemplary care that Pat received and all that they did to make Pat’s dream come true of being surrounded by her family and friends during the last few weeks of her life.

A Celebration of Life for Pat will be held at a later date. The John J. Buettgen Funeral Home/Mid-Wisconsin Cremation Society are assisting the family. For online condolences, please visit

Jacquelyn Mondroski

Jacquelyn “Jackie” Mondroski, 30, of Wausau, Wisconsin, passed away Sept. 3, 2019, at Froedtert Hospital in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, surrounded by her family after a long battle with depression and medical issues. Jackie was born Sept. 21, 1988, to her parents Julie A. Mondroski (Gavinski) and James A. Mondroski.

Jacquelyn Mondroski

In high school, Jackie worked for and volunteered at the Marathon County Humane Society and as an adult she worked for Sauk County Animal Rescue, Eyes of Hope Animal Shelter, VCA. Companion Care and PetSmart. Her entire life was devoted to caring for and protecting animals of all sorts.

Jackie leaves behind her loving parents James and Julie Mondroski, her beloved brother Geoffrey, his fiancée Erica, her dog Mishka, and her two cats Charles and Gimpy. She also leaves behind many aunts, uncles and cousins who were very dear to her. Anyone who knew Jackie knew she was the most kindhearted, unselfish, beautiful person they could ever meet.

Jackie will forever be missed, but never forgotten.

Memorial services will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. with a eulogy being done at 5:30 p.m. at the John J. Buettgen Funeral Home, 948 Grand Ave., Schofield, WI 54476.

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