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Wausau area obituaries: Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020

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

Betty Blumenkamp

Betty Blumenkamp age 97, passed away December 30, 2019.

Born in Wausau to Emil & Mary (Manning) Tesch.

Betty married George Blumenkamp on September 17, 1949.

Her faith in God and volunteer work a very important part of her life.

She enjoyed everything in nature. Feeding the birds was a daily activity. She always loved having a four-legged dog or cat with her. She also has a kitty kennel at the Humane Society of Marathon County with her name on it.

She loved to read and do crossword puzzles. She followed the Packers, Brewers, Bucks and NASCAR racing.

She lived in her own home and on her own terms right up to the end. We will miss her spunky feistiness. Sweet Dreams to our Aunt Betty.

She is survived by her niece Terri (Gene) Zunker, nephews; Alan (Lynn) Tesch, Scott (Victoria) Tesch, Jeff (Patty) Tesch all the Wausau area. Also, Ted Paske of Denver, CO. She also had a great niece and many great nephews and great great nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband, brother Wallace, sister in law Betty Tesch and nephew Arden Tesch.

Funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, January 3, 2020 at Brainard Funeral Home – Wausau Chapel, 522 Adams Street. Rev. Jennifer Hoffman will officiate. Visitation will be held from 9:00 a.m. until the time of service at the funeral home. Burial will be at Pine Grove Cemetery. In lieu of flowers – memorials may be directed to St Stephen’s Lutheran Church of Wausau or to any of the local area Humane Societies.

Online condolences may be shared at http://www.brainardfuneral.com


Cheryl (Borchardt) Filber

Cheryl K. Filber “Cherie,” 68, of Wausau, passed away on Monday, December 30, 2019, while under the care of Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services.

Cherie was born in Wausau to the late Charles Schenkat and Idabelle (John) Borchardt on May 16, 1951. She married Gary Filber on October 27, 1973. Cherie retired from Aspirus Wausau Hospital, where she worked as a Dietary Aide for 43 years.

Crafting, sewing, making ceramics, knitting and quilting were some of the things that Cherie enjoyed doing in her free time. She was a member of several sewing and quilting groups. Over the years, Cherie created many beautiful gifts for family and friends. She also sewed many baby gowns for the “Lost Angels Project.” Cherie will be dearly missed by all who knew and loved her.

Cherie is survived by her loving husband, Gary; mother-in-law, Beverly Filber; her sisters-in-law, Cindy (Bruce) Schulz, Shelly (Bev) Filber and Lory (Kim) McClellan; as well as several nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents, Cherie was preceded in death by her brother, Charles Borchardt and her sister, Jeanne (Rozek) Munn.

A celebration of life will be held at 12 noon on Saturday, January 11, 2020 at St. Peter Lutheran Church, 1351 Grand Ave, Schofield, WI 54476. Pastor Jeffrey Mahnke will officiate. Visitation will take place from 10:00 am until the time of services at the church.

Family and friends may go to helke.com to leave online condolences.

The family wishes to thank Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services, The staff at Hospice House, and Cherie’s niece Jessica for their care and dedication for Cherie.

In lieu of flowers memorials may be directed to the family.


Caroline Ninnemann

Caroline Ninnemann, 91, passed away on Monday, December 30, 2019 at Applegate Terrace Assisted Living. She was an extremely kind, patient, and caring woman who was loved and admired by family and friends.

She was born to the late Herbert and Alice Schuetz. She had four brothers: David (deceased at 5 months), Charles, Dale, and Gary. As a child, she was raised on a dairy farm and attended a one room country school for 8 grades. In 1945 she graduated from Wausau High School and was employed at Employers Mutual Insurance Co. (now Liberty Mutual) as a Secretary in the home office Underwriting Department.

Caroline married Melvin Ninnemann on Nov. 20, 1948. They built a home in Wausau, and had three children: Duane, Deane, and Diane. After Duane was born, she became a ‘stay at home’ Mom and participated in her children’s school activities. As a family, they enjoyed many long-distance car trips all over the U.S., fishing up north, celebrating holidays together, having cook-outs, playing cards and dice, and visiting friends, neighbors, and relatives. She also enjoyed going out to eat, sewing, baking, and working in her vegetable and flower gardens, as well as, her raspberry patch.

Caroline was a life-long member of St. Stephen Lutheran Church (Wausau); baptized in 1928 and confirmed in 1942 by Rev. Spiegel. As a youth, she attended Luther League. As an adult, she served as Secretary on the Church Council, President of the Women of the Church, and was Kitchen Chairman. She was a member of Dorcas Circle (now called WELCA), led Bible Studies, served funeral luncheons, and participated in many of their group activities. She sewed hundreds of quilts at home and at church every year for Lutheran World Relief. She taught Sunday school for 19 years and was a Bethel Bible School Teacher (for adults) for 2 years. In addition, she delivered Meals on Wheels to the home-bound, and assisted residents of Colonial Manor attend worship services for 15 years.

Survivors include two children, Duane (Vicky) Ninnemann of Ringle and Diane (Aaron) Krueger of Wausau; five grandchildren, Jeffrey (Karin) Ninnemann of Moorpark, CA, Michael, Kirk, and Mark Ninnemann of the Wausau area, and Lisa (DJ) Fett of South St. Paul, MN; four great-grandchildren, Reis, Zander, Britta, and Maverick; two brothers, Dale (Barb) Schuetz of Columbia Heights, MN and Gary (Jeanne) Schuetz of Wausau; former daughter-in-law, Melanie Ohnstad of Roseville, MN; two sisters-in-law, Ruth (LeRoy) Reinicke and Jean (Harold) Ninnemann; and many cousins, nieces, and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Melvin, her son, Deane, her parents, and two brothers, David and Charles (Margie) Schuetz.

Funeral services will be at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 4, 2020, at St. Stephen Lutheran Church, 512 McClellan Street, Wausau. Pastor Jennifer Hoffman will officiate. Visitation will be at church on January 4 from 10:00 a.m. until the time of services. Burial will be at Pine Grove Cemetery at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, January 8, 2020.

You may sign the family guestbook at http://www.helke.com.

We would like to extend a special thank you to the staff at Applegate Terrace and Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services for their kind care.

Memorials may be directed to St. Stephen Lutheran Church, Wausau, Wisconsin.


Gregory “Greg” Brown

Gregory J. Brown, 55, Wausau passed away Sunday, December 29, 2019 while under the care of Ministry Hospice at his home.

He was born November 27, 1964 in Chicago, son of the late Terence J. and Barbara (Smielewski) Brown. On August 18, 2006 he married Christine Brown in Kalamazoo, MI. She survives.

Greg was a security guard at the Great Dane in Wausau for more than three years. Some of his favorite pastimes included building model rockets, camping, target shooting and being in the outdoors. Greg enjoyed listening to all kinds of music most especially Pink Floyd.

Survivors include his wife, Christine Brown, Wausau, his children, Nick (Beth) Brown, Buchanan, MI, Alex (Stephanie) Brown, LaPorte, IN, Christopher (Michelle) Brown, New Buffalo, MI, Ashley (Austin) Nelson, Otsego, MI and Eric (Morgan) Rustenholtz, Kalamazoo, MI, six grandchildren, Bella, McKenzie, Jaxson and Raelyn Brown, Joseph Brown and David Conklin and his sister, Karen Fredrickson, Three Oaks, MI.

Besides his parents he was preceded in death by his sister, Cathy Brown.

Memorial services for Greg in Wausau will be held at 6:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 8, 2020 at the Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home, 3400 Stewart Avenue, Wausau. Visitation will be held from 4:30 p.m. Wednesday until the time of services all at the Stewart Avenue funeral home. Following the services Wednesday evening a time of celebration and light luncheon will be held at Great Dane in the private dining room. Another Memorial service will be held at 12:30 p.m. Friday, January 3, 2020 at First Christian Church, Rolling Prairie, IN. In lieu of flowers memorials may be directed to ASPCA or a local humane society of your choice. Online condolences may be expressed at http://www.petersonkraemer.com


Geraldine “Gerry” Fechhelm

Geraldine “Gerry” Fechhelm (Blume) age 82, passed away on Dec. 31, 2019.
She was born on August 29, 1937 in Marathon, WI, the daughter of Robert and Marie (Kamenick) Blume. She graduated from Marathon High School in 1955. Gerry married Thomas Fechhelm on July 5, 1958 in Marathon, WI. Gerry retired from the State of Wisconsin Job Service. Her hobbies included baking, gardening, camping and touring the United States with Tom in their RV.

Gerry is survived by her husband Tom and their children Linda (Ed) Bartus, Geneva, IL; Richard, Wausau, WI; Kathleen Gregory, Waunakee, WI; Ronald, Wausau, WI as well as grandchildren Quinn Devlin, Garrett Bartus; Aaron, Kyle and Lauren Gregory; and two great-grandchildren, Brody and Adeline Devlin. She is further survived by her brother Marvin (Beverly) Blume, sister-in-law Mary Fechhelm and numerous nieces, nephews and extended family. She was proceeded in death by her parents and sisters Dorothy Springer and RoseMarie Dreikosen as well as numerous sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law.
A mass of Christian burial will take place at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, January 4, 2020 at Resurrection Catholic Church, 621 N. 2nd Street, Wausau, with Rev. Msgr. Mark Pierce officiating. Visitation will take place from 10:00 AM until the time of service at the church. There will be a meal following the ceremony. Gerry will be buried at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Marathon, WI at a later date.

The family wishes to thank Brightstar Senior Living and Agrace HospiceCare for all of their wonderful care given to Gerry. Memorials may be made to Church of the Resurrection or to Agrace HospiceCare.

Peterson Funeral Home is assisting with arrangements. Online condolences may be expressed at http://www.petersonkraemer.com


Milton Wisler

Milton J. Wisler, 90, Wausau, died Monday December 30, 2019 at Aspirus Wausau Hospital.

Survivors include three children, Alan Wisler, Wausau, Dale (Lisa) Wisler, Atkinson, New Hampshire, Gwen (Paul) Wood, Mound, Minnesota; three grandchildren, Nicholas, Rachel and Tommy.

The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11:00 a.m. Saturday January 4, 2019, at St. Anne Parish, Wausau. Rev. Tom Lindner will preside. Burial will be in Restlawn Memorial Park, Wausau. Visitation will be on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. until the time of services at the church. In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund is being established.

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


Larry L Wilde

Larry L. Wilde, 69, of Wausau passed away on December 28, 2019 at his home in Rib Mountain. He was born to Llewellyn and Christine (Slaminski) Wilde on March 11, 1950. Larry worked for the Marathon County Highway Department for 43 years.

In 1988 Larry purchased a cabin up north on the Willow Flowage. He spent many weekends there making a lot of great memories with his boys and friends. He loved sitting by the fire, going for pontoon rides, polkas on Sundays, NASCAR, going to Hodag, but most of all he loved to be with his two sons and grandchildren.

He was a great father to his boys and a best friend to everyone.

He is survived by his two sons, Danny (Gail) Wilde of Wausau and Todd (Lea) Wilde of Wausau. Sisters, Beverly (Clyde) Passow, Minocqua; Shirley Hoffman and Janice Hoffman both of Wausau, and five grandchildren; Erika, Carmen, Shelby, Gavin and Deegan.

He is preceded in death by his father Llewellyn, mother Christine, brothers, Tommy and Jack “Kuba.”Per Larry’s wishes there will be no service.

He will be laid to rest at Restlawn Memorial Park in the spring.

Mid-Wisconsin Cremation Society is assisting the family at this time. Online condolences can be expressed at www.HonorOne.com


Gail Spranger

Gail Marie Spranger, 73 of Weston, died on Thursday, December 26, 2019 at her home under the care of her family and Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services.
Gail was born on December 19, 1946 in Tigerton, the daughter of the late Jesse and Adeline Low.
On July 31, 1965, Gail was united in marriage to Gary Spranger at St. Philomena Catholic Church, Birnamwood. He survives.
Following their wedding, the couple moved to Illinois for 53 years before returning to Wisconsin in July of 2018 to be near family.
Gail’s career included Buying, Accounting, Human Resources, with her last job as Office/Human Resource Manager for Sycamore Precision, in Genoa, Illinois for 18 years.
Gail was actively involved in religious and community service work. She loved planting flowers, gardening in the spring and the beautiful colors of fall. Her hobbies included knitting and crocheting. She loved playing dice and games with family and friends.
Gail is survived by her husband, Gary; two sons, Greg Spranger of Burlington, WI and Gary Spranger of Weston; two grandsons, Garett (friend Amber) Spranger of Green Bay and Conner Spranger of Burlington; one great-granddaughter, Alana of Green Bay; three brothers, Ken Low of Birnamwood, Curt (Evelyn) Low of Birnamwood and Kevin (Denise) Low of Eland; two sisters, Carolyn (Doc) Pfefferle of Birnamwood and Julie (Jerry) Trebus of Weston; one brother-in-law, Chet Matz of Eland and one sister-in-law, Helen Low of Rochester, MN.
Gail was preceded in death by her parents, Jesse and Adeline Low; brothers, Donald and Robert Low and sisters, Mary Low and Sharon Matz.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11AM on Saturday, December 28, 2019 at St. Agnes Catholic Church, Weston (Callon). Fr. Greg Bohren will officiate. Visitation will be from 4PM to 8PM on Friday at Schmidt & Schulta Funeral Home, Wittenberg and again on Saturday from 9:30AM until the time of Mass at the church.
Memories and messages of support may be shared at schmidtschulta.com.
The family suggests memorials be given to Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services for the wonderful care given to Gail and her family.


Arlen Dale Koepke

Arlen Dale Koepke, 83, passed away on Thursday, December 26, 2019 at his home with his loving family by his side. He endured a two year battle with kidney and bladder cancer.
Arlen was born on the Koepke farm in the town of Germania, Shawano County, on May 8, 1936 to Arthur and Elvira (Buboltz) Koepke.
He was baptized, confirmed and attended St. John’s Lutheran School in Tigerton, two years at Concordia in Milwaukee and graduated from Tigerton High School, class of 1954.
Arlen and a group of lifelong friends moved to Chicago to work for Marshall Fields and Cadillac Motor Car Division. In the summer of 1957 he met his future wife at the Caroline Ballroom. Arlen and Vivian (Boreen) were married June 7, 1958 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Tigerton. They celebrated 61 years of marriage. In 1959, they moved to Kenosha, Wisconsin where they lived and raised their family for 33 years. Arlen worked for American Motors / Chrysler and retired after 30 years. He also had many part time jobs. He was a member of Bethany Lutheran Church, Kenosha where he served on the Church Council and was Financial Secretary for many years. He was a member of AA and had 56 years of sobriety. Arlen was on the Steering Committee to establish Shoreland Lutheran High School in Kenosha (Somers) from where all three of his children and two grandchildren graduated. In 1992, Arlen and Vivian moved back to Tigerton to enjoy their retirement. They also enjoyed many winters in Mission, Texas. Arlen was a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church in the town of Morris. He was also a founding member of the Embarrass River Lions Club where he served as their first president and was awarded the Melvin Jones Award in 2015. He enjoyed golfing, playing cards, auctions and rummage sales.
Arlen is survived by his loving wife, Vivian; daughters, Kelly Daugherty of Libertyville, IL, and Kim (Phill) Greenwood of East Troy, WI; grandchildren, Mathew (Alison) Luebbers of Brookfield, WI, Katie Ulwelling of Libertyville, IL, Kevin (Julia) Ulwelling of Sussex, WI , and Melissa Luebbers of East Troy, WI; great granddaughters, Winnie and Edie Luebbers; brother Darold (Diane) Koepke of Tigerton, sister-in-law, Karen Koepke of Pleasant Prairie, WI, and sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Maxine and Gordon Graetz of Clintonville.
He will also be missed by many other relatives and friends.
Arlen was preceded in death by his parents; son, Brian Koepke; son-in-law, Rick Daugherty; brother, Merlen Koepke and sister and brother-in-law, Janice and Gary Gauthier.
A memorial service will be held at 1:00 PM on Sunday, December 29, 2019 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in the town of Morris. Rev. John Hielsberg will officiate. A private burial will be in the parish cemetery at a later date. Visitation will be on Sunday from 11:30 AM until the time of service at the church.
Schmidt Schulta Funeral Home, Wittenberg is assisting the family with arrangements. Memories and messages of support may be shared at schmidtschulta.com.
The family requests memorials to Immanuel Lutheran Church.
A very special Thank You for the care and comfort provided by Theda Care at Home Hospice, especially Kristi and Jolene – Hospice Volunteers, Maureen and Joann and Arcangels Faye.

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