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Wausau area obituaries, Jan. 3, 2020

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

Nina Schmidt

Nina Schmidt, 90, of Wausau passed away at Benedictine Manor of Jan. 1, 2020. She was born in Merrill on April 19, 1929, to the late Charles and Lillian (Graap) Iwen. Nina married Donald Schmidt on May 10, 1952, he preceded her in death on April 3, 1991. Nina worked at Marathon Electric for 35 years with perfect attendance which she was proud of.

Nina Schmidt

Survivors include her daughter Cindy (Steve Ruplinger) Gunderson; grandchildren, Shannon (Seth) Lancaster, Sonya (Jose) Vargas, Lacy (Tom) Rodemeier, J.R. Gunderson; seven great grandchildren and one great great granddaughter. She is preceded in death by her parents, a daughter Sharon Schmidt, brothers; Donald, Kermit, Charles and Arnie Iwen, and a sister, Mae Woller.

A private service will be held at Restlawn Mausoleum. Condolences to the family may be expressed at www.brainardfuneral.com.

I would like to thank the caring staff at Benedictine Manor and Aspirus Hospice for the comforting care of mom.


Justin Childs

Justin Bennett Childs, 85, of Wausau entered into eternal rest on Dec. 31, 2019, at Aspirus Wausau Hospital.

Justin Childs

Justin was born in Mosinee to the late Justin Sr. and Olive (Latham) Blasidell on March 23, 1934, and spent much of his childhood growing up in Chicago. He married Jean Weimerskirch on July 11, 1959, at St. Anne’s Catholic Church, Wausau, and she preceded him in death July 18, 2009. He was a welder and after moving the family back to the Wausau area, he worked as a welding supervisor for J. I. Case until his retirement.

Justin loved to travel and over his lifetime traveled to the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Canada, Alaska, Switzerland, Germany, England, France, Spain, and Italy. He went on cruises to Saint Thomas and Saint Martin and bus trips to Branson, Saint Louis, San Antonio, Houston, Hot Springs, Nashville and Mackinac Island.

Justin served in the U.S. Army and National Guards from 1956 to 1962. The last trip he took was to Washington, D.C., on Oct. 21, 2019, with the Never Forgotten Honor Flight Mission No. 38. After being on the waiting list for years, he proudly joined his fellow veterans to visit the Korean, Vietnam and Lincoln memorials, the Navy Memorial and White House, the World War II Memorial, the FDR Memorial, the Arlington National Cemetery and changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Iwo Jima, Pentagon, 9-11 Memorial, and the Air Force Memorial.

Among his favorite things was a passion for NASCAR and woodworking. Justin loved the racing sport and followed his favorite driver cheering him on during the season. In-between the races, he made solid oak tables, benches, desks, bookcases, cabinets, tissue boxes, jewelry cases, music boxes and various other items. These works of art brought joy to the entire family and his circle of friends.

Justin is survived by his daughters Patricia (Mark) Michalik, Maple Grove, Minnesota, Lynn (Mark) Little, Janesville, Wisconsin, and Kathryn (Marc) Volkman, Weston, Wisconsin; grandchildren Matthew (Casey) Michalik, Adam (Jennah) Michalik, Miranda (Chris) Laffin, Alex Little, and Keegan Little; great-grandchildren Blake Michalik, Nevaeh Laffin, Xander Laffin, Dylan Michalik, and Maguire Michalik; and sister Velma Joswick.  He is preceded in death by his granddaughter Danielle Volkman, sisters Dorothy Zander, Lillian Holt, and his parents.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 6, 2020, at St. Therese Parish, 113 W. Kort St., Rothschild, with a visitation from 9 a.m. until the time of service. Following Mass, a luncheon will be served before the 2 p.m. burial at Restlawn Memorial Park.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Never Forgotten Honor Flight.

Condolences for the family may be expressed at www.brainardfuneral.com.

Brainard Funeral Home – Everest Chapel is assisting the family.


Marilyn Christianson

Marilyn Anne Christianson of Rothschild, Wisconsin, passed away at the age of 68 during the early hours of Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2019, at Cedar Creek Manor in Kronenwetter, Wisconsin.

Marilyn Christianson

Marilyn was born April 27, 1951, in Wausau, Wisconsin, to Edmund and Anne (Maguire) Michalik. She grew up in Schofield, Wisconsin, and graduated from D.C. Everest Senior High in 1970. Marilyn attended the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point and then the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire, where she earned her degree in elementary education in 1974.

Marilyn married Wayne Christianson on Oct. 26, 1974, at St. Therese Catholic Church in Schofield, Wisconsin. Wayne and Marilyn raised two children; a son, Eric, born in 1977 and a daughter, Sarah, born in 1981.

Marilyn worked for the D.C. Everest School District as a beloved teacher from 1974 to 2008; Everest Elementary (1974 –1976), Evergreen Elementary (1976 – 2003), and D.C. Everest Middle School (2003 – 2008). Marilyn loved her career as a teacher, caring for each student’s success and experience, which created a love of learning for all her students. Because of her commitment to excellence and her passion for teaching, she was awarded Elementary Teacher of the Year by the board of education from the D.C. Everest Area School District during the 1992 – 1993 school year.

Marilyn’s priorities revolved around her faith and family. She was an active member of all the churches she attended (Saint Therese Catholic Church, Pilgrim Lutheran Church and Covenant Community Presbyterian Church), which included singing in the choir, gospel band, teaching Sunday school, and serving as an Elder at Covenant Community Presbyterian Church. She adored her husband and children, prioritizing them above anything else, ensuring the most wonderful household of love, passion and support. She loved her grandchildren in the same way. With them, she enjoyed traveling, playing the piano and cheering for the Green Bay Packers and Wisconsin Badgers.

Marilyn is survived by her husband, Wayne, Rothschild, Wisconsin; two children, Eric (Julie) Christianson, West Fargo, North Dakota and Sarah (Paul) Snitker, Richardson, Texas; grandchildren, Eleanore Anne, Benjamin Wayne, Thomas Edmund, Jackson Paul, Meredith Anne and Beau Arlyn; siblings, Morrie Michalik, Wausau, Wisconsin; Mike (Paula) Michalik, St. Paul, Minnesota; and Mark (Patty) Michalik, Maple Grove, Minnesota; brother-in-law, Gary (Diane) Christianson, Madison, Wisconsin; brother-in-law, Donnie (Ruthie) Christianson, Weston, Wisconsin; sister-in-law, Lois Christianson, Wausau, Wisconsin; brother-in-law Scott (Sarah) Christianson, Wausau, Wisconsin; brother-in-law, Brian (Clara) Christianson, Madison, Wisconsin; and many beloved nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

Marilyn was preceded in death by her parents, Edmund and Anne; brother, Eddie Michalik; her father-in-law, Raymond Christianson; her mother-in-law, Evelyn Christianson; and brothers-in-law, Mike Fraaza and Lee Christianson.

Marilyn will forever be remembered as a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, sister, aunt, cousin and friend.

A special thank you to Marilyn’s caregivers at Cedar Creek Manor who selflessly cared for her over the past seven years.

Visitation will be Friday, Jan. 3, 2020, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Covenant Community Presbyterian Church, 1806 Weston Ave., Schofield, Wisconsin. Funeral Service will be Saturday, Jan. 4, at 11 a.m. at Covenant Community Presbyterian Church with a one-hour visitation prior to the service. Rev. Jim Gates will officiate. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Covenant Community Presbyterian Youth Education.

Brainard Funeral Home – Everest Chapel is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be shared at www.brainardfuneral.com.


John Schultz

John E. Schultz, 91, Wausau, passed away on Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020, at his home.

John Schultz

John was born on Dec. 25, 1928, and was the son of the late John and Ida Schultz. He married Diann Hanke on Jan. 14, 1950. They were married 64 years until Diann passed away on June 4, 2014.

John worked as a manager at Marco Co-Op Feed mill for 40 years. He was on the Hamburg and Marathon Fire Department for 15 years. He enjoyed going out to eat with Diann and family, meeting old friends and new friends. He enjoyed church services and was very proud to be the oldest male member of St. Matthews Lutheran Church. He enjoyed his birthday on Christmas Day. He also enjoyed Brewers and Cubs games and Packers football games on TV. He worked hard and he will be missed forever. We love you, Dad. Rest in Peace.

John is survived by his children, Darlene (David) Behrens, Susan (Antonio) Gomez, Carol Seubert, Debra (Russell) Hilmershausen, his grandchildren, Brad (Sue) Behrens, Kristie Behrens, Antonio Gomez Jr., Joel Gomez, Kimberly Gomez, Craig (Jenelle) Seubert, Angela Seubert, Wendy (Matthew) Schumacher, Laura Hilmershausen, his great grandchildren, Joey Gomez, Brianna Gonzalaz, Kierra Walker, Paxton Seubert, Asher John Seubert and Lexi Schumacher.

He was preceded in death by his brothers, Walter Schultz and Martin Schultz and his sisters Leona Steinagel and Clara Stahel and his parents John and Ida Schultz.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, Jan. 11, 2020, at noon at St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church, 712 Second Ave., Marathon. The Rev. John W. Hadler will officiate. Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to noon, all at the church. There will be a lunch to follow and burial will be after lunch in the church cemetery.

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


Buddy Rhea

Buddy E. Rhea, 75, died Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020, at Saint Clare’s Hospital, Weston.

Buddy Rhea

He was born Dec. 10, 1944, in Saltville, Virginia, son of the late Charlie and Georgie (Taylor) Rhea. On June 8, 1968, he married Karen Simmons in Rock Falls, Illinois. She survives.

Buddy served his country in the United States Army and worked as an outside plant supervisor for the phone company. He enjoyed fishing, blue grass and old country music and watching sports, especially the Bears and Badgers. Buddy could fix anything from cars to electric and remodeled kitchens and bathrooms in all his children’s homes, as well as his own. He had a strong opinion that he wasn’t afraid to share and a recognizable laugh that was contagious. Above all, he loved spending time with his family and grandkids.

Survivors include his wife, Karen Rhea; children, Deb (Rick) Clark, Mike (Jen) Rhea and Melissa Berna; grandchildren, Brianna Pierce, Kelsey (Stephen) Zemke, Cole Clark, Caitlyn Rhea, Anthony Berna, Camryn Clark, Noah Rhea and Cael Clark; great-grandchildren, Xavier, Ava, Xander, Liam and Avaya; siblings, Betty Maloyd, Frances (Stuart) Robbins, Brenda Amstein, Roger Rhea, Ben (Wanda) Rhea, Oscar (Melinda) Rhea, Mike (Tammy) Rhea, Rick Rhea and Smitty (Rita) Rhea; mother-in-law, Marvel Simmons; many other relatives and friends.

Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by a granddaughter, Morgan Clark, sister, Shirley Lawrence, brothers, Ralph and Tim Rhea and father-in-law, Keith Simmons.

Funeral services will be 11 a.m. Monday, Jan. 6, 2020, at Mount Olive Lutheran Church, Weston. Rev. Lance Hoelscher will officiate. Visitation will be Monday from 9 a.m. until the time of services at the church. Burial will be 10 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, at Restlawn Memorial Park, Wausau.

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


Albert “Doc” Pfefferle

Albert ‘Doc’ Pfefferle, 76, of Birnamwood died peacefully on Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020, at his home surrounded by family and friends.

Albert “Doc” Pfefferle

Doc was born on Nov. 18, 1943, in Milwaukee. The son of the late Ray and Ruth (Sweet) Pfefferle.

On Feb. 21, 2009, Doc was united in marriage to Carolyn (Low) Wickman after a blind date brought them together on Dec. 10, 1988. It was love at first sight.

Doc entered the armed services in July of 1965 as part of the U.S. Army Airborne Division. He was decorated five times as a war hero and received a bronze star and silver wings, which he wore proudly.

He retired at the age of 64 from manufacturing where he worked as a maintenance man. Doc was known as the man who could fix anything.

Doc was an active member of the United Methodist Church in Wittenberg.

Hunting, fishing and gardening were Doc’s favorite things to do. He also spent much of his time with his cats that he loved, especially Katie and Lillie. Doc was a very giving man and spent many hours being involved with the local food pantry, Operation Christmas Child and Operation Backpack.

Doc is survived by the love of his life, Carolyn; one son Kevin (Cathy) Ebert; one stepson, Todd (friend Liz) Wickman; one stepdaughter, Tammy Froehlich; three grandchildren, Clint (fiancé Lauren) Ebert, Dillon (friend Janelle) Ebert and Jesse (friend Emily) Ebert; seven step-grandchildren, Josh Wickman, Brittany Peters, Shawn (Danielle) Fielding, Jesse (friend Vicki) Fielding, Brandon Wickman, Karina Wickman and Caleb Wickman; seven great-grandchildren; one brother, Scott Pfefferle; two sisters, Rosemarie Reiherzer and Kathy (Dave) Boss; two sisters-in-law Marlene Pfefferle and Esther Pfefferle and special niece, Becky Pfefferle.
Doc was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers, Jim Pfefferle, Raymond ’Butch’ Pfefferle and Gary Pfefferle; one sister, Sharon Zehner; one stepson, Timothy Wickman and one brother-in-law, Al Reiherzer.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020, at New Horizons Methodist Church in Wittenberg. Rev. Loretta Waegli will officiate. Military rites will be conducted by Bloecher-Johnson American Legion Post #502. Visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 3, 2020, at Schmidt & Schulta Funeral Home in Wittenberg and again on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. until the time of service at the church.

Memories and messages of support may be shared at schmidtschulta.com.

A special thank you to Kenny Jensen for driving Doc to his doctor appointments and being a good friend; Greg and Vicki Guse for being good friends and his hunting and fishing buddies; Abigail who helped Doc during his homecare; Tammy and Josh for the loving and dedicated care they provided to Doc during his battle with cancer. Thank you to Ascension at Home Hospice for the special care provided to Doc and to the family during this difficult time.


 

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