WKEB Obituaries Blog

Joseph "Joe" T. Hiebl




AGE: 79

ADDRESS: 1141 Cedar Street, Medford; A Township of Medford resident

PLACE, DATE & TIME OF DEATH: pronounced on Saturday, January 18 at his residence in the Town of Medford

TIME & PLACE OF SERVICES: A memorial mass for Joe will be held at 11 AM on Saturday, January 25 at Holy Rosary Catholic Church, Medford

OFFICIATING: Father Michael Hayden & Father Charles Hiebl

INTERMENT: St. Thomas Catholic Cemetery, Milan, WI

VISITATION: Hemer Funeral Home, Medford from 4-7 PM on Friday, January 24 with a Catholic rosary service being held at 7 PM; visitation also at church from 10 AM until the time of services at 11 AM on Saturday, January 25

DATE & PLACE OF BIRTH: March 26, 1940 at home in the Township of Johnson, Marathon County

EDUCATION: Corinth Elementary School, Town of Johnson and was a 1958 graduate of Athens High School

MARRIAGE: August 1, 1964 at St. Thomas Catholic Church, Milan to Marge Kuenne and they were later divorced. Joe was again later married and later divorced a couple of times

PRINCIPAL EVENTS IN LIFE: After his education, he hauled milk cans, worked road construction, drove truck for E. J. Peters, and worked as a custodian at both the Stetsonville & Medford schools until his retirement. In retirement, he did volunteer work at Aspirus Medford delivering medication. He was a blood donor for many years & was a past Chairman of the Township of Medford. He enjoyed volunteer grilling, dabbling as a chef, making sauerkraut & horseradish, gardening, hunting, meat cutting, snow plowing and tending bar.

MEMBER OF: Holy Rosary Catholic Church, Medford and served on its cemetery committee

SURVIVING CHILDREN: Daughters – Christine (Andy) Slote of Plano, Texas and Carla (Dave “Scoob”) Brost of Medford

# OF LIVING GRANDCHILDREN: 3 – Emma Brost, Claire & Cameron Slote

SURVIVING BROTHERS/SISTERS: Sisters – Delores Hackel of Edger, Agnes (Glen) Paul of Dorchester & Mary (Leuder Finken) Hiebl of New Berlin, WI
Brothers – Anthony (Marlene) Hiebl of Wausau, Father Charles Hiebl of Colby, James (Elaine) Hiebl of Colby
Sister-in-law: Illa Hiebl of Athens
Further survived by several nieces/nephews, other relatives and friends


DECEASED FATHER: George John Hiebl, Jr.


DECEASED MOTHER: Anna Helen (Krupka) Hiebl

OTHER INFORMATION: In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be given to Holy Rosary Catholic Church, Medford

James R. Koch


James R. Koch, 86, of Westboro, passed away on Tuesday, January 14, 2020 at Rib Lake Health Services.

James was born on August 1, 1933 in Unity to Milton and Beatrice (Safemaster) Koch. He served in the Navy from 1951 – 1954. After his service he married Bernice Leischer on March 23, 1957 at the First Lutheran Church in Westboro.

James worked road construction for 10 years. He then went on to work for Tombstone pizza for 25 years until his retirement. In his retirement he enjoyed fishing, camping, hunting, woodworking projects, and gardening.

James was a member of the Westboro VFW, Westboro First Lutheran Church and served on their council, and the Westboro Conservation Club.

James is survived by his wife, Bernice, children, Jim (Kim) Koch of Rib Lake, Lori (Fran) Dums of Westboro, and Jeff (Amy) Koch of Hatley; grandchildren, James and Kurt Koch, Ben Dums, and Rebecca Rohland; great-grandchildren, James and Wesley Koch and Bentley Dums. James is further survived by his siblings, Jerry (Betsy) Koch, Bonnie Fischer, Dennis (Carol) Koch, and Janice VanDuser. He is also survived by many other family and friends.

James is preceded in death by his parents, brother, Jack Koch, and great-grandson Gavin Dums

A memorial service for James will take place at 11:00 AM on Saturday, January 25, 2020 at First Lutheran Church in Westboro, with Pastor Steve Weston officiating. Burial will take place at a later date at Mt. Olive Cemetery. Visitation will take place at First Lutheran Church on Saturday, January 25, 2020 from 9:30 AM until the time of service at 11:00 AM. Military honors will be performed following the service by the Westboro VFW Post 7817.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations in James’ name may be given to either the Westboro VFW or the First Lutheran Church.

Loretta S. Kuse


Loretta S. Kuse, age 80, of Medford passed away peacefully at Aspirus Hospital, Medford, on Saturday, January 11, 2020, where she had been admitted the previous day.

A celebration of her life will be held on Saturday, January 18, at 11 a.m. at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, North Park Avenue, Medford, with Pastor Rodger Prois officiating. Visitation will be from 9 a.m. until time of service. Burial will be at Evergreen Cemetery I in Medford.

Loretta was born on July 5, 1939, in Medford, to the late Walter and Amanda (Janke) Kuse. She attended Medford Public Schools and graduated from Medford High School in 1957. Loretta received her bachelor of science degree in education from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, master of arts and doctor of philosophy degrees from the University of Iowa-Iowa City, and a master of divinity degree from Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa. She was ordained as a pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in 1987.

Loretta taught grade school in Merrill and Wausau, Wisconsin; served as a short-term mission teacher for two years at Deinzer Hill, in Papua New Guinea; worked as a demonstration teacher at the University of Iowa Elementary School; and taught mathematics and social studies methods at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa. She taught general methods classes, curriculum, storytelling, and science and social studies methods at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Loretta also worked as part-time visitation pastor at St. John American Lutheran Church, in Cedar Falls, Iowa. She also conducted services at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Medford and the Perkinstown Community Church. She wrote curriculum materials for the Lutheran Church and co-authored books on puppetry, teaching materials and thematic units with her sister. Her artwork includes church murals, sign and scene painting, wood carving, photography, and puppetry.

In retirement, she and her sister Hildegard lived on the family century farm in Medford, where they developed the Kuse Farm Museum and Nature Preserve. Here they have worked to help students and the public appreciate Taylor County history, their father’s artwork, and the way in which individuals can explore and care for the ordinary in extraordinary ways in God’s creation. See the website: http://www.kusemuseum-naturepreserve.org/main/index.html

In addition to her church and clergy activities, Loretta was a member of the Taylor County Historical Society, the Taylor County Genealogical Society, the Chequamegon Bird Club, and the Friends of Downtown. In 2017, the Taylor County Literacy Council honored Loretta and Hildegard Kuse with the first HL Kuse Award, an award established in their honor, to recognize the efforts of individuals or groups who, like the Kuses, have developed materials to preserve the rich history of Taylor County.

Loretta is survived by one sister, Hildegard; cousins Sylvia and Merlin Gerner, Verna Shallock, and Darlene July of Ozaukee County, WI; second and third cousins in the Medford area and in California, Georgia, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Minnesota, and Washington; members of the Kuse Farm and Nature Preserve Museum board and museum volunteers and many dedicated friends.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial will be set up in her name at a later date or contributions may be made to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, the Kuse Farm Museum and Nature Preserve, or a charity of your choice. Hemer Funeral Service of Medford and Rib Lake is serving the family. For online condolences, please visit hemerfuneralservice.com.

Dick Czerniak
Steve Eisch
Dave Hraby
Clem Johnson
Al Leonard
Gary Neustadter

Jerome "Jerry" "Red" F. Kleutsch

  Jerome Francis Kleutsch, “Jerry” “Red”, age 74 of the Town of Chelsea passed away unexpectedly on Friday, January 10, 2020 at Aspirus Medford Hospital.

  Jerry was born in Medford on Friday, October 12, 1945, to Alban P. and Louise M. (Gasek) Kleutsch. The family lived in the Town of Molitor where Jerry attended Pine Tree Elementary School. He was a 1963 graduate of Medford High School. After graduation Jerry was employed in a factory in Burlington, Wisconsin until enlisting in the United States Air Force in October of 1965.   He proudly served his country until 1969. Jerry came back to Wisconsin settling in Eau Claire where he was employed with the Presto Company.

  Jerome met his future wife, Kathleen Mayer at the old Tombstone Tap. The couple dated for a few years and then were married at the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Catholic Church in Chelsea on June 23, 1973. The couple lived in Medford and then in 1975 moved to Chelsea where they have lived ever since.

  Jerry was employed at Weathershield, Maple Island and at Hurd Manufacturing.

  He was a member of Holy Rosary Parish, Lehmann-Clendenning American Legion Post #0274, Rib Lake, N.R.A. Chelsea Conservation Club and the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners Local #1025. Jerry was a past member of the Medford Softball League, the thirty-five and over softball league and a couple’s softball league and bowling league.

  Jerry loved the outdoors and enjoyed fishing for musky and sturgeon, turkey hunting, bow and rifle deer hunting, and bear hunting. He also enjoyed spending time at his dad’s cabin and his brother Doug’s home in Winter, Wisconsin and at his sister and brother-in-law’s cabin on Perch Lake.

  His family will always remember him saying “Bonejarly”!

  He will be dearly missed by his wife; Kathy, three brothers and four sisters; Douglas (Teresa) Kleutsch of Winter, Wisconsin, Pat (Ron) Kasparec of Las Vegas, Nevada, Mercedes (Jerry) Gerber of Rice Lake, Wisconsin, Daniel (Lynn) Kleutsch of Kenosha, Wisconsin, Cris Siewerth of Las Vegas, Nevada, Andrea (Mike) Mongeau of Eagles Nest, New Mexico, Tony (Betty) Kleutsch of Brule, Wisconsin and his father-in-law; Charles Mayer of Chelsea. Also surviving are twenty-four nieces and nephews and other relatives and friends.

  Jerry is preceded in death by his parents; Alban and Louise Kleutsch, one brother; Bruce Kleutsch, brother-in-law; Roger Siewerth and his mother-in-law; Ann Mayer.

  The visitation for Jerry will be held on Saturday, January 18, 2020 from 9:00 a.m. until the 11:00 a.m. Memorial Mass at Holy Rosary Parish, located at 215 S. Washington Avenue, Medford. Fr. Patrick McConnell will be officiating.

  Military honors will be conducted by the Lehmann-Clendenning American Legion Post # 0274 and two representatives from the United States Air Force.

  Inurnment will take place at a later date at the Chelsea Community Cemetery.

  In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in honor of Jerry may be given to the family.

Charles "Charlie" R. Johnson

  Charles "Charlie" R. Johnson, 79, passed away peacefully on Monday, January 6th at his home under the care of Hope Hospice.

  Charlie was born on February 2nd, 1940 in Medford, Wisconsin.  He was the son of Carl (Arthur) and Charlotte Johnson.  He attended Medford Area Schools and graduated from Medford Senior High School in 1958.  Charlie worked for the Melvin Companies for a brief time prior to joining the U.S. Navy, where he served for 4 years.  After the service, he worked at Northwest Airlines in Chicago and later transferred to Minneapolis.  He married the love of his life, Darlene Bolz, in 1966.  In 1967, Charlie and Darlene moved back to the Medford area.  Charlie resumed his employment with the Melvin Companies.  He remained employed with Melvin's until the time of his death, 53 years.  Charlie always boasted on how well the company treated him, just like family.

  Charlie enjoyed hunting, fishing and golfing, especially his Thursday afternoon golf outings with his golf companions, Harry Forsch and Dane Bolz, with a stop over at the VFW after.  He always had a smile on his face and a positive attitude.  He also enjoyed his trip with the Honor Flight this past April.

  Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Darlene, his son James (Lisa) Johnson, daughter Jennifer (Jason) Hess, grandsons Dylan & Devyn Thomas, granddaughters Jessica &  Jaxsyn Johnson, sisters Elaine Paulson & Marilyn (Richard) Miller, and many nieces & nephews, special mention for his "second" son Shawn Mattke all of Medford.

  He was preceeds in death by his parents, step father Carl Biehlke and brothers-in-law Conrad Bolz and Bill Paulson.

  Charlie's family is requesting any memorial contributions be made to the family and will be used at a later date.  Hope Hospice and Cremation Society of Wisconsin assisted the family with arrangements.

  A Celebration of Life for Charlie Johnson will take place on May 30th, 2020 at his home.  Please come and share Charlie's stories.


Raymond "Ray" A. Brandner




AGE: 93

ADDRESS: Malibu Dr., Medford

PLACE, DATE & TIME OF DEATH: Friday, January 3 at Aspirus Medford Hospital, emergency room, with his sister and niece by his side

TIME & PLACE OF SERVICES: A funeral mass will be held at 1:00 PM on Saturday, January 11 at OLPH Catholic Church, Whittlesey with military rites performed by the Medford Area Military Honors Team

OFFICIATING: Father Patrick McConnell

INTERMENT: Interment of his cremated remains will take place at OLPH Catholic Cemetery, Whittlesey

VISITATION: OLPH Catholic Church, Whittlesey from 12 noon until the time of services at 1 PM on Saturday, January 11

DATE & PLACE OF BIRTH: May 14, 1926 in the Township of Chelsea

EDUCATION: Whittlesey Grade School, Town of Chelsea and attended Westboro High School

MARRIAGE: Never Married

PRINCIPAL EVENTS IN LIFE: After his education he worked as a merchant seaman. He was drafted into the US Army and was a veteran of the Korean War. After the war, he again worked as a merchant seaman for 37 + years until retirement. In retirement he resided in Milwaukee until moving to Medford in 2002. He enjoyed fast old cars.

MEMBER OF: OLPH Catholic Church, Whittlesey

SURVIVING BROTHERS/SISTERS: Sister – Rosemary (Bob) Werner of Medford
Brother – Rock Brandner of Richfield, WI
Further survived by several nieces and nephews

BROTHERS/SISTERS DECEASED: Carl Jr., John, Herb, Roman & Ralph Brandner, Catherine Lamberty, Thecla Oestreich, Anne Packenham, Ida Scott

DECEASED FATHER: Carl Brandner, Sr.


DECEASED MOTHER: Kunigunda (Linsner) Brandner

OTHER INFORMATION: In lieu of flowers, the family requests any memorial contributions be given to OLPH Catholic Church, Whittlesey in Raymond’s name
-For online condolences, please visit hemerfuneralservice.com

Delmar O. Toltzman




AGE: 94

ADDRESS: 600 E. Elm Street, Abbotsford, WI 54405; A Former Spencer area resident

PLACE, DATE & TIME OF DEATH: 11:15 AM on Saturday, January 4 at Abbotsford Health Care where he had resided for the past 7 ½ years.

TIME & PLACE OF SERVICES: 11:00 AM on Wednesday, January 8 at Immanuel Ev. Lutheran Church, Medford

OFFICIATING: Rev. James Krueger

INTERMENT: Trinity Lutheran Church Cemetery, Spencer, Town of Brighton, Marathon County

VISITATION: Immanuel Ev. Lutheran Church, Medford from 10 AM until the time of services at 11 AM on Wednesday, January 8

DATE & PLACE OF BIRTH: November 17, 1925 at home in the Town of Unity, Clark County

EDUCATION: Little Brooks Country School, Town of Unity & was a graduate of Spencer High School

MARRIAGE: June 10, 1950 at Trinity Lutheran Church, Spencer to Irene Mary Foth and she preceded him in death March 5, 2013

PRINCIPAL EVENTS IN LIFE: Farmed for 80 years on the home farm in the town of Unity, Clark County starting when he was 7 years old. He was the 3rd generation of Toltzmans to farm there. He was a loving family man, and enjoyed the simple things in life. He really loved being on the farm and the animals. He served on the Farmers Co-op, Spencer board as secretary, was a past elder at Trinity Lutheran Church, Spencer and past trustee at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Spencer and served on the Spencer Fire Department as a young man. He also enjoyed spending time with family, friends and his grandchildren.

MEMBER OF: Immanuel Ev. Lutheran Church, Medford, WI

SURVIVING CHILDREN: Cheryl (Gene) Knoll of Medford, Carla (Don) Dommer, David (Jean) Toltzman, Duane & Dean Toltzman all of Spencer

# OF LIVING GRANDCHILDREN: 7 – Melissa (Ryan) Pilgrim, Jonathan (Molly) Knoll & Christopher (Amy) Knoll all of Medford; Stacy (Jeff) Diedrich of Marathon, Nicholas (Kayann) Dommer, of Abbotsford, Joshua & Sierra Toltzman all of Spencer
GR-GRANDCHILDREN: 10 – Madisyn, Aliyah & Treyton Pilgrim, Medford, Carleigh and Vanessa Diedrich of Marathon, Hank & Vera Knoll of Medford, Lidia Toltzman of Spencer, Brady and Kinsley Kalepp of Abbotsford

SURVIVING BROTHERS/SISTERS: Brother – Ronald (Doris) Toltzman of Henderson, Nevada

BROTHERS/SISTERS DECEASED: Brothers - Eldred Toltzman & Raymond Toltzman

DECEASED FATHER: Herman Albert Toltzman


DECEASED MOTHER: Elsie (Rohloff) Toltzman

PALLBEARERS: Jonathan & Christopher Knoll, Nicholas Dommer, Joshua Toltzman, Ryan Pilgrim & Jeff Diedrich

OTHER INFORMATION: In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Delmer’s name may be made to Immanuel Ev. Lutheran Church, Medford or The Lutheran Hour Ministries
-For online condolences, please visit hemerfuneralservice.com




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