Mary Louise (Wanbaugh) Widmar, passed away peacefully on April 5, 2020, at her Heartwood Senior Center apartment in Crosby, MN. She was 87 years old.
Mary was born in Glenwood City, WI on November 15, 1932, to Samuel and Emeline Wanbaugh. She graduated from Glenwood City H.S. in 1951. She met John Widmar, in Menomonie, WI, and they wed on May 27, 1953. In 1965 they settled in Mequon, WI where they raised 5 children. Once the kids were in school, Mary was happy to work outside of the home. Ten years of working with customers at First Wisconsin Bank in Mequon was a job she enjoyed.
Mary and John were a team. Tending to their homesteads and all types of home improvement projects kept them busy. Even though she grew up on a farm, she found herself at home near Milwaukee and appreciated all the city had to offer. When retirement moved them to John’s hometown of Crosby, MN, Mary realized she was exactly where they should be. She designed their house on the Mississippi River which they enjoyed for almost 30 years.
Mary loved to entertain, and she threw great parties. Cooking and baking were talents she shared with as many as possible. She delighted in hosting all kinds of gatherings from dinner and cocktail parties, to brunches and casual coffees. No get together was complete until dessert was served; Two of life’s great pleasures -chocolate and ice cream!
A lifelong Catholic, Mary’s faith guided her through life. She did many good works that included volunteering in Milwaukee at the House of Peace; building Habitat For Humanity homes in several cities including Milwaukee, where she was honored to work alongside President Jimmy Carter & First Lady Rosalyn Carter; a mission trip to Haiti providing dental assistance; 16 years as a hospice volunteer; and making sleeping bags for the homeless. Heeding a call to action on many social issues as well as being active in politics, she led by example and instilled to those closest to her the importance of being compassionate and engaged in society. An avid reader, Mary enjoyed being a member of book clubs. She took various continuing education classes and liked listening to many different types of music. She had fun traveling and when she and John “hit the road”, Mary navigated.
Mary was preceded in death by her parents, two sisters and two brothers. She is survived by her husband of almost 67 years, John F. Widmar, her sons, John E. (Kris), Tony L. (Suzanne), daughters, Terry L., Ann M. (Daniel Kelly), Joan F. Sutliff (Michael) and grandchildren, Holten, Samantha, Leah, and Brett.
A Celebration of Life will be announced in the near future.
Mary supported various organizations. If you would like to make a donation in her memory, some suggestions include: Oxfam, Southern Poverty Law Center and Green America.
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