Mary Ruth Plautz, age 73, of Merrill, passed away on Friday, January 26, 2018 at Ascension St. Clare’s Hospital in Weston, WI. She was born on August 20, 1944 to the late Earl and Mildred (Franz) Plautz in Wausau, WI. Mary attended and graduated from Wausau High School. She eventually met and fell in love with Jim Plautz and the two exchanged vows on May 1, 1965 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Merrill. He survives.
Mary worked as nursing assistant and home health aide for more than 30 years. First at Holy Cross Hospital where she met Jim, he was her patient, then for Lincoln County Nursing Service, and she ended her career with Ministry Home Care. Her love for God and her family were first and foremost in her life. She is remembered as a woman of strong faith. Presentation was important to Mary, in every aspect of her life. Mary would look forward to cooking meals and baking all kinds of treats (especially her peanut butter balls) for her family and friends. She was always entertaining family or friends at her home, whether it was for a holiday meal or just for a visit. Mary kept her family together, no matter what it took. She loved people and would always put others first before herself and she was passionate about helping others whenever she could. She was a loving, giving, compassionate, devoted, wife, mother, and grandmother. She loved bird watching, cardinals and hummingbirds being among her favorite. She also loved flowers and had many flower gardens that she would enjoy spending time in. Along with working in her flower gardens, Mary enjoyed camping and spending time at the “shack” with family and friends. She was a member of the Trinity Ladies Aide, the Trinity Altar Guild and the Red Hatters Club. Mary was also a longtime member at Trinity Lutheran Church in Merrill. She will be deeply missed by all her friends and family, especially her husband, Jim who was her caregiver for the last few years. During those years Mary taught him how to do laundry, clean, shop groceries, cook and even bake. The two of them were able to bake different kinds of Christmas cookies in 2017, including making those famous peanut butter balls. Mary was under the care of Ministry Home Care and her family is very grateful for the wonderful care she received from Debbie, JoAnn, and Lacey.
Mary is survived by her loving and devoted husband: Jim Plautz of Merrill, daughter: Michelle Plautz of Schofield, son: Brad (Rose) Plautz of Merrill, grandsons: Christopher (Marling) Schultz and Jonathon (Kristina Gabler) Schultz, both of Merrill, great granddaughters: Ava, Lily, and Isla, sisters: Dixie (Jerry) Karau of Green Bay, Laurie (Mark Welbes) Schmidt, Cheryl Plautz, and Debbie (Dave) Kempf all of Wausau, brothers: John (Kathy) Plautz of Rhinelander and Jeff (Brenda) Plautz of Wausau, sister-in-law (brother-in-law): Carolyn (Kenny) Graap of Merrill and many nieces and nephews. She is preceded in death by her parents: Earl and Mildred Plautz and her father and mother-in-law: Ed and Sophie Plautz.
A Memorial Service for Mary will be held on Friday, February 2, 2018 at 11am at Trinity Lutheran Church in Merrill. The Rev. Scott Gustafson will officiate. Visitation will be held on Friday, February 2, 2018 from 9am until the time of the service, also at the church.
In lieu of flowers, family requests that donations be made to the following organizations in Mary’s name: Rheumatoid Arthritis Foundation at www.helpfightra.org/Donate or the Trinity Lutheran Church Ladies Aide.
Waid Funeral Home & Cremation Service of Merrill is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be made at www.waidfuneral.com.