Charlotte E. Perry was born April 10, 1927, the daughter of George and Elsie Hennemann in Athens, WI. She passed away April 19, 2014 in Arbor Vitae, WI.
Her family farmed in Irma and moved to Chicago after the family home burned to the ground. Her brother, Homer, only four, died months after the move to Chicago. Two years later, she again experienced loss when her mother was killed during the Labor/Union War. She attended Chicago public schools and graduated high school in 1944.
While in high school and nursing school, she worked at the telephone company as a switchboard operator. She recalls working the day WWII ended, the switchboard lit up, every line busy, people laughing and hugging in the streets as she exited that day.
The love of her life, Philip Perry, came to Chicago and asked her to marry him after the war ended. They married Nov. 4, 1946.
She worked as a waitress at Skipper’s in Merrill until she and Phil went to Oregon to set up a plant for the JW Perry Company in Coos Bay. Upon completion of the project and having started a family, they returned to Merrill and bought a farm. She loved working with the animals, especially the cows. Having lost the barn to fire ignited by lightning for the second time, they gave up farming and moved into town. She was a mother to her four children, a homemaker and assistant to her husband’s many business endeavors which included snowmobiles, sod, fresh cut flowers, plants as well as bough cutting, wreaths and grave blankets making for her father-in-law’s business. In 1972, after moving to Woodruff, WI, she started a career as a nursing assistant at Lakeland Memorial Hospital and later as a greeter for Walmart.
After retiring, her husband and she traveled, spending winters in warmer states and visiting family.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Phil Perry; daughter, Alice (Perry) Ledford; a great-granddaughter, Angie Brunke; her parents; a sister, Virginia, and brothers, Homer and Donald; three sisters-in-law and three brothers-in-law.
Charlotte is survived, loved and dearly missed by her three children, Joseph (Mary Jo) Perry, Steven (Lindi) Perry of Arbor Vitae, and Lora Perry Blunk-Wagner; adored by grandchildren Dr. Andrea Lantis, New York, NY, Caitlin and Caila Perry, Arbor Vitae, Shelby Brunke, Ph.D., Seattle, WA, Jeff Blunk, Eugene, OR, and Eric Brunke, Edgerton, WI; and joyfully remembered by her great-grandchildren, Taylor, Alexander, Nicole, Jason and Adrian Brunke.
Funeral services were held in Minocqua on April 24.
Our special thanks to doctors Fossen, McGill and Crump and the staff of One Penny Place, Woodruff, WI. My special thanks to my brother Joe who tirelessly cared for our mother – Your big sister.