Our dear mother has found eternal rest in the Lord.
Lorraine E. Olbrantz left us on Wednesday, the 23rd of June, 2021 to join our father, Clement John Olbrantz, in the heavenly home he has been preparing for her since his death in 2008. Mom spent the last thirteen years grieving and missing “her Whitey.” We are certain she is now happier than she has been in a long time.
We, her children, Suzanne (Ray) Chrisler, Janis Cleveland, Roseanne (ALLEN) Olsen, Louise Olbrantz, Clara (Charles) Rainville, Catherine (Mike) Baumgartner, and Jill (Larry) Muelver attempted for years to keep her at home in the former Wausau Junction where she was born and lived nearly her entire life. At home she could watch the wildlife, feed the birds, putts in her flower garden and read her journals. She kept journals nearly her entire life. After our dad’s death, she spent long hours reading those journals and searching for his name. Her grief faded just a bit when she found an entry regarding him. Her journals brought back many memories and prompted many conversations about her life.
Lorraine was the first child born to Archie and Martha Foster. She was raised in what was locally known as Wausau Junction with her sister, Ruth (Jack) Lewis, and her brothers, Gordon and Keane Foster, all of whom are now deceased. Her half-sister, Marlene (Terry) Fleming, joined the family after Lorraine’s marriage. She survives and resides in Florida.
From her journals, we learned of her years in Milwaukee after her graduation from Wausau East. How she worked in a laundry until World War II. How she took religious instruction and converted to the Catholic faith. The many train rides back and forth from Milwaukee to Wausau. It was while in Milwaukee that a neighbor boy from home, Clem Olbrantz, showed up on her doorstep beginning a long- distance courtship until their marriage on October 11, 1944.
Late in life Lorraine endured the death of her last child, another daughter, Geri Ann. It was only with the birth of her first grandchild that she had another chance to hold a baby in her arms. Her journals recounted the night the first grandchild was born, a grandson, Lawrence Allen Cleveland and the births of each of the following twelve – Anissa Cleveland, Jacqueline Cleveland, Paul Cleveland, Kathryn (Mike) Zielski, Frank Koshere, Lauren Koshere, Brock (Jessica) Rainville, Grant (Carrie) Rainville, Molly (Shawn) Ziebell, Brian Baumgartner, Stephanie (Dillon) Lang, and Vincent Muelver. She always made time to babysit and prepare treats for her grandchildren, her fourteen great-grandchildren, and if able, her five great-great-grandchildren. She would have enjoyed holding her latest great-great-grandson.
Through the years, Lorraine sewed most of her young daughters’ wardrobes. She was an accomplished seamstress, being asked a few times to sew formal wear and satin bridesmaids’ dresses; all on an old Singer sewing machine.
After raising her family, her journals told us about her work at the Wausau Public Library. She loved her job; grateful to have it; found friends in her co-workers. Her love of books, history and family led her to join the local Genealogy Association. She documented the headstone history of St. Michael’s Cemetery as her contribution to local genealogy research.
After her retirement from the Wausau Public Library, time was available to travel Wisconsin, to really tend to her flower garden, work crossword puzzles, help with grandchildren and watch old movies.
At 93 years old, with the deprivations of old age impacting her life, we moved mom to Wausau Manor. She missed her Wausau Junction home but seemed to enjoy the youthful spirit of the young aides and the activity around her. We hated seeing her there, but she made the best of it. We thank you mom for sharing your love of life, your dedication to faith and family and teaching us valuable life lessons along the way. Say hello to our dad and give him a hug for us.
We extend love and blessings to all who knew and loved our dear mother, Lorraine.
Private services will be held at St. Michael Catholic Church, Wausau with burial at Pine Grove Cemetery, Wausau.
Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home is in charge of services. Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com.
To send flowers to Lorraine's family, please visit our floral store.