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OBITUARY: Loretta Behnke

Loretta Behnke, age 90, of Brillion, died on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 at Brillion West Haven.

She was born on February 7, 1928 in the Town of Rantoul, daughter of the late Otto and Frieda (Jentsch) Gruett. Loretta married Milford Schultz on October 5, 1946. He preceded her in death on November 14, 1949. She later married Roland Behnke on August 23, 1952. He preceded her in death on February 10, 2001.

Home was the centerpiece of Loretta’s life, especially her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.  Throughout her life her love of home, church, family, and friends remained steadfast.  She enjoyed a great card game whether it was teaching her youngest to play, playing solitaire on the computer, or counting her change after a game with the adults (which she usually won).  Family members were all recipients of her love of needlepoint.   Every home has a quilt or two, crocheted doilies, and hand-embroidered flour sack towels for remembrance.  She loved to cook for her family and friends. The aroma of warm bread or cookies from the oven, spaghetti pizza cooking, or potato pancakes sizzling in the pan let you know you were at her home; and she made sure you never left hungry.  Her devotion and faith in the Lord was her guiding light.  Loretta was a long standing member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Brillion. She believed in family and work before play. A woman ahead of her time she was open to learning, new ideas, accepting life’s challenges and changes, and moving forward.  Her loving nature and warm smile will be missed.

Survivors include her children, Stan (Mary) Schultz of Mason City IA, Carolyn (Bud) McAtee of Brillion, Mark (Rhonda) Behnke of Brillion, Julie (David) Bubolz of Cato, Terry (Lisa) Behnke of Brillion; her grandchildren, Stanley (Sheyanne) Schultz, Tiffany (Fabian) Leiva, Jeff Behnke, Marsha (Bill) Brandes, Shawn (Melissa) Behnke, Mindy (Mason) Geiger, Nick Bubolz, Matt (Kari) Bubolz, Jake (Tracie) Bubolz, Abby Bubolz and fiancé Nathan Geiger, Craig Behnke, Shannon Behnke and fiancé Ryan Thill, and Josh McAtee; 17 great grandchildren; a brother Marvin Gruett of MO, sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Florence Gruett of Brillion, Orville Stecker of Stockbridge, Sophia Jandrey of Manitowoc,  and other relatives and friends. She was preceded in death by her husbands, a daughter Lila Mae Behnke, 3 sisters and 1 brother.

Funeral service will be held on Sunday, April 22 at 3:00 p.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church in Brillion. The Rev. Phillip Janisch and Rev. Ross Henzi will officiate. Burial will be in the Westside Cemetery in Reedsville.

Visitation will take place at the church on Sunday from 1:00 p.m. until the time of service. Online condolences may be made at


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