OBITUARY: Marjorie “Marge” P. Gries

Marjorie “Marge” P. Gries, age 94, of Manitowoc, a longtime Brillion resident, passed away on Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at St. Mary’s Home at Felician Village, Manitowoc.



Marge was born on June 27, 1926 in Chilton, daughter of the late Leonard and Olive (La Croix) Schaefer.  She was a graduate of Chilton High School, class of 1944.  She was the Valedictorian of her class and was awarded a full scholarship to the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  Marge worked at the Chilton Canning Factory as the office manager until her move to Brillion.  There she worked at First Northern Savings and Loan.  On October 11, 1947, Marge married Wilfred “Wiff” Gries at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Chilton.  They were together for 69 years until Wiff’s passing on July 15, 2017.  She loved volunteering for many organizations in Brillion, and continued this for over 20 years at the Felician Village in Manitowoc.   Marge played the organ and directed the choir at the former St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Brillion for over 30 years.  Her talent and her love of music became a gift she gave to her husband and children.  They would attend symphonies, musicals, and other events, all with fond memories of their time together.  Marge kept her skills sharp by playing for Masses at Felician Village well into her 80’s.  Together, Marge and Wiff enjoyed fishing at their home on Bullhead Lake, big band dancing, and golfing.  She had a passion for gardening, flowers, and playing cards.  Most of all, she loved spending time with her family.


Marge is survived by her children and spouses: the late James “Jim” Gries and daughter-in-law: Sue (Joe) Gries-Zabran , Karen (James “Jim”) Nicholson of Green Bay, Kristine (Steven) Lenzner of Valders, and Thomas (Lisa) Gries of Madison; grandchildren: Benjamin (Kim) Gries, Allison (special friend Derik Dakota) Gries, Josie Zabran, Stephanie (Michael) Lenzner-Nauman, Michael (Erin) Lenzner, Katherine (special friend Jason Verheyen) Lenzner, Daniel (Chelsea) Nicholson, Andrew (Ge) Nicholson, Michael (special friend Ann Kosterman) Nicholson; 8 great-grandchildren: Haley Nicholson, Carter Lenzner, Emma Lenzner, Zachary Lenzner, Wyatt and Barrett Gries, and William and Madelyn Nicholson; other relatives, and friends.


She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband: Wiff, two sons: James and an infant son: Timothy, father-in-law and mother-in-law: Joseph and Margaret Gries, her husband’s siblings and their spouses.


Due to COVID-19, a private family service was held at Holy Family Catholic Parish in Brillion.

Online condolences may be made. 

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