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OBITUARY: Wilfred “Wiff” G. Gries

Wilfred “Wiff” G. Gries, age 95, of Manitowoc, a longtime resident of Brillion, passed away on Saturday, July 15, 2017 at St. Mary’s Home at Felician Village in Manitowoc.


Wiff was born on December 8, 1921 in Sherwood, son of the late Joseph and Margaret (Brost) Gries.  He served our country in the United States Navy for two years in the Pacific Theater during WWII.  On October 11, 1947, he married Marjorie Schaefer at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Chilton.  Wiff worked 40 years at Wisconsin Public Service Corp, starting off as a lineman before becoming the Brillion area service representative, and ending his career in Chilton as an overall repairman.  He was very good at fixing almost anything.  Wiff also enjoyed volunteering.  Whether it was serving 25 years with the Brillion Fire Department, being a member of the Brillion Lions Club and the Holy Name Society of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Brillion, working with the Brillion Chamber of Commerce and as a St. Vincent DePaul Society of Brillion member, starting the Bullhead Lake Association, doing maintenance or appliance repairs, helping with the Boy Scouts, or working with Marge in the coffee Shop at St. Mary’s Home in Manitowoc, he was always there ready to help.

Wiff is survived by his loving wife of 69 years, Marjorie of Manitowoc; their children and spouses: Karen (James) Nicholson of Green Bay, Kristine (Steven) Lenzner of Valders, and Thomas (Lisa) Gries of Madison; one daughter-in-law: Sue (Joe) Gries-Zabran of Chicago; grandchildren: Stephanie (fiance’ Michael Nauman) Lenzner, Michael (Erin) Lenzner, Katherine (special friend Jason Verheyen) Lenzner, Daniel (Chelsea) Nicholson, Andrew (Ge) Nicholson, Michael (special friend Ann Kosterman) Nicholson, Ben (Kim) Gries, Allison (special friend Derik Dakota) Gries, and Josie Zabran; 5 great-grandchildren: Haley, Carter, Emma, Zachary, and Wyatt, and two more babies on the way; other relatives, and friends.

He is preceded in death by his parents, son: James, an infant son: Timothy, his father-in-law and mother-in-law: Leonard and Olive Schaefer, five brothers, one sister, and other in-laws: Alvin (Marcella) Giese, Edwin (Helen) Gries, Norbert (Salena) Gries, Ralph (Delia) Gries and second wife: Evelyn Gries, Madeline (Aelred) Schumacher, and Joseph Gries.

Funeral Mass will take place at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 19, 2017 at Holy Family Catholic Church in Brillion.  Officiating at the Mass of Christian Burial will be Rev. Timothy Brandt and Rev. Gene Gries.  Burial will take place in Holy Family Catholic Cemetery in Brillion.

Friends may call on Wednesday morning at the church from 10:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.

Online condolences may be made.

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