Bonny Jo Mueller
May 26, 1955 — Feb. 7, 2015
Bonny Jo Mueller, 59, died peacefully at home on February 7, 2015, after a long struggle with Huntington’s disease. She was born in Madison on May 26, 1955, the oldest daughter of Gordon and Joanne (Rhodee) Hammel. She married Thomas George Mueller at St. Sebastian’s Church in Sturtevant on June 1, 1985.
Bonny attended Oconomowoc High School. She completed her Bachelor of Arts with a double major in English and history at the University of Wisconsin- Madison, followed by graduate work in library science at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She enjoyed serving the public at the Oconomowoc Public Library for 14 years until illness forced her into early retirement. She was active in the Waukesha County Democratic Party and was the party’s candidate for state Senate in 1986.
She co-founded the Oconomowoc Chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) and was a tireless advocate for the rights of women, minorities, LGBT, and anyone who was oppressed, exploited or abused — anytime, anywhere. She was a devoted and loving wife and mother to her three sons, and a cat lover extraordinaire. She was also an omnivorous reader, avid birdwatcher, camper and lover of nature.
Bonny is survived by her husband, Tom, and three sons, Daniel Richard Mueller of Oconomowoc, Theodore Cole Mueller of New York City, and Andrew Gunther Mueller, a student at UW-Madison. She is further survived by an aunt, Mary Anne Arthur (nee Rhodee) of Fond du Lac, and an uncle, John (Pauline) Hammel of Hartland.
She is also survived by a brother-in-law, Henry Muller; cousins Carol Arthur Field and Judy Arthur Henning; along with other cousins and numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins through marriage.
Bonny was preceded in death by her parents; a sister, Mary Muller; her first husband, Richard Nelson; grandparents, Dan and Lorena Hammel and Leander and Carol Rhodee; two aunts, Lucille Hammel Wood and Florence Hammel Nufer; and uncle James Arthur.
Two memorial gatherings will be held. The first will be on Sunday, Feb. 22, from 2–4 PM at the Siena Center, 5635 Erie St., Racine. The second will be on Sunday, March 1, from 2-4 PM at the Oconomowoc Public Library, 200 South St., Oconomowoc.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations will be appreciated to the Wisconsin Chapter of the Huntington’s Disease Society of America (HDSA), 2041 N. 107th St., Wauwatosa, WI 53226 (www.hdsa.org/wi).
The family wishes to thank the following for the loving care and support they provided during Bonny’s illness: Amber Ewald, Rhonda McKenna, HDSA-Wisconsin Milwaukee Support Group, Care Wisconsin, Easter Seals LEO Program, BrightStar Care and Seasons Hospice.
Pagenkopf Funeral Home is serving the family. For more information, call 262-567-4457 or visit www.pagenkopf.com.