Pamela R. Matenaer, 56

Pamela R. Matenaer (nee Nothem), age 56, of West Bend, died unexpectedly in an auto accident on Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2012, at Froedtert Memorial Lutheran Hospital in Wauwatosa. She was born May 9, 1956, in Port Washington, to Harold and Dorothy (nee Didier) Nothem. When she was 17 her mother died and she assumed the motherly duties for her younger siblings. Her father then married Arlene Karoses (nee Heltemes) who became Pam’s closest friend.

Pamela married Michael L. Matenaer on July 1, 1978, at St. Mary’s Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in West Bend.

Pam graduated from West Bend East High School with the class of 1974. She then earned a degree in psychology from UW-Milwaukee in 1978. Following her marriage she focused her time and energy into raising their five sons. Once her children were in school she earned her degree in early childhood education and began teaching in the West Bend School District as an early childhood special needs teacher and enjoyed tutoring at St. Frances Cabrini School.

She was a very active volunteer with many church and community organizations. She was active in the Special Needs Religious Education program and the Holiday Food Basket and Giving Tree programs.

Pam’s Catholic faith was very important to her and she was proud to share that faith with her family. She was involved in the Women of Christ Conference, devoting time in the Adoration Chapel and cooking for the priests. She lived her faith daily by attending Mass.

In addition to being a devoted wife, she cherished her children and their spouses and her grandchildren. While her children were growing she could often be found pitching to them in the back yard and cheering them from the bleachers at their games. She enjoyed walking and listening to Brewer games on the radio and liked cross country skiing, bicycling, gardening and organizing family events. She will be deeply missed by her husband of 34 years, Michael, her five sons: Matthew (Rachel) of McFarland, James (Mary Beth) of La Crosse, Paul (Meg) of Madison, Mark (fiancé Vanessa) of West Bend and Peter (special friend Elise) of West Bend; and nine grandchildren: Lucia, Lauryn, Audra, Monica, a grandchild due in May, Sophia, Augustine, Felicity and on the day Pam was born to Eternal Life her grandson Ignatius was born into this world. She is further survived by her parents, Harold and Arlene Nothem of West Bend; her siblings, Steve (Peggy) Nothem of Kiel, Wanda (Joe) Gindt of Green Bay, Gus (Leann) Karoses of Kewaskum, Guy (Robin) Nothem of Maple Grove, Minn., Laura (Steve) Nigh of Wauwatosa, Dawn (Dan) Mayer of La Crosse, Mary (Craig) Hernikl of Menomonee Falls and Sherry Weissman of Wauwatosa, her sister in-law Sherry Nothem of Sheboygan, her father-in-law Norman and the late Genevieve Matenaer of West Bend, a brother-in-law Dale (Debbie) Matenaer of West Bend, her sister-in-law Cheryl (Steve) Beistle of West Bend and aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews other relatives and many friends.

She was preceded in death by her mother, Dorothy Nothem, her motherin- law, Genevieve Matenaer, and her grandparents, Leonard and Ella Didier and Mathias and Clara Nothem.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Friday, Dec. 28, 2012, at 7 p.m. at St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church in West Bend with the Rev. Nathan Reesman presiding. Burial will be Saturday at 9:30 a.m. in St. Mary’s New Cemetery. The visitation will be Friday at the church only from 3:30-6:45 p.m. In lieu of flowers memorials to St. Francs Cabrini Parish are appreciated.

The Schmidt Funeral Home in West Bend is serving the family.

Online guestbook and condolences are available at