Gladys Louise Bernau Stecker, 97

Gladys Louise Bernau Stecker died in her Cedarburg home on Dec. 10, 2013, with family at her side.

She was born into a farm family of 10 children near Eagle on Dec 18, 1915. She graduated as valedictorian at East Troy High School. Subsequently she earned a degree from the Wisconsin State Teachers College-Milwaukee in the teacher education program and taught in one-room schools for several years. She married Gerritt Stecker in 1941 and moved to Cedarburg a few years later, where with the help of family, they built their home and raised eight children. Gladys had a great love of reading, music, and the outdoors. She and her husband both imparted these interests to their children. She returned to teaching as a substitute and as a CCD teacher at St. Francis Borgia Catholic School in the late 60s.

She is missed by seven children including David, Ellyn (Peter Smith), Elaine Stecker-Kochanski, Jim (Teri), Mary Williams (Roger), Kathy, and Carole (Mike Pfotenhauer). One son Larry (Karen Weber Stecker) died in 2011 and son-inlaw Joseph Stecker-Kochanski died in 2012. Her husband, Gerritt, died at home in 2000.

Three sisters, Florence, Grace and Beulah; and one brother, (Delbert) survive her. Two sisters, Evelyn and Dorothy; and three brothers, Donald, Charles and Rollin, died before her, as did her parents, Emma Kuhl and Henry Bernau. She is also survived by sisters and brothers-in-law as well as many cousins. She cherished her 13 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.

Her funeral Mass will be held at St. Francis Borgia North Church on Friday, Jan 3, 2014, at 1 p.m. Visitation will start at noon. A lunch for all at the church hall will follow the Mass, with burial to follow in the church cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Cedarburg Public Library, the Ozaukee Interurban Trail, or to St. Francis Borgia School.

Mueller Funeral Home is assisting the family. For online condolences, please visit