Ethel J. Ries, 83
Oct. 5, 1931 -- July 23, 2015

Ethel J. Ries, of West Bend, went home to be with the Lord on Thursday, July 23, 2015, at the age of 83. Ethel was born on Oct. 5, 1931, in Milwaukee to William and Esther (nee Erickson) Schwartz. Later the family moved to Slinger and purchased 60 acres from John Diefenbach to begin farming. She graduated from Slinger High School, class of 1949.

On July 18, 1951, she married Charles “Chuck” Ries, the love of her life. Chuck spent one and a half years in England and upon his return, Ethel and he lived in Texas until the end of his enlistment and then in Mesa, Arizona, until their return to Wisconsin in 1956. Together, Chuck and Ethel were the owners and operators of Ries’s Standard Service in Slinger for more than 30 years. Ethel was also a member of St. John’s United Church of Christ in Slinger for more than 66 years.

Ethel’s main love was her family. She enjoyed dancing and spending winters in Florida. She enjoyed traveling with Chuck in their RV for more than 50 years, covering all the mainland states, including Alaska. She especially enjoyed watching her grandchildren in their sporting events.

Ethel is survived by her daughter, Pam (Greg) Jonas, and grandchildren Bradley (Brittany), Courtney (fiancee, Christopher Campbell) and Elizabeth Jonas. She is further survived by her sister, Bev (Bob) Walter of West Bend, nieces, nephews, other relatives and dear friends.

Ethel is preceded in death by her husband, Chuck, and daughters, Sharon Olsen and Debora Ries.

A time of visitation to celebrate Ethel’s life will be from 3-6 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015 at St. John’s UCC in Slinger. Private interment of ashes will take place at Diefenbach Cemetery in Slinger. Memorials are appreciated to Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance or The Kathy Hospice, West Bend.

The Phillip Funeral Home of West Bend is assisting the family: 262-338-2050 or online at