March 3, 1926 — Feb. 6, 2017
Margery Jean (Meyer) Papenfuss, 90, of Slinger, passed away Monday, Feb. , 2017, at Serenity Villa in Slinger.
Margery was born March 3, 1926, to Emil and Bessie (James) Meyer in Fond du Lac. She was the youngest of three children. Her childhood was one of poverty and struggle. Her father died when she was 2, leaving her mother to raise three children during the heart of the depression. As soon as she was old enough to help, Marge took on baby-sitting jobs to help out the family.
When Marge was 16 and a junior in high school, she spent the summer in Milwaukee with her aunt and uncle. She lied about her age to work at the Louis Allis Co. She remembered fondly how she’d never made so much money and dreamt of moving to Milwaukee after high school, as she loved the big city!
When she graduated from high school, she was accepted into a chaperoned program for young women, giving her the opportunity to live in Washington, D.C. There she lived in a dorm setting and worked at the FBI doing clerical work. After the program was completed she moved back to Fond du Lac to help her mother.
Upon her return, she worked at Wells Manufacturing as a secretary during the day and waitressed at a diner in the evenings. The diner is where she met her soon-to-be husband, Thomas Papenfuss. Tom had just been discharged from the army after having lost his leg during the war.
Tom and Marge were married, and after living in Fond du Lac, and Elkhart, Indiana, they eventually settled in West Bend, to own and operate The West Bend Dental Lab. Marge worked as the delivery girl and bookkeeper for Tom’s business throughout its operation.
While being a work-at-home mother, Marge and Tom raised three daughters.
When her oldest daughter started college, she went back into the working world. She worked for the West Bend School System, where she remained until her retirement.
After her retirement, Tom and Marge loved to travel. They especially loved to go to Las Vegas, where they went every spring and fall. After Tom’s death, Marge kept herself busy. She went to the YMCA three times a week, belonging to the "Golden-Agers" exercise group.
A few years after Tom’s death, Marge was fortunate enough to meet and fall in love with Reinie Bieri. They were inseparable. They’d go dancing and travel and always had fun together. After Reinie passed away, Marge continued to stay active, however always had a small hole in her heart, where Reinie’s love had been. Marge was an accomplished seamstress. She also loved to knit. She took up painting through the Pik Place and developed lifelong friendships and beautiful artwork. She played the organ and loved music, especially polka music. One of her favorite weekends was Labor Day, when she would go to the Concertina Jamboree in Allenton. She never missed a Germanfest in downtown West Bend and looked forward to German Night at Regner Park each summer. Marge was a longtime member of Fifth Avenue Methodist Church in West Bend.
Those people Marge leaves behind to cherish her memory are her daughters, Jean (Dale) Harvey, and Margaret (Steve Lord) Rettler; her grandchildren, Dawn (Nick) Spartz, Amanda (Rob) Hooker, Dianna (Brett) Tarczewski, Melisa (Richard) Lampi and Jessica (Jason) Albers; and great-grandchildren, Mikayla (Lane) Gander, Chloe Harvey, Kadin Harvey-Faouzi, Sophia Hooker, Caelen, Grace and Emma Spartz, Henry and Hazel Tarczewski and Isabel and Jaxson Albers. She is further survived by two great-great-grandchildren, Lorelei Gander and Elijah Harvey; a
sister-in- law, Jean Meyer; and nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. Marge is predeceased by her parents; a brother, Orville Meyer; a sister, Rhoda Feight; her husband, Tom; her daughter Susan; and Reinhold Bieri.
A funeral service will be at 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 10, at the Phillip Funeral Home Chapel of West Bend with the Rev. Clarissa Martinelli presiding. Interment will take place at Washington County Memorial Park of West Bend. Visitation will be Friday, Feb. 10, at the funeral home from 2 p.m. until time of service (4 p.m.). In lieu of flowers, memorials in Marge’s name to Fifth Avenue Methodist Church (323 S. Fifth Ave., West Bend, WI 53095) are appreciated.
The family wishes to extend their most sincere thanks to Horizon Hospice and Serenity Villa in Slinger.
The Phillip Funeral Home of West Bend is assisting the family: 262-338-2050 orwww.phillipfuneralhome.com.