Gladys Ida Schmidt, 95
Nov. 9, 1922 -- Dec. 20, 2017
Gladys Ida Schmidt (nee Pierron), age 95, found eternal peace on Dec.
20, 2017, following a short illness.
Gladys was born on Nov. 9, 1922 near Belgium, WI, the fourth of eight
children of Nicolas and Johanna Mayer Pierron.
Gladys graduated from High School at age 16. “That’s because I ran away
from home at age four to go to school, which was across the road from
the family farm. I wanted to be with my brother and sisters to learn. My
family always joked that I dug a hole under the school yard fence to get
After attending vocational school in Milwaukee, she joined the
Advertising department of Miller Brewing. “One day they handed me the
‘Girl in the Moon’ costume and said if it fits, you have the job.” For
five years during World War II, Gladys delighted in that role as part of
Miller floats in bond rally parades.
After the war, she married the late Bruce Frusher, father of James, Gary
and Janice. After moving to West Bend, she worked as a secretary in the
laboratory of St. Joseph’s Community Hospital. During her 23 years there
she made many life-long friends who she cherished.
She recently celebrated her 46th wedding anniversary with her beloved
husband Ralph. Ralph’s children Paul and Christine became part of her
blended family. Together Ralph and Gladys traveled to all fifty states
and thirty countries. Golf was a big source of enjoyment for both of
them. They also enjoyed gardening, which they put to good use as they
built and maintained garden beds at Ziegler Park. This was an idea they
presented to the West Bend Park Association and it became the start of
the West Bend Beautification Committee.
Ralph recently said, “She had a beautiful philosophy of life. She liked
to experience new things and was enthusiastic about everything.” Gladys
had said, “I always told people don’t wait until you retire to enjoy
life. Keep trying things and when you retire, keep doing something you
enjoy every day.”
Gladys is survived by her husband, Ralph Schmidt of West Bend, sons
James (Cheri) Frusher of De Pere, WI and Gary Frusher of Madison, step
children Paul Schmidt of Phoenix, AZ and Christine Schmidt of Port
Washington, WI. She is further survived by her brother, Francis
(Barbara) Pierron of Grafton, WI and her sister, Lavern Cornish of
Phoenix, Arizona, as well as many nieces and nephews.
Gladys was preceded in death by her first husband Bruce and her daughter
Janice and son-in-law Daniel Bertram, as well as her parents and six of
her brothers and sisters.
A Mass of Christian Burial will take place at 12:30 pm on January 6,
2018 at St. Francis Cabrini Catholic Church (1025 S 7th Ave., West Bend,
WI). Visitation will be at the church only on Saturday, January 6 from
10:30 am until time of mass (12:30 pm). In lieu of flowers, memorials
can be made to St. Francis Cabrini (1025 S 7th Ave., West Bend, WI) or
St. Joseph’s Hospital (3200 Pleasant Valley Rd., West Bend, WI 53095).
The family wishes to thank Dr. G. Michael Mosley, the staff of the ICU
unit of St. Joseph’s Community Hospital and the staff at the Kathy
Hospice for the care and comfort they offered Gladys during her final
The Phillip Funeral Home of West Bend is assisting the family,