Marilyn (Mike) Taylor (born Marilyn Jane Wiemer) died on Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Marilyn (Mike) Taylor (born Marilyn Jane Wiemer) died surrounded by family on Tuesday, November 26, 2019. She was born in Burlington, WI on March 19, 1932 to Carolyn and Raymond Wiemer. At 18, she married her high school sweetheart, Merwyn (Mert) Taylor and moved to the family farm where they raised five children. They were later blessed with 16 grandchildren and 33 great-grandchildren all of whom she loved dearly.

Marilyn loved refinishing furniture, gardening, and sewing, but most of all quilting. It was her passion. When she ran out of children, their spouses, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren to give her quilts to, she donated them to people she never met and would never know. She was thrilled to see photos of Columbian children waking up from surgery wrapped in one of her quilts.

She was a quiet woman of great patience, gentle kindness, and self-giving. We are all richer for her loving example.

Marilyn is survived by her husband, Mert, sister, Joyce Zimmerman, children, Dianne (Dick) Dunham, Sally (Steve) Watson, Donna (Scott) Allenstein, Steve (Chelli) Taylor, Frank (Lisa) Taylor, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, and nephews.

Services will be held Saturday, December 7 at Nitardy Funeral Home, Whitewater. Visitation begins at 10:00 with service at 11:00. Burial will follow at the LaGrange cemetery.

Memorials can be made to the Milwaukee Medical Mission.

Special thanks for the kindness of the emergency room staff at Mercy Hospital, Janesville.

Nitardy Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.

Jean Marie Leedham, 86, a long-time resident of Whitewater, died on Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Jean Marie Leedham, 86, a long-time resident of Whitewater, died on Tuesday, November 26, 2019 at Fairhaven Senior Services.

Jean was born on April 22, 1933 in Brooklyn, NY to Cajus Elsworth and Nina (Gist) Leedham.  She received a degree in Christian Education and Psychology from National College in Kansas City, MO.  She furthered her education at the University of Kansas with a Master’s Degree in Social Work.  Jean was a psychiatric social worker for 40 years in the Chicago area.  She retired to the Whitewater community in 2000.  Jean was a life-long Methodist and participated in many ministries at First United Methodist Church, Whitewater.  She served on the Resident Council at Fairhaven and as a board member for the League of Women Voters.  She was a prolific reader, enjoying world history, religion and psychology and biographies.  Jean was preceded in death by her parents and life-long friend Winona Campbell.

A Memorial Service will be held on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 at 10:30 in the Fairhaven Fellowship Hall at 435 W. Starin Rd., Whitewater, WI. with Rev. Susan Bresser officiating. In lieu of flowers you may wish to consider memorials to the First United Methodist Church or to the Fairhaven Foundation.  Nitardy Funeral Home, Whitewater is assisting the family.

Ismael “Mike” Aranda, 22, Whitewater passed away on November 24, 2019

Ismael “Mike” Aranda, 22, Whitewater passed away on November 24, 2019.

Mike was born on October 26, 1997 in Fort Atkinson to Martin and Maria Antonia (Villegas) Aranda.  He graduated from Whitewater High School.

Ismael “Mike” Aranda

Mike was very respectful and hardworking, and family and friends were very important to him.  He liked working on cars and worked at Basin Precision Machining, which he enjoyed a great deal.  He had plans for his future and was getting ready to buy a house.  Everyone around him loved him a lot.  He was a very good man.

Mike is survived by his parents,Martin Aranda and Maria Villegas; two sisters; Brenda and Marisol; brother-in-law, Rosember;  niece, Isabel; and two nephew, Gabriel and Leonardo. 

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, November 29, 2019 at 11:00am at St. Patrick Catholic Church, 1225 W. Main St. Whitewater, WI 53190.  A visitation will be held at the church on Friday from 9:00am until the time of the service.  Burial will be in the Calvary Cemetery in Whitewater.  

Nitardy Funeral Home is assisting the family.

Robert Howard Wright, age 100, of Whitewater, died November 12, 2019

Robert Howard Wright, age 100, died November 12, 2019 at Fairhaven in Whitewater, Wisconsin. He
was born in Chicago, IL October 12, 1919 to Howard B and Mary A (Ramsgard) Wright. He grew up in
Glen Ridge, NJ. He attended Cornell University and was also involved in Army ROTC. In 1942, after
graduation, he was enlisted in the Army as a First Lieutenant. After boot camp, he married Connie Mae
Hollister on August 18 in her parents’ home in Painted Post, NY. He was stationed in Fort Sill, OK where
he taught new recruits shooting techniques. He went to Denton TX for a short time before being
shipped to England in 1944. He spent the rest of his service time fighting in WWII in Europe. He was in
Belgium when the war ended.

After the war, he worked for the US Graphite Company while living in Syracuse NY with his wife and 2
daughters. After 4 years, he was transferred to Wisconsin, settling in Pewaukee. He eventually started
his own business as a sales representative. He retired in 1988 and so moving to a cabin on the
Millecoquins River in Naubinway, MI in the upper Peninsula.

In 1989, he met up with Marguerite (Powell) Asher whom he had known for a long time in Pewaukee.
They were married in October, 1989 and he eventually settled Royal Oak, MI where Marguerite and her
daughter, Elizabeth were living. They had a wonderful time together, wintering in Florida until
Marguerite died in 2001. He had become close to his stepdaughter, Elizabeth Asher, and they decided
to live together. They eventually moved to Whitewater, WI in 2002 as that was where Marguerite and
Elizabeth’s roots were. Many winters were spent in Naples, FL.

He was an avid golfer and didn’t mind sharing his secrets with Elizabeth and daughter, Sandy. He also
was an accomplished watercolor artist starting lessons at age 50. His works are displayed at Elizabeth’s
condo and with other family members. Bob was a gentle, kind soul who was revered by all of his
extended family and community members. He was smart and influential with those who would listen
and take his advice. His quick wit kept all laughing.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Howard B and Mary A (Ramsgard) Wright, his first wife
Connie M (Hollister) Wright, and second wife, Marguerite (Powell) Wright, his 2 sisters, Dorothy (Wright)
Hockenberger Galley of Oconomowoc and Michigan, and Barbara J (Wright) Fisher of NJ and N. Carolina.
He is survived by his daughters, Sandra L (Wright) Schaefer of Hot Springs Village, AR, Connie Jean
Wright of Tomah, WI and stepdaughter, Elizabeth M Asher of Whitewater, WI, and his two Grandsons of
Minneapolis, MN: Bradley John and Bruce Robert Berge. Elizabeth was his caregiver for many years as
his health declined. She was his social partner for 18 years and is credited, in part, for his long, enjoyable

There will be no ceremony at this time. His ashes were buried in Hillside Cemetery. There will be a
service in the spring, to include Military Honors.

The Nitardy Funeral Home, Whitewater, WI assisted the family,

Arthur “Art” Speerbrecher, 75, of Whitewater passed away on Sunday, November 10, 2019.

Arthur “Art” Speerbrecher, 75, Whitewater passed away peacefully on Sunday, November 10, 2019 at his home surrounded by his family.

Art was born on January 19, 1944 in Milwaukee, WI to Robert and Edith (Seignemartin) Speerbrecher. He graduated from Greendale High School. Art served his country in the United States Coast Guard from 1963-1967. On June 1, 1968 he married Susie Rudolph and they started their life in East Troy, WI. Art was employed with UPS and later with JC Penney as a maintenance supervisor in their distribution centers. He was a member and past president of the Tichigan and Whitewater Lions Club. Art enjoyed hunting and working with his dogs. He also liked sailing, swimming, canoeing and being outdoors. Family was very important to Art and he made time to be with them.

He is survived by his wife of 51 years Susie of Whitewater; children Tammy (Calvin) Tomomitsu, Whitewater, Mark (Tracy) Speerbrecher, Whitewater; grandchildren Nicole, Zach and CJ Tomomitsu and Taylor Speerbrecher; sisters Gretchen (David) Boyer, West Allis, WI and Edie Mae (Jon) Wells of Garnar, NC. and many nieces, nephews and other relatives. He was preceded in death by his parents and sisters Robin Roderick and Nancy Millard.

A Memorial Service with military rites will be held on Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 3:00 p.m. at First English Lutheran Church, 401 W. Main St. Whitewater, WI 53190. Friends may call at the church from 2:00 p.m. until the time of the service.

Richard William Landsee, 73, Whitewater, passed away on Wednesday November 6, 2019

RICHARD WILLIAM LANDSEE 9/8/1946 – 11/6/2019 To say Rich was the nicest guy you’ll ever meet is an understatement. He was a devoted husband, family man and friend. He loved to tease people and if you knew him for very long, he probably assigned a nick name to you in a funny and loving way.

Richard was born to Frank and Violet (Thomsen) Landsee, had two brothers- the late Frank Landsee, Jr (Maria) and Douglas (Nancy). Rich grew up on the southside of Milwaukee, attended South Division High School, married me, Roberta (Bobby, please) Minorik in 1968 and we started off on our life’s journey. He began the police academy in the fall of 1968 but with our first Christmas cards that year, he received his draft notice. He served 2 years – most of his tour was in Germany, where I joined him and we had many adventures during that time. When we returned, he finished the police academy and was a police officer for the City of Milwaukee for 30 years. He went on to finish his college degree in Social Justice at UW-Milwaukee in 1976. We have 2 children, Amy Marie, born in 1972 and Matthew Scott in 1974. We have 3 grandchildren, Bethany Lellia, Nathan Frank and Grace Elizabeth. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews.

When Richard retired in 1999, we moved to Whitewater Wisconsin, where he indulged me to have the house of my dreams – a beautiful Victorian Queen Ann style 5 bedroom painted lady. We settled into small town life pretty quickly where we have made many lasting, loving friendships. We opened an antique store in downtown Whitewater which we ran for 4 years. Love of antiques, his love of sports cards (he had quite a collection) and life has occupied us for the past 20 years. He worked for Spacesaver for a short time and then went on to work at Generac for about 14 years. He loved to sell our wares at flea markets, buy at auctions and help me tend our antique mall spaces around the area. Everywhere and everyone he met, will never forget his smile, his humor and his warmth.A Memorial Service with military rites will be held on Friday, November 15, 2019 at 11:00am at the Congregational United Church of Christ 113 S. Franklin St. Whitewater, WI 53190. Friends may call at the church on Friday from 9:30am until the time of the service.

The Nitardy Funeral Home, Whitewater, WI is assisting the family,

Jim Newmann, 67, of Trempealeau passed away Saturday, November 2

Jim (Gordon James) Newmann, 67, of Trempealeau passed away Saturday November 2, 2019 at his home. 

Celebration of Life service will be held at 11:00am on Wednesday, November 6, 2019 at Trempealeau United Methodist Church, 24255 4th St, Trempealeau, WI 54661. Pastor Mary Beth Scow will officiate. A visitation will be held at the church from 9:00am to time of service. 

In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation ( or to the Trempealeau United Methodist Church ( 

For the full obituary and online condolences, please visit

Adela C. Garcia, 23, of Fort Atkinson became an angel on Saturday, October 26, 2019.

Adela C. Garcia, 23, of Fort Atkinson became an angel on Saturday, October 26, 2019. Adela was born at Lakeland Center Hospital in Elkhorn to Manuel Garcia and Ermalinda (Herrera) Anderson. She spent her early years in East Troy and later moved to Palmyra where she graduated in 2014. She had shown an interest in attending school to receive an education degree.

She loved to help others and was always putting them first, and herself last. She enjoyed taking selfies, spending time with family and friends, and being social with anybody and everybody no matter where they went. She liked to go boating and being on the water, bonfires, going up north, going to Brewers games with family, shopping, and working at the Fuzzy Pig Haunted House.

She will be greatly missed by her parents, Manuel (Lina Quintero) Garcia, Ermalinda (Jon) Anderson; siblings, Eric (Rachel) Hernandez, Christy (Randy) Rode, Gabriella Alvarado, Arturo (Arianna) Herrera, Manuel J. Garcia IV, Michelle Anderson, Charlotte Anderson, Bianca Garcia, Diamond Garcia, Neveah Garcia, Royal Sotto; many nieces, nephews, and friends.

A memorial service will take place at 5 p.m. on Saturday, November 2, 2019 at the Nitardy Funeral Home, 550 N. Newcomb St., Whitewater, WI 53190. A visitation will take place from 1 p.m. until the time of services.

Nitardy Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.

Brent P. Alwin, age 69, passed away unexpectedly on October 24, 2019.

A heart heavy with the loss of Brent P. Alwin age 69 who passed away unexpectedly on October 24, 2019.

Our grief is lightened by the knowledge he is being welcomed home with loving, open arms by his mother Joie and father “Big Walt”, sister April and brothers Scott and Craig.  He was a loving father, skilled artisan, sensitive soul and wonderful storyteller. “Brento” was a man who did not always live his life conforming to or confined by what society ordained and expected.  He was a “free spirit” with a generous nature and a wonderful creative ability. He leaves another hole in the fabric of our family that will not be mended until we are once again reunited in that longed for place of peace and rest. “Ride On…”

He is survived by his sons; Shane Alwin of Jefferson, Jessie (Dah-ve) Alwin of Apple Valley, CA, Jacob (Rebbecca) Alwin of Milton, Lucas (Christine) Alwin of Fort Atkinson, Casey Alwin of Palmyra, daughters; Emily Alwin of Fort Atkinson, Addison Alwin of Palmyra, grandchildren; Maxwell, Samuel, Meadow, Walter, Alexander, Sapphire, Walter, Dylan, Amy, Emily, siblings; Elaine Robinson of Watertown, Jeannine Davis of Michigan, Dennis Sohns of North Carolina, Lee Sohns of North Carolina, Gabrielle Alwin of Whitewater, Penelope (Jim) Alwin of Whitewater, Pamela Fullerton of Wausau, Deb (Roy) Rockwell of Whitewater, Lanee (Nancy) Alwin of California, Jill (Matt) Simmons of Whitewater, Sean (Laura) Alwin of Fort Atkinsons, many nieces, nephews, and friends.

He is preceded in death by his parents; brothers: Captain Scott Alwin, Craig Alwin; sister: April Alwin; nephews; Tyrone Alwin and Tyrone Kleinhans.

Burial will take place on November 9, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. for close friends and family at the Cold Spring Cemetery followed by a Celebration of life at Brock’s River Walk in Fort Atkinson from 12:30-3:30 p.m.

Memorials made to the family would be greatly appreciated.

Nitardy Funeral Home is assisting the family.

Trailblazing UW-Whitewater theater professor Fannie Hicklin dies at 101

Fannie Hicklin, the fierce and beloved theater professor who became the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater’s first African American faculty member and who left a creative legacy that both transformed and transcended campus, has died at the age of 101.

She passed away Friday at her home in Madison, Wisconsin, according to her daughter, Ariel Ford. A memorial service will be held in the spring.

During her tenure at UW-Whitewater, Dr. Hicklin taught speech and theater courses, directed more than 50 productions, and earned the respect of students and colleagues alike for her passion for the arts and dedication to teaching.

“It’s difficult for any of us to imagine a world without Fannie Hicklin,” said Chancellor Emeritus Richard Telfer. “She was clearly devoted to UW-Whitewater, not just in her time on the faculty, but even in retirement. From her attendance at theater productions, to participating in scholarship fundraisers, to helping guide the College of Arts and Communication forward as a member of the Dean’s Advisory Board — she gave of herself in countless ways.”

Born in Alabama in 1918 on the campus of Talladega College, where her father taught, Hicklin grew up in the racially segregated south. She taught at public schools and universities throughout the region and eventually made her way to Wisconsin, where she earned her Ph.D. at UW-Madison.

Hicklin arrived at UW-Whitewater in 1964, the same year President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law. In a recent interview, she spoke proudly of the welcoming and supportive culture on campus.

“Not once did I feel any type of discrimination by faculty, staff or students’ parents. I never thought about being the first black professor there because I was treated like anybody else.” The hiring committee “cared a lot about the teachers, and really looked at people for their qualifications. They weren’t concerned with your race,” she said.

“There’s often a great burden placed on people who are blazing a trail,” said Eileen M. Hayes, dean of the College of Arts and Communication.

Hicklin embraced the responsibility with courage, heart and intellectual gusto — providing a diverse intellectual perspective.

“The fact that she was the first African American faculty member means a great deal to successive faculty of color,” said Hayes. “It’s a great reassurance when members of your group have gone before you so that you aren’t ‘the first.’”

Whether in the classroom or on the stage, students deeply respected Hicklin and the professional discipline she tried to instill in them.

“She was firm, but always caring,” said alumna Leslie LaMuro, who earned a B.A. in theatre. “I remember she had superb diction and wanted the same for her students. Breathing exercises and keeping the body in shape were part of our training. She encouraged us to be good listeners — to be in the moment.”

In addition to teaching speech and theatre, Hicklin served as the associate dean of faculties, director of affirmative action, and chair of the Department of Theatre/Dance. She established a summer theater program and a touring children’s theater program.

Hicklin loved UW-Whitewater and quickly would let people know it, her daughter said.

“Despite efforts of other colleges and universities to recruit her, she remained dedicated and committed to the university,” she said.

Hicklin’s service extended beyond the boundaries of the UW-Whitewater campus. She served on a number of volunteer boards, including the State Historical Society of Wisconsin Board of Curators, the Wisconsin Alliance for Arts Education, WHA Madison Public Radio, and Fairhaven Retirement Community.

In 1970, she received UW-Whitewater’s highest teaching honor — the W.P. Roseman Excellence in Teaching award. The Hicklin Studio Theatre in the Greenhill Center of the Arts was dedicated and renamed to honor Hicklin on Founders Day, April 21, 1996.

In 2016, Hicklin — clad in a purple hat and gloves — served as the grand marshal of the Homecoming parade, smiling and waving vigorously to people along Main Street. A year and a half later, she donned purple once again to ring in UW-Whitewater’s 150th anniversary at the Purple and White Gala, held at the University Center. At the event, everyone in attendance sang “Happy Birthday” to her in honor of her 100th birthday.

Her legacy also lives on through the Fannie Hicklin Theatre Education Scholarship,given to a junior or senior majoring in theatre who is well-rounded in both technical and performance areas. Memorial contributions can be made through the UW-Whitewater Foundation, Inc.

At last year’s scholarship celebration, Hicklin reflected on her love for campus.

“Whitewater is very dear to me. I am so proud to tell people about it.”

Click here for the obituary from Cress Funeral Home: