Bloomer Merle J. Hanson, age 95, passed away peacefully at Hetzel Care Center in Bloomer on Monday, December 2, 2013. She was born at the home, on a Barron County farm, as one of eight children. She learned about tough times and responsibility while coming of age during the great depression. The lessons of frugality, hard work and sharing were indelibly imprinted on her very soul. Merle was smart, ambitious, an excellent cook and seamstress, loved to entertain, and was a devoted mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She learned to be independent and industrious at an early age and remained that way throughout her life. Living to 95 she survived the loss of her loving husband Mac, and many friends who preceded her death. This also meant to roll with the flow of change in social norms and her personal status from independent living, marriage, motherhood, mother-in-lawhood, being a grandmother, becoming a widow, and adjusted to assisted living and for a few weeks a nursing home. Her genuine respect for others, keen sense of right and wrong and caring concern for those near and dear to her will always be remembered. She will always be in the hearts of dear friends.
She lived in the same home in New Auburn for 55 years and was a faithful member of the Bethel Lutheran church: belonging to ladies aid, working in Sunday school and singing in the choir. Her social life was filled with friends and she belonging to a birthday club, woman’s club, enjoyed lots of coffee parties and “just” drop in social visits with desserts prepared for guests. She chose to challenge herself to passing the civil service exam, which lead her to a 24 year career at the New Auburn Post Office . She really loved her job and remembered all who worked with her. She and Mac raised their two girls, Sandra and Deborah, with a strong spiritual base and a strict encouragement to attain the best.
Merle loved to travel over the years she and Mac drove of flew to many destinations to visit family. She traveled to France in her late 70’s to visit her granddaughter and new great-granddaughter: Bernadette. Her move to Bloomer was her fervent choice and she enjoyed a decade of living in a new condo on Vine Street, there she made many new friends. She called it her “Heaven.” She especially enjoyed the sunroom, and she cooked Thanksgiving dinner there every year for all of the family, severed on a treasured dining room set. She loved all the holidays and family birthdays. Merle relished clothes and accessories, had excellent taste and rarely wanted to part with any of her wardrobe: looking forward to each season to add to the stylish collection, right into her 90’s.
She is survived by her daughters: Sandra Lee (Gerry) Lowry of Eau Claire and Deborah Ann (Harold) Bann of Chetek; sister: Betty Hanson of Hudson; brother: Wayne Matthys of Barron; grandchildren: Brooke (Benoit) Lowry-Rivet of Chalon-sur-Saone, France, Brandan Lowry of Forest Lake, Bridget (Alex) Cavalier of Hudson, Britt (Don) Vanda of Valparaiso IN, Tarra McGiffin of Barron, Morgan (Jacob) Ebner of Tony, Amber (Eric) Mickelson of Eau Claire; great-grandchildren: Bernadette, Blaise, Alexis, Lucas, Kyla, Ava, Gavin, Bailey, Mathew, and Cooper.
She is preceded in death by her beloved husband: Malcolm Eugene Hanson; parents: Jane and Matthew Matthys, siblings: Margaret Borchardt of St. Paul, Robert Matthys of Almena, Morris Matthys of Cumberland, Gladys Mickelson of Almena, and Grace Odden of Barron.
Funeral Services will be held at 11:00 AM of Friday December 6, 2013 at the Olson Funeral Home in Bloomer, with Pastor Melinda Halom officiating. There will be a visitation one hour prior to the service at the Funeral Home. Interment will take place in the Auburn Cemetery following the service.