AnnaMarie McLean, age 92, formerly of Waupun and most recently a resident of St. Francis Home and Terrace in Fond du Lac, began her eternal life on October 1, joining her husband Marshall of 68 years who went before her in July.
AnnaMarie was born April 12, 1931 in Geisenheim (am Rhein), Germany to Johann and Philippine (Schmitt) Kretzer. She survived growing up during World War II. She attended elementary and high school, graduating in 1948. After working in German offices until 1952, AnnaMarie left to work in Paris. Upon returning to Germany in 1954, she started employment as Secretary for the U.S. Air Force in Wiesbaden.
It was there she met her husband, Marshall McLean, who was serving in the U.S. Air Force. They were married April 14, 1955 in the required Civil Ceremony at Wiesbaden and on April 17 in Marienthal, a little church near her hometown. Marshall and AnnaMarie took trips to Belgium, France, Spain, Austria, and Switzerland before leaving for the United States aboard a troop transporter. The couple settled in Fond du Lac and in 1962 moved to Waupun.
Over the years AnnaMarie had part-time jobs including Sears and J.C. Penney Co. She was Director of Religious Education at St. Joseph's Catholic Church for eight years and a Teacher Aide at Waupun Middle School for 10 years. She also taught evening classes in German at Moraine Park in Waupun and Beaver Dam.
AnnaMarie had a heart for service. For 17 years, she visited residents at the Christian Home, bringing them Communion and served on the Board of Directors for five years. Marshall and AnnaMarie volunteered at Marsh Haven Nature Center and the Salvatorian Mission Warehouse for over 30 years. They delivered Meals on Wheels for several years. In 1998 and 2000, they went on mission trips to Honduras. AnnaMarie often used her own designs to knit sweaters for her grandchildren, and later as a member of Holy Stitches, made baby items to donate, in addition to blankets for nursing home residents.
Marshall and AnnaMarie traveled to Germany to see family and also visited all 50 states. A favorite social activity was Friday night dancing at the Legion in Fox Lake. AnnaMarie rode her three-wheeled bike in the neighborhood until she was 88. She loved being "the best Omi," spending time with her grand and great-grandchildren, telling them stories, and scrapbooking to create family memories.
AnnaMarie will be deeply missed by her daughter Evelyn McLean-Cowan (Mike Cowan); son Rob McLean; grandchildren Willington (Lauren) Cowan, Theresa Cowan (Alex Portillo), Timothy (Christine) Cowan; and great-grandchildren Sophie and Jameson Cowan, Everly Portillo, and Grant Cowan. Also surviving are her sister-in-law, Jill McLean VandeBerg Cox, nephews and a niece, as well as cousins in Germany. Awaiting AnnaMarie in heaven are her beloved husband Marshall, her parents, brother Josef with his wife Ursula, daughter-in-law Patricia, and members of Marshall's family.
On Saturday, October 14 the visitation will be from 9–11 am at St. Joseph's Church in Waupun, with a Mass of Resurrection at 11 am. Gravesite service will be at St. Mary Cemetery, Springvale.
Thank you to the staff of St. Francis and St. Agnes for such loving care.
Memorials may be given to CARE, whose packages of food helped sustain AnnaMarie and her family after WWII, St. Jude Children's Hospital, or Franciscan Works.