Sheboygan Sun Newspaper

Evelyn A. Gundersen

Our dear wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother Evelyn A. Gundersen, age 87, of Plymouth, passed into eternal life on Thursday, February 7, 2019, surrounded by family.

Evelyn was born on June 4, 1931 to Arno and Anna (Wickesberg) Wehrmann on the family farm in the Town of Herman in Sheboygan County, Wisconsin. She was the fourth of five children. The kids were educated in Washington School, a one-room school in the Village of Ada. She graduated from Plymouth High School in 1949 and attended Sheboygan County Normal School for teachers. She began teaching in a one-room school house in Rogersville near Fond du Lac in 1951. Harmon Gundersen would walk from Plymouth to Fond du Lac to see Evelyn; sometimes breaking up the trip by stopping at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church along the way. On June 7, 1952, they were married at Immanuel United Church of Christ, also in the Town of Herman. The couple lived in Plymouth most of their married life and had three children, Karole, David, and Judy.

In 1967, while substitute teaching, Evelyn earned a bachelor’s degree at night in elementary education from Marian University in Fond du Lac. She began teaching full time to first and second graders in Elkhart Lake in 1969. She retired in 1990. She inspired hundreds of students and was a beloved teacher.

Evelyn was always busy. She and Ham traveled across the United States, and she, mostly with friends and relatives, traveled to Germany, Spain, Ireland, Russia, and Norway, to name a few countries. She played countless rounds of golf at Quit Qui Oc in Elkhart Lake. She also biked across Iowa (RAGBRAI) with her dear friend Rudie in the searing summer heat. Mom was an environmentalist before most others were: she recycled in the 70s. She knew the value of shunning overconsumption and asked the “Does it bring me joy?” question long before Marie Kondo was born. She loved the Brewers, the Badgers, and the Packers. She loved birding, gardening, bicycling, walking, cross-country skiing, kayaking, and really anything that brought her outdoors to appreciate the gifts of nature. In her younger years, she was a talented seamstress, who sewed wedding, bridesmaid, and prom dresses. She was a progressive thinker and a life-long blue Democrat in a red county. But most of all, she lifted up everyone around her. She loved her family and devoted herself to being a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She attended countless concerts, sporting events, and other school functions of her grandchildren and great grandchildren. She also found time to volunteer in her community in too many functions to list. She was a lifelong member of Salem United Church of Christ. She even went to Capitol Hill to lobby Congress on behalf of the Sierra Club. Go, Mom!

But most of all, she was the kindest, most patient, loving person any of us will ever have known. She found the good in everyone, even when the good was well hidden.

She is survived by Ham, her husband of 66 years. Children Karole (John) Scott of Cocoa, Florida, David Gundersen of Plymouth, Judy Gundersen (Peter Anderson) of Madison; grandchildren Heidi (Joe) Sulman of Boston, Mike Bruggink of Thailand, Jason Gundersen of Plymouth, Samantha (Justin) Richardson of Sheboygan Falls, Madeline (Ben Jordan) Anderson of Milwaukee, David Anderson of New York City, and Sam Anderson of San Francisco; great-grandsons, Josiah, Beckett, Reece, and Gabe.

She is also survived by her sister, Eleanor Dees, her brother and sister-in-law, Richard and Barbara Gundersen, in-law Elizabeth Anderson, and nieces and a nephew.

Her parents predeceased her, as did her siblings, Marie Miller, Fred Wehrmann, infant sister, Ruth, and her brothers-in-law, Arnold Miller and John R. Dees.

Memorial Services will be held on Saturday, February 16, 2019, at 1:00 p.m. at Salem United Church of Christ in Plymouth. Pastor James Hoppert, Pastor of the Church, will officiate.

Visitation will be held on Saturday February 16 at Salem United Church of Christ from 10:00 a.m. until time of Services.

In lieu of flowers, if you’d like to honor our mother’s memory, a simple act of kindness or forgiveness would make her smile. Should you wish to make a donation, here are organizations/ causes that meant a lot to her: Salem United Church of Christ of Plymouth,; The Sierra Club; or Maywood Environmental Park of Sheboygan, or, of course, to a charity of your choice.

The Suchon Funeral Home and Cremation Services is assisting the family. For online condolences, please visit

The family has many people to thank for the outpouring of love and kindness shown to our mom—you dear, faithful friends and family members know who you are. A special thank you to Theresa Dees, our cousin and niece, for her loving and tireless care for Ham and Evie over the past few years. Your devotion allowed Mom to stay at Salem Green as long as possible with Dad. We also would like to thank Mom’s dear friend, Susie Katsma, who was steadfast in her friendship and support. Thank you to Dr. Mary Arenberg of Plymouth Family Physicians for her compassionate care; the caregivers at Comfort Keepers—particularly Lisa and Judy. Mom stayed at home for as long as humanly possible and even a bit beyond that with your help; the staff at Anita’s Gardens in Plymouth, who were so kind and caring with our mom in the last few weeks of her life; and the staff at Sharon S. Richardson Hospice, who helped Evelyn make the transition to a place where she can soar again.

Services Rendered by: Suchon Funeral Home

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