Little Chute Historical Society

Person Page 1,573

Elroy Simon Ruiter

M, b. June 13, 1921, d. March 14, 2004


Family: Lorraine M Fiske (b. June 8, 1926, d. June 8, 1995)


  • Birth: Elroy Simon Ruiter was born on June 13, 1921 in Illinois.
  • Death: He died on March 14, 2004, at age 82, in Anaheim, Orange Co, California.

Ivo Ruiter

M, b. March 11, 1923, d. December 12, 1991



  • Birth: Ivo Ruiter was born on March 11, 1923.
  • Death: He died on December 12, 1991, at age 68, in Illinois.
  • Ordination: He was ordained in 1950 in S.V.D. Missionary Priest.

Rita Mae Ruiter

F, b. September 18, 1925, d. June 1, 1977


Family: Bernard Edward Bernier (b. December 24, 1920, d. April 9, 1988)


  • Birth: Rita Mae Ruiter was born on September 18, 1925 in Chicago, Cook Co, Illinois.
  • Marriage: She and Bernard Edward Bernier were married on June 24, 1944.
  • Death: Rita Mae Ruiter died on June 1, 1977, at age 51, in Orange County, California.

Gregory VanAsten

M, b. July 22, 1925, d. July 22, 1925



  • Birth: Gregory VanAsten was born on July 22, 1925 in Wisconsin Rapids, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: He died on July 22, 1925, at age 0, in Wisconsin Rapids, Wood Co, Wisconsin.

Lorraine VanAsten

F, b. April 26, 1921, d. June 10, 2010


Family: Harold Jagodzinski (b. November 2, 1917, d. September 17, 2000)


  • Birth: Lorraine VanAsten was born on April 26, 1921 in Little Chute, Outagamie Co, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: She and Harold Jagodzinski were married on August 21, 1940 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: Lorraine VanAsten died on June 10, 2010, at age 89, in Wisconsin Rapids, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Burial: She was buried in All Souls Cemetery, Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Note: The Portage County Gazette

    Friday, June 11, 2010

    Lorraine Jagodzinski

    Lorraine Jagodzinski, 89, formerly of Rudolph, the mother of two Portage County residents, died Thursday, June 10, 2010, at Pine Ridge Assisted Living in Wisconsin Rapids.

    Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at St. Philip Catholic Church in Rudolph, with the Revs. Timothy Welles and Chester Osowski officiating. Burial will be in All Souls Cemetery in Rudolph. Visitation will be at the church from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday and again from 9 a.m. Saturday until the services. A memorial will be established in her name at a later date. Ritchay Funeral Home in Wisconsin Rapids assisted the family with arrangements.

    Mrs. Jagodzinski was born April 26, 1921, in Little Chute, a daughter of the late Leo and Minnie (Joosten) Van Asten. Shortly after birth the family moved to Rudolph. She attended St. Philip School until the age of 13 when she started working as a switchboard operator at the Rudolph Telephone Company where her father was manager. She was married to Harold Jagodzinski on Aug. 21, 1940, in Rudolph. He died on Sept. 17, 2000. She was the organist and choir director at St. Philip Catholic Church in Rudolph for 73 years. As a young girl she played clarinet in the summer in a traveling band called the Badger State Booster Band, traveling to the east and west coasts, throughout the southern U.S. and Mexico and two summers to the World Fair in Chicago. She gave piano lessons from the early 1960s to 2007. She accompanied many students for their solo and ensemble contests. She was involved in various musical groups such as the Silver Belles and Beaus and the Rudolph Hee Haws. She was a member of the Rudolph Senior Citizens, the Catholic Daughters of America, the Wood County Homemakers, the Wisconsin Rapids Community Theater, the Alzheimer's Support Group, the Monday Afternoon Card Club and the St. Philip's PCCW.

    Survivors include four daughters, Donna (Robert) Panko, Wisconsin Rapids, Joy (Jim) Kempen, Plover, Janie (Paul) Hertel, Sheboygan, and Sandra (Pat) Arnold, Junction City; one son, David (Connie), Port Edwards; two brothers, Donn (Ginger) Van Asten, Wisconsin Rapids, and Alois (Ellie) Van Asten, Wisconsin Rapids; 13 grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren.

    She was also preceded in death by one son, James Jagodzinski; one sister, Peg Berard; and one grandson.

Aloysius VanAsten

M, b. January 30, 1923, d. August 31, 2017



  • Birth: Aloysius VanAsten was born on January 30, 1923 in Wisconsin Rapids, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: He and Eleanor Rose Honkomp were married on September 4, 1948 in Wisconsin Rapids, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: Aloysius VanAsten died on August 31, 2017, at age 94.
  • Burial: He was buried in All Souls Cemetery, Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Note: On Thursday, August 31, 2017, Al Van Asten joined the love of his life, Ellie (Honkomp), in heaven.

    The second child of Leo & Minnie Van Asten, Al was born in Wisconsin Rapids - reportedly the first successful cesarean section in Wood County - after his mother endured a 10 mile ride to the hospital in a horse drawn sleigh on January 30th, 1923.

    Al served his country proudly fighting in the Army’s 75th Infantry during World War II. He was seriously wounded in the Battle of the Bulge and received the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star.

    Al was the last surviving charter member of the American Legion Post 485 in Rudolph, as well as the last charter member of the Rudolph Volunteer Fire Department.

    Al & Ellie were married in 1948 at SS Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Wisconsin Rapids. The following year they moved to Rudolph, WI and started a family. The home Al & Ellie built across the street from St. Philip's Catholic Church is where they raised their six sons and lived for the next 60 years. They moved to Wisconsin Rapids in 2008.

    After the war, Al worked at Preway Manufacturing. He went to school in Chicago to become an electrician. He then worked for Staub Electric where he met Ellie. Later he worked at Consolidated Papers, retiring after 31 years of service.

    Al is survived by his six sons, Gene ("T"), Appleton; John (Patti), Rudolph; Robert (Char), Appleton; Jeffrey (Krista), Kimberly, WI; Kirk (Gwen), Wisconsin Rapids; and Kelly (Betty), Appleton. He is also survived by 24 grandchildren, 33 great-grandchildren, and his brother Donald Van Asten (Wisconsin Rapids).

    Al was preceded in death by his wife, Ellie, his parents, his sisters Lorraine (Harold Jagodzinski) and Peg (Larry Berard), his daughter-in-law Alice (John), and his granddaughter Laura (Kelly & Betty).

    The most important thing in Al’s life was Ellie and the family they created together. They spent many summers camping up north, singing around the campfire, water skiing, and hiking. After the boys were grown and on their own, Al took up golfing, woodworking and buying some modern conveniences like a snow blower, riding lawnmower, dishwasher, a housekeeper … J.

    Family & friends are invited to visit at Ritchay Funeral Home, 1950 12th Street South, Wisconsin Rapids, WI 54494 from 4:00 - 8:00 PM Tuesday, September 5th, and at St. Philip's Catholic Church, 6957 Grotto Ave, Rudolph, WI 54475 from 10:00 - 11:00 AM Wednesday, September 6th. At 11:00 AM Wednesday there will be a mass of Christian burial led by Father David Bruener, followed by a graveside service at All Souls Cemetery, Rudolph.

    Dad … Grandpa … Great Grandpa, we love you, and we will miss you. Thank you for all you have taught us and done for us, and for all the wonderful memories you leave with us. We look forward to the day when we are all reunited in heaven. With Love … your sons, your daughters-in-law, your grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Armella (Peggy) VanAsten

F, b. April 18, 1928, d. May 2, 2007


Family: Lawrence Berard (b. February 2, 1930, d. January 2, 1995)


  • Birth: Armella (Peggy) VanAsten was born on April 18, 1928 in Marshfield, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: She and Lawrence Berard were married on June 30, 1956 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: Armella (Peggy) VanAsten died on May 2, 2007, at age 79, in Wisconsin Rapids, Wood Co, Wisconsin.

Donald VanAsten



Leroy Anthony Abler

M, b. November 19, 1928, d. September 1, 1997



  • Birth: Leroy Anthony Abler was born on November 19, 1928 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: He died on September 1, 1997, at age 68, in Oakland, Alameda Co, California.

Merlin Abler



Family 2: Ruth Annette Bohl (b. March 27, 1945, d. September 30, 2002)

Catherine Ann Abler

F, b. March 31, 1933, d. March 21, 2015


Family 2: Floyd Arthur Billman (b. January 17, 1944, d. June 20, 2001)


  • Birth: Catherine Ann Abler was born on March 31, 1933 in Sheboygan Falls, Sheboygan Co, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: She and Floyd Arthur Billman were married on October 27, 1984.
  • Death: Catherine Ann Abler died on March 21, 2015, at age 81, in Wisconsin Rapids, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Note: Catherine Ann Billman, age 81, of Wisconsin Rapids, passed away unexpectedly on Saturday, March 21, 2015 at her residence.

    Cathy was born on March 31, 1933 to Ben Abler and Ethel (Van Asten) Abler in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin. She was baptized at Saint Mary Church, Sheboygan Falls on April 23, 1933.

    She attended Saint Phillilomena Grade School in Rudolph, and graduated from Saints Peter and Paul Grade School and Lincoln High School in Wisconsin Rapids.

    Cathy's faith in Christ was the most important part of her life, and she expressed this faith in many ways. Cathy loved to sing and was in the church choir and occasionally sang solos for church services or programs. She wrote several songs that the children's choir sang. She cared about children and showed this by teaching Sunday school and helping to lead a weekly after-school Good News Club at Mead School.

    Cathy was active in the church's ladies group and helped with their mission projects, including volunteering at the local food pantry.

    Cathy was also on the deacon board and attended weekly Bible studies. She was a very caring and giving person. Cathy was loved by friends and neighbors. She opened her heart and home to them and shared God's love with everyone she met.

    Catherine married Gerald Zimmerman on June 18, 1954, their union ended in divorce. She later married Floyd Billman on October 27, 1984.

    Catherine was preceded in death by her husband Floyd Billman, her father Ben Abler, her mother Ethel (Van Asten) Abler and one brother LeRoy Abler.

    She is survived by four children: April (Mike Delaney) Zimmerman, Scott Zimmerman, Terri Kaye and Sherri (Ian) Barry; three grandchildren: Katie, Andrew and Kristin. She is also survived by two sisters: Cyrilla Back, Vesper, WI and Joyce Hanson, Wisconsin Rapids, WI; as well as by five brothers: Merlin (Patricia) Abler, Burlington, WI, Norman (Dorothy) Abler, Nekoosa, WI, Lawrence (Lorraine) Abler, Appleton, WI, Louis Abler, Wisconsin Rapids, WI, and Ronald (Marian Allen) Abler, Santa Rosa, CA.

    A celebration of Cathy's life visitation will be held at the First Baptist Church, 910 McKinley St. Wisconsin Rapids, WI, on Saturday, March 28 at 10:00 A.M. Services will follow at the church beginning at 12:00 P.M. with Reverend Charles Bradbury officiating.

    Condolences for the family can be offered at

Cyrilla Abler



Norman Abler



Lawrence Abler



Louis Abler



Family: Carol Ann Crotteau (b. February 17, 1941, d. October 8, 2013)

Ronald Abler



Joyce Abler



Family: Michael John Hanson (b. May 19, 1944, d. December 28, 1996)

Marie Bushmaker

F, b. October 6, 1905, d. January 8, 1993


Family: Simon Albert VanAsten (b. January 30, 1903, d. October 3, 1996)


  • Birth: Marie Bushmaker was born on October 6, 1905 in Portage County, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: She and Simon Albert VanAsten were married on October 12, 1926 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: Marie Bushmaker died on January 8, 1993, at age 87.
  • Burial: She was buried in All Souls Cemetery, Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.

Gregory Cornelius VanAsten

M, b. November 27, 1927, d. December 27, 2013



  • Birth: Gregory Cornelius VanAsten was born on November 27, 1927 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: He and Janet Theresa Kempen were married on May 29, 1948 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: Gregory Cornelius VanAsten died on December 27, 2013, at age 86, in Seymour, Outagamie Co, Wisconsin.
  • Note: Gregory C. Van Asten, 86, Krakow, passed away peacefully on Friday, December 27, 2013, at Good Shepherd Nursing Home in Seymour. The son of Simon and Marie (Bushmaker) Van Asten was born on November 27, 1927. He was a 1946 graduate of Rudolph High School. On May 29, 1948, Greg was united in marriage with his high school sweetheart, Janet Kempen. At that time they both worked at Nekoosa Paper Company. In 1949 he went into business with his father; as electrical, plumbing and heating contractors they started Rudolph Electric in Rudolph. In 1956, the couple relocated to Krakow where they purchased a hardware store. Janet ran the hardware store, Van Asten's Krakow Hardware, and Greg contracted plumbing, heating, and electrical services. In the 1970's, he was a partner in the modular home manufacturing business, Wolf River Homes, in Shawano. Greg also worked for Brotski Plumbing in Green Bay. He returned to running his own contracting business, Van Asten's Contracting, in Krakow, in the early 1980's. Three of his sons joined Greg in the business. The business moved to Pulaski in 1988, where it is operated today by two of his sons.

    He had been a member of St. Casimir Parish in Krakow since 1956 where he was a choir member for many years. Greg was a Charter Member of the Pulaski Lions Club, where he was an honored recipient of both the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award and Birch-Sturm Fellowship Award.

    He was an avid outdoorsman. Greg loved spending time at their cottage on Legend Lake, which Greg and Janet along with their children built together. He looked forward to his yearly fishing trips to Bent's Camp and to the Ranch, as well as yearly hunting trips with his sons and grandsons. He shared the enjoyment of berry gardening with his daughter.

    Greg was a loving person, mentor and friend who welcomed many into his heart. Greg and Janet opened their home to three foster siblings after their oldest three children were grown. Greg had a kind heart and generous nature. His honesty, integrity, values, ingenuity, great stories and optimistic attitude were felt by all who knew him.

    Survivors include the love of his life, Janet Van Asten; four sons and one daughter: Timm (Jane) Van Asten, Pulaski; Tony (Faye) Van Asten, Suamico; Tina (Al) Wagner, Suamico; Brian (Diane) Van Asten, Pulaski; and Greg (Julie) Van Asten, Krakow; grandchildren: Nicholas (Katie), Forrest (Carolyn), and Elizabeth Van Asten; Kory (Jeanie) Van Asten; Kimberly and Chelsea Van Asten; Heather (Dustin) Kaap, Jon (Sally) Wagner, Matthew (Rebecca) Wagner, Joel Wagner, and Simon Wagner; and Megan and Benjamin Van Asten; great grandchildren: Sawyer, Morgan, Matilda, George, and Jason Van Asten; Samuel and Avery Kaap; and Kiera and Emerson Wagner.

    Gregory was preceded in death by one son, Patrick, in 2011, and one grandson, Kyle Van Asten, in 2012.

    The siblings of Greg P. would like to acknowledge and thank him, his wife Julie and children Megan (she shared her bedroom) and Benjamin (he gave up his bedroom) for the dedicated care that they gave their dad while he lived with them for seven months. As their father's medical POA, Greg P. always made sure to include his siblings in their dad's care choices and they are grateful for his dedication to their dad's medical decisions.

    The family would like to thank all the personal caregivers who cared for Greg in his home. They would also like to thank Dr. Bruce Fenster for his dedication to their dad's care through the years, as well as the entire staff of Good Shepherd Nursing Home for their compassionate care.

    Friends may call at Marnocha Funeral Home from 4:00 - 8:00 p.m. Thursday, with a closing Prayer Service at 7:30 p.m. The visitation continues at 9:30 a.m. Friday at St. Casimir Church, W146 Park St., Krakow. The Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. Friday at the church, Fr. Bob Konkol, O.F.M. presiding. Burial will take place in the spring, in the parish cemetery.

    Online condolences may be expressed at

Marvin George VanAsten

M, b. July 22, 1929, d. August 16, 1984



  • Birth: Marvin George VanAsten was born on July 22, 1929 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: He died on August 16, 1984, at age 55, in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.

Howard Anthony VanAsten

M, b. January 8, 1932, d. July 13, 2016



  • Birth: Howard Anthony VanAsten was born on January 8, 1932 in Portage County, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: He was married on May 21, 1952.
  • Death: He died on July 13, 2016, at age 84.
  • Note: VanAsten, Howard Anthony

    Howard Anthony VanAsten, 84 of Stevens Point, passed away, with his wife Lorraine & Daughter Barbara at his side on July 13, 2016.

    He was born on January 8, 1932 in Rudolph WI. Howard was the son of Simon & Marie (Bushmaker) VanAsten.

    As a child he helped with the chores on his family run Dairy Farm "VanAsten Dairy"

    Howard was 3 points shy of genius and was a Mensa Member & graduated from Rudolph High School Class of "49" in only 3 years as Salutatorian.

    He served in the Air Force during the Korean Conflict as 1st Lt. in Electronics.

    After a blind date, He married Lorraine Marie Pleet on May 21, 1952.

    They were Best Friends and Business Partners and were happily married for 64 years.

    "Van" as he was called, started a Paint Store on Main Street in 1957 which expanded into Van's Floor Covering and later he added the Alley Kat Hobby Shop. In 1972 He moved Van's Floor Covering to 817 Clark St. The building still stands alongside the River and if you look closely at the Mural you will see Howard and his Son Bruce.

    Howard loved to design & re designed a Church into a beautiful home for his Daughter Barb.

    Then retired after serving the Area for 47 years

    He served as Vice President (1year) and later President (2 years) of St. Peters School P.T.A.; was the Chairman of St. Peters Fall Festival for 15 years, And also President of St. Peters Ushers for 43 years.

    He was a member of the Elks & American Legion Post 6

    He is survived by His Wife Lorraine: 2 children, Barbara Alberts (Rod - deceased) Sidney Ne.; Bruce (Elizabeth) Stevens Point.

    Grandchildren: Brandon Alberts, North Platte NE, Kim Thorson (Jeff) W. Des Moines IA and Trevor Alberts (Kimberly) Bentonville Ar.

    Julie Sobr and Suzanne Sobr Stevens Point WI

    Great Grandchildren: Zach Thorson, Casper WY, Jayden Thorson, W. Des Moines IA.

    Alliese Sobr, Marley Sobr, Cheyanne Rose Sobr all in Stevens Point WI

    He is survived by Brother David VanAsten (Agnes) & Sister Janet Suzda both of Wisconsin Rapids. And many Nieces & Nephews.

    A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday July 21, 2016, at St. Peter Catholic Church with the Rev. Dennis Stanchik officiating. Visitation on Thursday from 9:00a.m. until time of service in the St. Faustina room at the church. Burial with full military honors will follow in the Guardian Angel Cemetery. Pisarski Funeral Homes of Stevens Point & Plover are honored to be serving the family. For online condolences please visit

    In lieu of flowers Memorial contributions may be made to Lorraine VanAsten

    Published in Stevens Point Journal on July 18, 2016.

Janet Sophia VanAsten



Family: Robert E Suzda (b. December 26, 1932, d. May 3, 1993)

David Frank VanAsten



George H Bushmaker

M, b. July 12, 1903, d. June 22, 1968


Family: Lucina Gertrude VanAsten (b. November 14, 1906, d. October 4, 1997)


  • Birth: George H Bushmaker was born on July 12, 1903 in Portage County, Wisconsin.
  • Marriage: He and Lucina Gertrude VanAsten were married on September 17, 1935 in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Death: George H Bushmaker died on June 22, 1968, at age 64, in Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.
  • Burial: He was buried in All Souls Cemetery, Rudolph, Wood Co, Wisconsin.

Mary Ann Buchmaker