ESCANABA - Ann Pauline Kolbus Wise, 91, formerly of Munising and Wells, passed away Monday morning, Jan. 17, 2011, at the Christian Park Health Care Center.
She was born on May 6, 1919, at her family home in Munising to her parents, Polish immigrants Joseph and Pauline (Galus) Kolbus.
Ann worked at the Beach Inn, Munising Cafe, The Munising Bakery and the paper mill until meeting the love of her life, George W. Wise. She married George at Sacred Heart Church in Munising on Aug. 3, 1947.
Ann Pauline Kolbus Wise
Into this world they brought 11 children. Ann was a fulltime homemaker. She did find time to string pearls beautifully for their jewelry store in Escanaba, Wise Brothers Jewelry. She lost her husband, George, to a heart attack in 1968, leaving her to raise their children alone.
All the kids in the neighborhood called her "ma" and later "grandma." She was famous for her homemade donuts she made for all the neighbors and her own family. If she was making donuts everyone was there for a taste.
In her later years, she became a Senior Companion, which filled her life after the kids all grew up. She loved it and became involved throughout the community in that program. She brought much care and smiles to many area residents filling their loneliness. Ann was an active member until 2003 when she became too ill to participate any longer.
Now at home once again, you could find her sitting in her big chair in her sun room knitting things for her grand and great-grandchildren. Making dish cloths for gifts, putting puzzles together and enjoying all the foods her kids and grandkids made for her.
The past three years Ann was a resident at Christian Park Center where she was very happy.
She loved little children, babies, all animals, her family and friends, and going on rides and eating all the things she wasn't supposed to eat! Ann lived, laughed and loved. Now she is with George and they are dancing forever to their song, the Tennessee Waltz.
Ann is survived by 10 children, Ruth (Fred) Aker of Escanaba, Barb "B.J." (Larry) Seipel of Stonington, Jean Wise of Wells, Mary (Terry) Kohls of Sheboygan, Wis., Ann Kelly (Bob Henderson) of Escanaba, George Wise Jr. of Sheboygan, Wis., John (Janet) Wise of Wells, Pat "Bones" Wise of Escanaba, Mike (Denise) Wise of Gladstone and Joe Wise of Escanaba; 19 grandchildren, Bob (Patty Anderson) Aker, Crista (Mark) Proehl, Ginger Aker, James Wise, Tammy (John) Gillis, Sherry (Scott) Randall, Jennifer Thede, Tina (Jason) Mosier, Tom Wise, Tim (Ronda) Ettenhofer, Jesse Ettenhofer, Beth Wise, Lisa (Tim) Becks, Amy Seymor, Jason, Justin and Sara Kohls, Larry and Ryan Kelly; 22 great grandchildren; sisters, Stella Graves of Munising, Julia (Thermon) Stephenson of Christmas and Cecilia Walkiewicz of Chesterfield, Mich.; brothers, Joseph (Pat) Kolbus of Munising, Walter (Katherine) Kolbus of Wetmore; and many nieces and nephews.
In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by a son, Larry "Bird" Wise; sisters, Rose Poppa and Mary Blondeau; and brothers, John and Stanley.
Visitation will be on Friday, Jan. 21, beginning at 11 a.m. at the Crawford Funeral Home in Escanaba until the time of the funeral service at 2 p.m. with Rev. Eric Olson officiating. A meal will follow in the hall of St. Anthony of Padua Church in Wells.
The Crawford Funeral Homes are assisting the Wise family.