Wilma J. Ritsema, passed on to Eternal Life on Tuesday, February 11, 2020 at the age of 89 after a long disability which began in 1996 when she suffered a major stroke following heart bypass surgery. Wilma was born in Lansing, Michigan on July 12, 1930 where she grew up on their farm and attended a small one room school. On June 20, 1958 she married Albert Ritsema in Lansing. After graduating from Lansing Sexton High School, Wilma earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Western Michigan and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Michigan, then went on to teach in the Grand Rapids, Michigan School System. After her retirement in 1960, Wilma served as a substitute teacher in Oshkosh and became the commencement coordinator for UW-Oshkosh. As a member of First Presbyterian Church in Oshkosh, Wilma served as a sunday school teacher, deacon, elder, and choir member. She also held several offices in the community which include: AAUW Treasurer, P.E.O. Treasurer, President of Mercy Medical Auxiliary, Oshkosh Symphony Board and Secretary, President of Oshkosh Choraliers, and Secretary of South Winnebago Cancer Society. Wilma will be remembered for being a hard worker, her love of traveling, and especially her beautiful smile.
Wilma is survived by her husband of 61 years, Al; children: Michael (Luanne) Ritsema and Nancy Seroogy; granddaughter, Jennifer Seroogy; cousin, Eleanor Geisenhafer; Al's loving family; and many wonderful friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, Fred and Frieda (Wykoski) Penno; grandson, James Seroogy; brother, Earl (Ethel) Penno; sister, Kathe (Burt) Wragg; and son-in-law, Jeff Seroogy.
A visitation will be from 10:00 a.m. until the time of the memorial service at 11:00 a.m., followed by a luncheon, on Saturday, February 22, 2020 in the chapel at Evergreen Retirement Community, 1130 N. Westfield St., Oshkosh, with Chaplain Steven Wood officiating. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Wilma Ritsema Volunteer Scholarship at Ascension Mercy Medical Center, Oshkosh, or to a charity of your choice.
The family extends a special thank you to the entire staff at Evergreen, especially Creekview Household 4, for their wonderful care.