Charlotte Paula Sarah Strehlow (Zaremba), age 111, of Merrill, Wis., was called to her heavenly home on Friday, December 6, 2019 at Bell Tower Residence in Merrill. Records indicate Charlotte was the oldest person in Wisconsin, the 22nd oldest in the United States, and the 76th oldest person in the world at the time of her death.
Isaiah 12:2 “Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD himself, is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation."
Charlotte was born on July 18, 1908 in Stanton, Nebraska, the daughter of Rev. Emil and Marie (Mayerhoff) Zaremba. Charlotte was baptized, confirmed, and married in services officiated by her father. She spent her childhood in Nebraska where her father served as pastor of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Norfolk. They moved to Norwalk, Wisconsin in 1921 when Rev. Zaremba received a call to St. James Lutheran Church. In 1931, her family then moved to Wausau, WI where her father was installed as pastor to Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church, Village of Maine.
Charlotte married William (Bill) A. Strehlow on her 27th birthday, July 18, 1935. They worked the Strehlow farm and later started the Polar Freeze Locker Service business. They had one son, Gerald. Charlotte and Bill were both active members of Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church. Charlotte was blessed with the gifts of music and art. She was a founding member of the sewing circle and ladies guild. She was also a member of the altar guild where she made altar cloths for the various church festivals and provided floral arrangements from her flower gardens. She was a member of the church choir, sang solos for many church weddings, and played violin in the church orchestra. Charlotte loved to tend her flower gardens, design and sew her own suits and blouses as well as draw and paint. She also loved to plan, decorate, and host family holiday meals which she always served in the dining room.
Charlotte is preceded in death by her parents, husband, siblings, and son. Sisters include: Angelica (Arnold) Meier of Bangor, WI, Thekla Zaremba of Wausau, and Edith (Rev O.W.) Koch of Bangor, WI. Brothers include: Gerhardt (Dorothy) Zaremba of Wausau, Victor (Sally) Zaremba of Sun City, AZ, Rev. Theodore (Irene) Zaremba of Mesa, AZ, and Theophil Zaremba who died as an infant in Norfolk, NE.
Survivors include daughter-in-law, Pauline Strehlow; three grandchildren, Geralyn (Timothy) Plautz, Dawn (Nick) Schoch, and Dan (Julie) Strehlow, all of Wausau; as well as four great-grandchildren, Noah Plautz, Rachel Plautz, Andrew Schoch, and Rebecca Schoch; step-great-grandchild, Mario Duwe; and other loving relatives and friends.
Funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, December 14, 2019 at Bell Tower Residence, 1500 O’Day Street, Merrill. Rev. Joel Willitz will officiate. A visitation will be held from 9:00 a.m. until the time of service. Burial will take place in the Town of Berlin Cemetery.
You may sign the family guestbook at www.helke.com.
The family would like to extend our gratitude to the staff at Bell Tower Residence and Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to Bell Tower Residence or Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services.
To send flowers to Charlotte's family, please visit our floral section.
Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services
520 North 32nd Avenue, Wausau WI 54401
Bell Tower Residence
1500 O'Day Street, Merrill WI 54452