Lois Anne Surlak
Lois Anne Surlak

Lois Anne Surlak, born Oct. 23, 1936 in Thayer, Ill., to Oscar and Ione Johnson; youngest of three children, passed away Thursday, May 17, 2020 in New Auburn, Wis. Lois was 83 year young.

Going to Webber’s Dairy in Joliet, Ill. to get ice cream after school was one of her favorite activities. She took tap dancing and ballet lessons. She would walk to school with her two brothers and spent many hours in her maternal grandparents (James and Effie Mellish) general store. Lois graduated from a class of over 200 students in 1955 from Joliet Township High School.

Lois met Steve Surlak on February 14, 1955 on a blind date. They were married September 29, 1956. Lois and Steve had three girls, Lynne in 1960, Mary in 1963 and Stephanie in 1965.

Lois is survived by her children: Lynn and Jake Schroeder of New Auburn (granddaughter Rochelle and Eric Swanson of New Richmond, Wis. and granddaughter Vanessa and Justin Edinger of Milwaukee, Wis., Mary and DuWayne Young of Butternut, Wis. Stephanie Lee of New Auburn (grandson Cody and Brittany Lee and great granddaughter Evelyn and great grandson Camden of Flower Mound, Texas and granddaughter Jessica Lee of Barron, Wis. and grandson Michael and Carly Lee and great grandsons Oliver and Tucker of Cameron, Wis.). She loved her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren very much.

She loved to travel and took several trips with her daughter Lynn and her children. Her and Mary went to Chicago to see a Whitney Houston concert in 1999. She was an avid Minnesota Vikings fan and wore her tattoo on her arm proudly. Lois loved Elvis Presley almost as much and had a wide range of memorabilia displayed throughout her home.

After Lois was married, she worked at APSA (Ammunition Procurement Supply Agency) as a clerk typist for the federal government. She worked many jobs through the years, she retired from Phillips Plastics in Eau Claire in 2003 before that she worked at Cenex in Colfax, Tester Forage King in Ridgeland, she was a school bus driver for the school district of Colfax and she worked at Sandylee coat factory in Menomonie, Wis.

Even though Lois was confined to a wheel chair the last 18 years, she never lost her sense of humor and always had a great outlook on life. She always had a smile for a new friend or someone she knew a long time.

Her great grandkids called her Gigi and loved her very much. Lois was a kindhearted woman and gave generously to others. She always put others needs in front of her own. She is sadly missed.

We invite family and friends to join us at a “Celebration of Life” for Lois at the New Auburn Park Pavilion on Saturday, July 18, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. A light lunch will be served.