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Gary Fries


1941 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
Gary Fries Obituary
Fries, Gary M.

Gary M. Fries, age 73, of Wisconsin Rapids died Tuesday, July 1, 2014 with his family by his side at House of the Dove in Marshfield.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 AM Monday July 7, 2014 at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 311 14th Avenue South, Wisconsin Rapids. Rev. Martin Baur will officiate. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery with military rites by Wisconsin Rapids American Legion Post #9. Visitation will be held from

3:00 - 7:00 PM Sunday at Ritchay Funeral Home in Wisconsin Rapids and at St. Paul's Church Monday from 10:00 - 11:00 AM.

Gary was born May 6, 1941 in Antigo, Wisconsin to Lyle and Genevieve (Buetow) Fries. He married Shirley Kolbet on January 4, 1964 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 1959 Gary joined the US Navy, he was discharged from the Naval Reserves in 1965. He was employed by Domtar for 38 years, retiring as a lab technician on September 1, 2005. After his retirement from Domtar, he enjoyed working at Bulls Eye Country Club with the grounds crew.

Gary was a long time member of St. Paul's Lutheran Church where he served in visitation and jail ministry. He was a member of the Heart of Wisconsin Sportsman's Club and the Nekoosa Conservation League. As an active outdoorsman, Gary enjoyed bicycling, hunting, fishing and splitting wood. He loved traveling and having fun at the Kolbet campouts. Gary also looked forward to spending time with his grandchildren and attending their sports and special programs.

He is survived by his loving wife of 50 years, Shirley Fries; four children Michael Fries of Kaukauna, Sonia (Paul) Egbert of Sheboygan, Scott (Michelle) Fries of Chanhassen, MN and Sara (Pete) Esser of De Pere; his grandchildren Matthew and Ryan Fries, Derek, Amanda and Emma Egbert, Tyler, Brandon, Isabella and Liam Fries, Jordan, Austin and Kaitlyn Esser and Alexandria Lockert and his sister Carole Schauer of Elcho, WI. He is further survived by uncles, Bob and Bert Buetow, and many nieces and nephews.

Gary was preceded in death by his father Lyle Fries; mother Genevieve Fries Beattie; step father Richard Beattie; granddaughter Erin Fries; grandson Connor Fries; and father and mother in law Joe and Loraine Kolbet.

Gary was a great role model to others by having determination and a positive attitude during his stroke recovery. He found ways to continue to enjoy life and stay active by biking with Shirley on their tandem recumbent and deer hunting during the Wisconsin Disabled hunt. Gary has been an inspiration for all that knew him.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial will be designated in Gary's name at a later date.

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Published in Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune on July 3, 2014
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