Kathleen E. Gruenewald
Shorewood - Kathy Gruenewald (Kathy, Kik, Grammy) March 19, 1939 - June 28, 2021, was born in Appleton to George and Elizabeth Teicher, and raised in Milwaukee. She attended Rufus King High School and then UW-Milwaukee, where she met her life partner, Lee Gruenewald in a well fated biology course. Together they raised two children in Madison: Jennifer Gruenewald of Shorewood and David Greenwood of Thunder Bay, ON. Kathy's loves were her wonderful family, daily nature walks where she always returned home with a collection of leaves and flowers, reading and writing poetry, listening and creating music of all kinds, and her cherished friends. In 1975, she earned her Master of Social Work at UW-Madison, first working in elder care and then for 15 years as an elementary school social worker, where she found purpose and joy working with African American children. Highlights from her career include writing and helping to produce two plays at her Madison school: one on Harriet Tubman, the other on Jackie Robinson. Kathy was always active in her church community and shared a passion for hymns, social justice, and racial equality. Kathy loved visiting the family cottage on Moen's Lake in Rhinelander each summer with her family and twice attended the Rhinelander School of the Arts with her mother, Elizabeth. She enjoyed a good fish fry and a good gin gimlet. She also lived for her visits to her children and grandchildren in Albuquerque, Washington State, and Thunder Bay. In 2004, Kathy and Lee relocated from Madison to Shorewood to live near their daughter Jennifer and granddaughter Lily. Kathy struggled with health challenges throughout her adulthood but never lost her zest for living and having a good time. For the last five years Kathy suffered from Alzheimer's and lived for the last two years in memory and nursing care (throughout the Covid pandemic). Kathy was a generous gift giver, always thinking ahead about her large extended family and wrapping gifts with love, care, and natural twine. She delighted in simple beauty and small gestures. She made an excellent lentil soup. She is deeply missed and beloved by her husband and children, her loving daughter-in-law Jill Greenwood, her grandchildren (Lily Gruenewald, Eli Greenwood, Kate Greenwood, and Ivy Greenwood), five siblings and their partners, and a large, loving extended family. The family is planning a memorial service for later in the summer.
Published by Milwaukee Journal Sentinel from Jul. 1 to Jul. 7, 2021.