November 17, 2020 – West Bend, WI – Ella Ann Schleif (nee German), 88, passed away peacefully on November 17 at Cedar Bay East surrounded by her family. She was born on March 11, 1932 in Campbellsport to George and Katherine (Ruddy) German.
Ella graduated from West Bend High School in 1950. Following high school, she graduated from Theda Clark Nursing School in Neenah as a licensed practical nurse and worked in the maternity ward at St. Joseph’s Hospital in West Bend.
On October 3, 1953, she was united in marriage to the love of her life, Philip E. Schleif at Holy Angels Church in West Bend. Together they raised four children, and also helped raise their niece Sandee Schnyder. Phil passed away on June 1, 1994.
For 25 years, Ella was employed as an aide at West Bend West High School. After she retired from the school district, she became a salesclerk at Elder Beerman/Boston Store where she worked part time for 10 more years.
Ella was a fashionable dresser who enjoyed playing bridge and sheepshead, refinishing antique furniture, baking, reading, and shopping for a good deal! She will always be remembered for her indomitable spirit and her courage to do the right thing.
She is survived by her children, Sue Gherty of Hudson, Mark (Gayl) Schleif of West Bend, Kelly (Chris) of Hortonville, and Mary Ellen (Patrick) of West Bend. She is also survived by grandchildren Courtney (Jake) Fruchter, Katie (Ryan) McCabe, Michael Gherty (fiancé Mia Dominguez), Abby Schleif, Kelsey (Brian) Miller, Nicole (Colin) Sinn, and Molly (Jake) Duame; and great-grandchildren Zeke, Levi, and Pearl Fruchter, Rowen and Brady McCabe, and Eliza Duame; sister Judy (Robert) Pomahac of Roscoe, IL, brothers- and sisters-in-law David and Mary Schleif and Neal and Tooty Schleif, special nieces Sandee Kielley and Laurie Berry, and special nephew Steve Pomahac.
Ella is further survived by nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
She is preceded in death by her loving husband, Phil, her parents, son-in-law Terry Gherty, sister Lorraine Smith and husband Robby, brother Joe Schnyder and wife Violet, sister Betty Reynolds and husband Tom, brother Jack German and wife LaRae, brothers-in-law Ross and Charles Schleif, and sister-in-law Gladys Farnham.
A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be at 2 p.m. on Friday, November 20, 2020 at Holy Angels Catholic Church (138 N. 8th Ave. West Bend, WI 53095) with Rev. Howard Haase presiding. Visitation will be Friday, November 20 at church from 12 p.m. until 1:45 p.m. Interment to follow at Washington County Memorial Cemetery.
In Lieu of flowers, memorials are appreciated to Holy Angels School Trust Fund, Cedar Community, or Historic West Bend Theater.
A special thank you to the staff at Cedar Bay East for the loving and tender care they always provided to Ella.