Dorothy M. (Habermeyer) Sonsalla


Dorothy M. (Habermeyer) Sonsalla, 84, of West Baraboo, passed away peacefully at home, June 3, 2021, after a long battle with Parkinsons and Dementia. The family had an early celebration of their 65th wedding anniversary the day before.

She was born in Taylor Co., Wis., June 24, 1936, to parents Edward and Louise (Fountain) Habermeyer of Stetsonville. She doesn’t remember that day because she was too young. Her mother passed when she was almost three years old, so her father and siblings raised her on the family farm. She was the youngest of six children, each of them helping on the farm until they moved away. She was the last to leave the farm when she married Everest “Ev” Sonsalla, Ag Teacher, June 6, 1956, because he knew how to Polka.

The couple lived in Enterprise, AL, while Ev served in the U.S. Army. They moved to Portage in 1958, and later to Baraboo from 1962-66, and Wisconsin Dells for a few years. They settled in Baraboo in 1969.

Dorothy worked at Gebert’s Store in Medford while she was still living on the family farm. After they were married, she was a stay-at-home mom and prided herself for always being home with her children when they needed her. She always had treats on the counter when the kids came home from school. Whether it was chocolate chip cookies, carrot cake or homemade bread, it was always delicious. She took a cake decorating class and decorated delicious cakes for birthdays and other celebrations. She enjoyed sewing for her grandchildren, babysitting them, camping, biking, playing Dominos and cards with her family. She attended and volunteered for as many events as she could for her children and grandchildren — Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, 4-H, school concerts or plays, sporting events, rodeos, Otsego Days; the list goes on and on.

She held various jobs throughout her life such as teacher’s aid, working at Hardees, cleaning the offices of the Armed Forces, but her true passion was sewing beautiful drapes for McGann Furniture for 22 years. She was a very active member and long-time parishioner of St. Joseph’s Catholic Parish in Baraboo; volunteering with St. Martha’s Circle and Daughters of Isabella. She co-founded the funeral dinners of St. Martha’s Circle in 1976, and diligently served until she became ill a few years ago. She also volunteered for many years with Meals-on-Wheels, Baraboo Food Pantry and the Baraboo Elks Club Ladies Auxiliary.

Dorothy is survived by her loving and devoted husband of 65 years; her children: Daniel Sonsalla of Baraboo, Dean Sonsalla of Baraboo, Diane (Will) Foreman of Otsego, Greg (Joy) Sonsalla of Baraboo, Vicki (Dale) Harmon of Mauston, and daughter-in-law, Heather Sonsalla of Merrillan; 12 grandchildren; and seven great grandchildren. She is further survived by her sister, Marion Paul of Abbotsford/Colby; brother-in-law, Melvin Gebert of Medford; and sister-in-law, Bernice Sonsalla of Independence; along with many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents; and her son, David M. Sonsalla; along with her siblings: Bill (Phyllis) and their son Wayne, Emery (Mabel), Patricia Gebert and her daughter Donna, Ruth (Wayne) Bischel; and in-laws: Bob Paul, Bernice (Dick) Boland and their son Rick, John Sonsalla, Beatrice (Sister Jean), and Tanner, their dog, who recently led the way to Heaven for her.

A Memorial Mass will be held Friday, June 11, 2021, at 11:00 a.m., at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Baraboo with Father Jay Poster officiating. Visitation will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., at the church. Inurnment will follow at St. Joseph Cemetery. Redlin Funeral Home is assisting the family.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to St. Martha’s Circle in Baraboo or Parkinson’s Research. If you do choose to send flowers, she prefers they not be dandelions.

Special thanks to the SSM Health Hospice crew of Nurses and CNAs that assisted in keeping Dorothy home. Ev and Dorothy always wanted to care for each other at home and he succeeded.

Remember to keep your car doors locked on the Interstate.

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