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The Northwoods River News | Rhinelander, Wisconsin

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August 17, 2019

6/29/2019 7:30:00 AM
arbara L. McKenzie

Barbara L. McKenzie age 97 of Tomahawk and formerly of Rhinelander, passed away on Monday, June 24, 2019, at Riverview Health in Tomahawk. She was born March 27, 1922, in Phillips, the oldest of five children born to Anton and Esther (Marheine) Datel.

Barb was raised in Tripoli where she was confirmed at Holy Family Church in 1938 and graduated from Tripoli High School in 1940. She earned her certification as a Registered Nurse from the program at St. Joseph's Hospital in Ashland in 1944 and then served in the U.S. Army Nurses Corps with the rank of Second Lieutenant.

Barb married Archie Crawford on June 17, 1945, at the Log Church in Tripoli and they would have three children. Archie preceded her in death in 1969. On December 1, 1973, Barb married Derald McKenzie and they would make their home in Rhinelander where Barb was a nurse at St. Mary's Hospital, Friendly Village, and completed her career at Golden Age Health Care in Tomahawk. Barb resided much of her life in Rhinelander until moving to Tomahawk in September of 2018.

Barb was a faithful member of Zion Ev. Lutheran Church in Rhinelander. She assisted in the formation of the Alzheimer's Association Chapter in Rhinelander and was active with the Oneida Senior Center and Senior Olympics. She was involved in 4-H and was an award winning fair exhibitor. Among her interests, she enjoyed playing the piano, reverse glass painting, woodworking, travel, dancing, fishing, and golf. Barb was also an avid reader and Milwaukee Brewers' fan. She especially loved time spent with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren as well as much time spent at the Somo Lake cottage she built with her family 70 years ago.

Barb is survived by her children, Patti Brunette of Athelstane, Wis., Vicki (Jack) Weigman of Tomahawk, and Scott (Judy) Crawford of Minocqua; eight grandchildren and their families, Barbara Voelker, Michelle Finder, Kelly Jean Blohm, Karmen VanDenHeuvel, Gini L. Hendrickson, Kristin Vargas Crawford, Daniel Crawford, and David Crawford; 12 great-grandchildren; 19 great-great-grandchildren; and her stepchildren and their families, Shelley (Sam) White of Granbury, Texas, Mike (Angela) McKenzie of Madison, Sara (Mitch) L'Herault of Verona, Bill (Linda) McKenzie of Rhinelander, and Lynn McKenzie of Cottage Grove. She is further survived by many nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.

In addition to her first husband, Archie, she was preceded in death by her second husband, Derald, on Aug. 25, 2014; her parents, Anton and Esther; a great-grandson, Zachary; a step-granddaughter, Lindsay McKenzie; three sisters, Bette Cocking, Zona Schufletowski, and Mildred Hansen; and a brother, Anton Datel Jr.

The funeral service for Barb will take place at 1 p.m. Saturday, June 29, 2019, at Redeemer Ev. Lutheran Church in Tomahawk with Rev. Mark Gass officiating. Visitation will be from 10:30 a.m. until the time of service on Saturday at the church. Interment will follow the service in Greenwood Cemetery. Carlson Funeral Home (715-369-1414 / is assisting Barb's family with arrangements.

A memorial will be established in Barb's name for the benefit and support of a local veterans organization and contributions may be directed in care of her family.

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