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The Northwoods River News | Rhinelander, Wisconsin

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March 30, 2023

12/9/2022 5:29:00 AM
Shelbra Jean Rustad

Shelbra Jean Rustad, age 64, was called home to our Lord peacefully on Sunday, Dec. 4, 2022, at her home surrounded by her family.

She was born on Nov. 19, 1958, in Rhinelander, to Barbara (Owens) Rustad and Elden "Buzzy" Rustad.

Shelbra retired from the Rhinelander paper mill after 37 years. Shelbra was the first woman to work on and operate a paper machine. Shelbra was a master gardener and avid outdoors woman. She loved deer hunting in the Northwoods and trout fishing in the Bighorns. She could tell you everything about all plants, trees, birds, animals, etc.

Nothing made her happier than gardening and spending time with her grandkids and family. She loved teaching her daughters and grandkids to hunt, fish and to enjoy all the seasons and nature around us. Anyone who stopped by her house was treated to a tour of all her flowers and flower beds. Even if you were there every day you got a tour. She lived by her own set of rules and could and would accomplish anything she put her mind to.

She is survived by her life partner in crime Joseph Kennedy and the kids Jessica (Keith) Kennedy, Jamie (Bill) Smoczyk, Kristi (Scott) McGee, Kristopher (Lindsey) Kennedy, Kevin (Tania) Kennedy and Kyle Kennedy; her 15 grandkids: Mikhail, Kody, Kade, Samantha, Alicia, Lisa, Konnor, Talayn, Kelley, Hayley, Kyleigh, Emmaline, Amelia, Joseph and Midwin; her brothers Troy (Jayme) Rustad and Eric Rustad and her sister Lora Rustad.

She was proceeded in death by her parents Barbara Owens Rustad and Elden "Buzzy" Rustad and one grandchild, Kaleb Kennedy.

A celebration of life will take place this summer when Shelbra's flower gardens are in full bloom, as per her wishes.

You may leave your private condolences for the Rustad family at

The Carlson Funeral Home (715-369-1414) is handling the arrangements for the family.

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