Marian LaDuke

Marian L. LaDuke of Mondovi, WIS., died on Nov. 18, 2017, one day before her 93rd birthday, at Dove Health Care-West in Eau Claire, Wis.
Marian was born Nov. 19, 1924, to Leighton and Elsie (Nystrom) Webb, in the town of Bloomer, Chippewa County, Wisconsin. She graduated from New Auburn High School and from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, where she majored in education. She later achieved ¾ of her masters degree in education before retiring from her teaching in 1987.
She started her teaching career in a one-room school house—Tillinghast School in Chippewa County. She taught there for three years. Each morning, she would start her day with shoveling coal into the stove that stood in the corner of the classroom. She was used to hard work, as she lived on her family farm and helped with the milking every morning and night while growing up. After leaving Tillinghast, she taught for one year in Eleva. She wanted to marry and have children, but Eleva did not allow female teachers to be married and be pregnant, so she left and began her 34-year teaching career in the Mondovi School District.
She married Milton LaDuke, in Bloomer, March 12, 1949.
She was a member of Our Savior’s United Methodist Church.
Marian was an avid reader, Bridge player, and chocolate chip cookie and fudge maker. “Fudge Season” ran from Nov. 1 through Dec. 23 of every year. Chocolate chip cookie day was a different day of each week for Josh’s, Jean’s and Todd’s families. Jena would load up on her visits to grandma….Cody and Jake, too.
Marian was a teacher for 38 years. She taught all grades but spent most of her teaching time in first and second grades. She loved teaching children how to read. She felt total enjoyment when the “light bulb turned on” and a struggling reader became a confident reader. Math was also a love of hers. She often said that if a child knew how to read and they could do math everything else would follow. Marian was a loyal friend and was always willing to help whenever she could. She was very lucky to have such a loyal friend in return. Marilyn Hagen was not only her teaching partner but a dear friend also. They remained very close long after Marian’s retirement.
Marian is survived by her daughter, Jean (Jim) Sandberg; son, Todd (Vicky) LaDuke; four grandchildren, Jena (Eric) Elmhorst, Josh (Kari) Sandberg, Cody (Ashley) LaDuke and Jake (friend Kelly) LaDuke; six great-grandchildren, Carley and Ross Elmhorst, Emma and Quin Sandberg, and Reid and Sutton LaDuke.
A memorial service was held at 11 a.m. at Our Saviors United Methodist Church, Mondovi, on Saturday, Dec. 2, with Pastor Claire Mather officiating. Burial followed for the immediate family following the service.
Talbot Family Funeral Homes - Mondovi Chapel assisted the family.
Please share your memories and condolences online at


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