Mary Hinsberger

Mary E. Hinsberger, 94, passed away on Monday, Oct. 8, 2012 at the Mayo Clinic Health System in La Crosse.

She resided at Hearten House I, where she received outstanding kindness and care from the staff for the last several years. Thank you!

She was born on Oct. 19, 1917 in Caledonia, Minn. to Mike and Mary (Sheehan) Stadtler, and decided she did not want to be 95. Mary was a leader in her time. She was a cheerleader at Loretto High School in Caledonia where she managed to letter in cheerleading, just like the football players. Mary was extremely active in the Democratic Party. She served as secretary for the Third District Democratic Party, and was a delegate to the 1956 Democratic National Convention. Mary served on the city council as third ward supervisor in 1962, and was the first woman elected to the La Crosse county board. Mary, fondly known as Disaster Mary, was the first Civil Defense director for the city of La Crosse, and was instrumental in getting the siren system installed. She was the Civil Defense director during the 1965 floods and also the big fire at Lutheran Hospital.

Mary received an award from the AARP for her service to the community. She was instrumental in getting HMOs started in La Crosse and received the first card issued to the 65 Plus Plan (now Health Traditions) from Franciscan Skemp. She was also involved with NAMI of Wisconsin. Mary also lived for a number of years at Dutch Hollow Lake, where she was on the board of directors and involved in community activities.

She is survived by her daughters, Judy (James) Oestreich of La Crosse and Mary Mangan of Madison; grandchildren, David (Janine) Hutchison, La Crosse; Sean (Karlann) Hutchison, Combined Locks, Wis.; James Hutchison, Winston Salem, N.C.; Brian (Debbie) Mangan, Germantown, Wis.; Paula (Scott) West, Madison; Matthew Mangan, Philadelphia, Pa.; Maureen (Ken) Minn, San Francisco, Calif.; John Hinsberger, Pocatello, Idaho; Thomas (Teri) Hinsberger, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Todd (Jen) Hinsberger, Phoenix, Ariz.; step-grandchildren, Troy Oestreich, Eau Claire and Amy Oestreich, Lake Tahoe, Calif., and great-grandchildren, Christa and Kaitlyn Hutchison, Aylx and Eli Hutchison, Jake and Allie Mangan, Brevan and Adam West, Nolan Minn, Breana and Michael Hinsberger, Emily and Max Hinsberger, and Tyler and Avrey Oestreich. She was preceded in death by her husband Gerald, three sons, Michael, John and James, a granddaughter Teri Hinsberger, her parents, two brothers, Lloyd and Raymond, and a sister Evelyn Haupert.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, October 12, 2012 at 10:30 a.m. at Mary, Mother of the Church Parish at St. Thomas More Catholic Church. Rev. Douglas Robertson will officiate. Burial will be in the Gate of Heaven Cemetery. Friends may call at the Schumacher-Kish Funeral Home of La Crosse on Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m. and at the church on Friday from 9:30 a.m. until the time of services. A Rosary will be recited Thursday at 4 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Hearten House I, 2573 So. 7th Street, La Crosse.

Our very Irish mom had a gentle manner and beautiful voice. We will remember her singing in choir, and will hear her voice now in the most beautiful choir of all. Bye Mom!

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