Obituary: Marilyn Jean Cooper

October 11, 1932 ~ November 14, 2020

Marilyn Jean Cooper, 88, of the Town of Gibraltar, died on Saturday, November 14, 2020 at Door County Medical Center in Sturgeon Bay.

She was born October 11, 1932 in Green Bay, the daughter of the late Joseph Albert Ruttner and Anna Matilda (Dworak) Ruttner. Marilyn grew up on the family farm on Old Settlers Road north of Fontenoy and attended Fontenoy School in the Town of New Denmark and Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Denmark. She graduated from Denmark High School with the class of 1950. Marilyn initially worked for Theys Orchards in Luxemburg for 5-10 years before farming in Montpelier for over 20 years. Her primary employment was with Good Samaritan Society-Scandia Village (nursing home) in Sister Bay in northern Door County where she helped in the kitchen as a dietician, caring for the residents for over 35 years until her retirement in 2017.

Marilyn married Stanley Vercel Cooper on June 15, 1998 at the Door County Courthouse in Sturgeon Bay. She cleaned homes with Stan when she wasn’t working at Scandia Village. They shared nearly seven years of marriage. Stan preceded Marilyn in death on March 24, 2005.

She was a former member of St. Paul Ev. Lutheran Church in the Town of Montpelier and then St. Peter Ev. Lutheran Church in the Town of Carlton, both in Kewaunee County. Marilyn was currently a member of Christ Ev. Lutheran Church north of Baileys Harbor in the Town of Liberty Grove. Her faith provided a foundation for her life and continued to bring her comfort in her final weeks and days.

Marilyn loved gardening and sitting in her swing in the yard at home, watching the birds. She also liked canning. Marilyn never had any (biological) children, but she always claimed she had 14, as she thought of her nieces and nephews (and their spouses and significant others) as her own children.

Marilyn’s love will live on in the hearts of her beloved nieces and nephews, Carol Diehlmann of Little Suamico, Dennis (friend, Angela Van Pay) Ruttner of Maribel, Christine (Curtiss “Butch”) Schoen of Denmark, Karen (friend, Gene “Sonny” Scudder) Arendt-Borchardt of Green Bay, Daniel Rezek of Cooperstown, David Ruttner of Abrams, Debra (Glenn) Musil of Carlsville, Mark (friend, Lisa Treml) Ruttner of Kewaunee, Joan (friend, Todd Brey) Hoogland of Green Bay, William “Billy” (friend, Tracy Fisher) Ruttner of Denmark, Kathleen (Joseph) Tuschel of Mishicot, and Cindy (friend, Tim Albers) Paider of Denmark; niece-in-law and nephew-in-law, Norma Ruttner of Beloit and Harold Kapla of Abrams; many great nieces and great nephews; cousins; and friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers, Vernon (Harriet) and Burton (LaVerne) Ruttner; nieces and nephew, Lynn Kapla, Sharon Rezek, and, Daniel Ruttner; niece-in-law and nephews-in-law, Tony Paider, Glenn Arendt, Glenn Borchardt, Theresa (Bitto) Ruttner, and William Diehlmann; great-niece, Jessica Paider; other relatives; and friends.

PUBLIC visitation for family and friends will be held from 9:00 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, November 19, 2020 at HUEHNS Funeral Home, 1414 Michigan Street, Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235. Dual-chapel occupancy at the funeral home will be limited to 50 people (including family at a given time). Those in attendance are to wear face masks and maintain social distancing.

Due to current gathering limitations relating to the pandemic, the funeral service at the funeral home will be PRIVATE to family with Pastor Peter Lindemann, of Christ Ev. Lutheran Church, officiating. The funeral service will be LIVESTREAMED at 11:00 a.m. via the “Casperson Funeral Home & Cremation Services, LLC” Facebook page. Those anticipating viewing from Facebook are welcome to “Like” the Casperson Funeral Home Facebook page (anytime) prior to the service to receive immediate notification of the (live) broadcast.

Burial will be in Evergreen Cemetery in Algoma, beside her husband, Stan.

Memorials may be given in Marilyn’s honor for any of the churches she attended throughout her life or Good Samaritan Society-Scandia Village in Sister Bay.

A special thanks goes out to Dr. Rory Johnson of Door County Medical Center Clinic in Fish Creek, Physician Assistant Adam Harrig at Aurora BayCare Cardiology in Sturgeon Bay, and Nurse Practitioner Kelli Frederickson at Aurora BayCare Cardiology for their wonderful care given to our aunt, Marilyn as well as the Door County Emergency Services staff in northern Door County for their care and efforts. Also, thank you to Pastor Peter Lindemann for the home visits and ministerial care you offered to Marilyn. She really appreciated that.

Casperson Funeral Home in Sister Bay is assisting the family. Expressions of sympathy, memories, and photos of Marilyn may be shared with her family through her tribute page at