Obit: Beeckler, Gladys (1892 - 1947)

Contact: Stan

Surnames: Beeckler, French, Rodman

----Source: CLARK COUNTY PRESS (Neillsville, Clark County, Wis.) 06/19/1947

Beekler, Gladys (13 JAN 1892 - 12 JUN 1947)

Gladys French Beeckler was interred Monday in the Neillsville Cemetery. Her death marks the passing of the only local member in the current generation of the French family, which has been a part of local history for 98 years.

Mrs. Beeckler died last Thursday. Death was due to a blood clot, cause by an injury she received some months ago. She suffered from a blood clot shortly after the injury, but seemed to recover. The second was more than her strength could take.

Mrs. Beeckler died upon the ancestral acres in the town of Levis (Clark Co., Wis.). It was land which had long been in the French family, part of the tract which the four French brothers settled almost a century ago. To that location went B. F. (Doc) French, when, in 1849, he sought his tortures in what were then the wilds of Crawford County.

Doc French and his three brothers, James, Joseph and Robert B., helped to create Clark County. Doc French was the first treasurer of the county and the first master of the local Masonic Lodge. While he and his family eventually left the Levis land and moved into Neillsville, the other brothers remained on the land, including the grandfather of Gladys French Beeckler, Robert B. French. Her father, the present Robert French, only son of the original Robert French, succeeded to the family tradition and farm.

Gladys represented the fourth generation of the French family to live upon the land in Levis. She ended her life there, as did Capt. John French, father of the four French brothers, a soldier of the war of 1812, who came to Clark County to be with his sons in his last years.

Gladys Beeckler spent her entire life upon the French land. She missed being born there. Though her father and mother lived upon the ancestral acres, her mother, a Rodman, went to the Rodman home, located near the present fairgrounds, to be with her mother when the baby came. Soon thereafter the baby and the mother went back to the home in Levis. The date of her birth was January 13, 1892, 43 years after the French family first set foot in what is now Clark County. She was educated in the nearby country school, and later in Neillsville High School.

Gladys succeeded to the family’s live interest in public affairs. She became Clerk of Riverside School, having an important part in the reconstruction of the school building. She was a emmber of the county health committee. She succeeded her mother as correspondent of the Clark County Press, and for years rendered an important neighborly service, being one of the most capable and prolific of the correspondents of this newspaper. She was a member of the Happy Hour Club and of the Royal Neighbors.

Gladys French was married in the same home where she died. Her marriage took place December 21, 1916. Her husband was George Beeckler. Except for Gladys, no other children came to the Robert French Home. Hence it was left for Mr. Beeckler to take the place of a son and to succeed to the family traditions and responsibilities, as the burden of age gradually closed in on Mr. French. Mr. Beeckler has lived and worked in line with the tradition, taking his living from the land and contributing to the community by service as town chairman. He and Gladys’ parents survive her in the old family home.

With the passing of Gladys, the descent of the French line will be solely through the offspring of B. F. French, there being no surviving children in the lines of Robert, Joseph and James French. B. F. French had four daughters and two sons, and there are male descendants in the present generation to carry on the family name.

Final rites for Gladys were held Monday Afternoon at Zion Reformed Church, in charge of the Georgas Funeral Home. The Rev. N. J. Dechant officiated. The funeral was notable for the large attendance, which overtaxed the capacity of the building. Pallbearers were Guy Schultz, Herman Embke, Elmer and Herbert Filitz, George Bryan and Alvin Wendt. Flowers were in charge of Mrs. Janie Paulus, Mrs. Nina Embke, Mrs. Vera Schultz, Mrs. Hazel Holub, Miss Bernice Buddinger, Miss Betty Reindel and Miss Evelyn Opelt. Singers were the Misses Velda Dahnert, Gloria Milton, Shirley Haugen and Patricia VanGorden. Accompanist was Mrs. Marian Arndt.

Those attending from out of town were: Mr. and Mrs. Joe Secord, Mr. and Mrs. Dennis Vadnais, Miss Cornelia Cummings and Mrs. Secord, of Green Bay; Miss Margaret Beeckler of Madison; Mr. and Mrs. Lee Rodman and Mr. and Mrs. Hershel Rodman of Waukegan, Ill.; Mr. and Mrs. Clark Waterman, Mrs. H. B. Holmes, Gertrude Holmes, Pearl, Bessie and Daphne Beeckler, Mr. and Mrs. Ben Beeckler and family, orra Beeckler and Clay Converse of Granton; Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Smith, Milwaukee; Mr. and Mrs. Earl Pickett and family, Spencer; Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Boley, Sheboygan; Mr. and Mrs. Ervin Fischer and family, greenwood; Miss Mary Breed of Blaine, Wash.; Mr. and Mrs. Frank Fuxbury and Mrs. Emma Royce, alma Center; Mrs. Clifford Nelson, Black River Falls.



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