Obit: Pigott, Gwen I. (1937 – 2014)


Surnames: Pigott, Frensome, Schaeffner, Mrotek, Bushman, Schmidt, Johnson, Delo

----Source: Tribune/Record/Gleaner (Abbotsford, Clark Co., Wis.) 29 Jan 2014

Pigott, Gwen I. (15 MAR 1937 – 25 JAN 2014)

Gwen I. Pigott, 76, Loyal, died on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014, at the House of the Dove, Marshfield. Funeral services will be held at noon on Saturday, Feb. 1, in the Loyal High School Gymnasium. Rev. Patsy Roe will officiate. Burial will follow in the Loyal Cemetery. Pallbearers will be John Kaiser, Curt Mrotek, Cliff Thorson, Tom Kingsbury, Brett Bushman and Henry Aumann Jr. Visitation will be held in the high school gymnasium, on Saturday, from 9 a.m., until time of services.

Gwen Illa Fensome was born on March 15, 1937, in Barron County, the daughter of Herbert G. and Selma I. (nee Schaeffner) Fensome. When she was a young child, her family moved to Loyal, where she was raised and received her education, graduating from Loyal High School in 1954. Gwen then attended Wisconsin Rapids Teacher's College for two years, where she earned her bachelor of science degree, and then earned her master of science degree at Stevens Point State University. She started her teaching career in the fall of 1956. Gwen taught in country rural schools all within the Loyal School District, first at Mack School for two years and then at Lincoln School for six years. In 1964, she started the first kindergarten in Loyal, thus beginning a 42-year run in the kindergarten classroom. After 50 years of teaching, Gwen retired in the spring of 2006. Gwen married Harland Pigott on June 1, 1957, at the Loyal United Methodist Church. He died on Nov. 22, 1981. During their marriage, they farmed in the town of Fremont and opened their home to more than 30 foster children. After Harland's death, Gwen continued teaching, taking in children who needed a home, and had several foreign exchange students from Japan. She had many interests, but especially enjoyed attending school activities and sporting events. While teaching, Gwen loved to travel, and did it extensively since her retirement, having traveled to 58 countries and 47 states in the U.S. She was involved with many organizations and received much recognition throughout her teaching career, including: was a member of the Loyal Free Methodist Church, where she was the Christian education director and Sunday school teacher for more than 25 years; was a long-time friend of the Loyal United Methodist Church, for more than 20 years she was the director of the Loyal Community Bible School for grades pre-K through 6; was past secretary of the Loyal Silver Wrestling Committee; she started the annual community Easter Parade put on entirely by kindergarten children; entered and won many times at the Clark County June Dairy Month Recipe Contest; was nominated as the Loyal Teacher of the Year twice; was one of the first recipients of the Herb Kohl Foundation Fellowship award; was Loyal's Citizen of the Year in 2001; was a recipient of the Community Service Recognition award from Modern Woodmen of America; was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma since 1982; was a member of Tri-County Retired Educators; and was a past member of the Loyal Education Association, Wisconsin Education Association and the National Education Association.

She will be dearly missed by her sister, Carol (Clair) Mrotek, Spring Valley, Minn.; her nephew, Curt (Tamra) Mrotek; her niece, Cindy (Brett) Bushman; three great-nieces, Mariah and Tehya Mrotek and Brianna (fiance Justin Schmidt) Bushman; one great-nephew, Jared (Amber) Bushman and their daughter, Zoey; her foster children, Rita Johnson, Tina Braun, and Jean, Michael and Jenny Delo; and other relatives and many friends.

Gwen was preceded in death by her parents and her husband, Harland.

In lieu of flowers, donations to the Loyal Public School for scholarships or the House of the Dove would be greatly appreciated.

Online condolences may be expressed at

Cuddie Funeral Home, Loyal, is assisting the family with arrangements.



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