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In Memory of Paul Putnam


May 19, 1927 - March 7, 2020

Paul Putnam Age 92, of Rice Lake, WI passed away on Saturday, March 7, 2020, at the Marshfield Medical Center in Marshfield, WI where he was surrounded by his loving family.

Paul was born on May 19, 1927, on the “Peanut Farm” in New Auburn. He went on to marry the love of his life, Clara Mae Baumberger on October 13, 1950. Together they farmed, had 3 sons, and even dabbled in bee keeping until he could he was allergic to bees. Paul reluctantly gave up farm life. He was the last person in Barron County to battle polio, and the farm life became too much. He then went to work at Birchwood Manufacturing where he climbed the ranks to foreman. He worked a long, hard life and retired as a bus driver for the Rice Lake City Round Towner. In 1989, he lost Clara “Curly” Mae to cancer. Despite his loss, he continued to keep her memory alive through loving stories told with tearful eyes that he shared with his sons and 6 grandchildren. Paul took time to hand write cookbooks with Clara Mae’s favorite recipes for each family member. Paul loved creating nicknames for his loved ones and granted each one of his grandchildren his/her own: “Bum Fizzle” Dave Putnam, “Rottin Ron” Ron Putnam, “Boogie Lynn” Courtney Holub, “Anners Mae” Deanna Weddig, “Gare-Bear” Gary Putnam, and “Jack Rabbit” Jackie Schoettl. He enjoyed hunting and fishing with his sons. Mornings were spent around the kitchen table with his sons, eating breakfast and drinking coffee. Many afternoons were shared with his close friend and traveling companion, Bertha Rude. They enjoyed playing games, fishing, running errands, and driving to visit family and his beloved grandchildren and great grandchildren. He would also sit down and write stories about growing up in New Auburn, meeting Clara Mae, and spending time with the grandchildren. One special Christmas, we all received a copy of “From the Table of the Old Dreamer.” Paul shared his good humor by testing his grandchildren’s treats and beverages for “caffeine.” Paul was deeply loved and will be greatly missed by family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Clara Mae Putnam; infant brother; 2 brothers, Robert Putnam and Daniel Putnam; 2 sisters, Ruth Billie Putnam and Dorthy Wampfler; parents, C. Jay and Beatrice Putnam; and a daughter-in-law, Marlena Kay Putnam. He is survived by his son, Donald Putnam of Rice Lake: Courtney (Lyle) Holub; son, Robert (Janet) Putnam of Rice Lake: David (Michelle) Putnam and Ron (Wendi Hart) Putnam; son, Jeffrey (Nancy) Putnam of Eau Claire: Deanna (Patrick) Weddig, Gary (Amanda) Putnam, and Jackie (Tyler) Schoettl; and many great grandchildren, great great grandchildren; and nieces and nephews; and a sister-in-law, Marilyn Putnam of Rice Lake.

Funeral Services will be held at 11AM Wednesday, March 11, 2020, at the United Presbyterian Church, Rev. Chris McCurdy officiating, with interment in the Orchard Beach Cemetery in Rice Lake. Visitation will be held for one hour prior to the Funeral Service at the Church on Wednesday.

In lieu of flowers, memorials would be appreciated to the United Presbyterian Church.


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