Bonnie Lee (Blumenberg) Friske, age 81 of Ashland, WI, passed away peacefully in her home surrounded by her family.
Bonnie was born in Milwaukee, WI, November 9th, 1939. Her parents were Walter Robert Blumenberg and Edith Sophia (Carlson) Blumenberg. In 1950, Bonnie’s family moved to a farm in Ashland. She started in the 6th grade at the Highland School and went from 1,000 students to 20! She helped a lot with the farm work and was a member of Sunny Highlander’s 4-H club for 9 years. In her junior year in high school, she spent a semester in a work experience program at the Register of Deeds Office in the Ashland County Courthouse. She never dreamed that someday her husband would be the Register of Deeds! She was employed part-time after school, (and later full-time), with the telephone company. She was an operator and would ask for the number and connect you by plugging into the switchboard. She graduated from Ashland High School with honors on June 6th, 1957.
As telephones were changing to direct dial, Bonnie accepted a bookkeeping position with Ashland Body Work’s in February of 1958. In November of that same year, she met her husband, Wendell Friske at a roller-skating rink in Mason. They were married August 6, 1960. Shortly after the birth of her daughter, she left her bookkeeping position to take care of her family, have two sons, work beside her husband to run a dairy farm and the Riverside Campground (Cozy Valley/Mellen, WI). She gardened, canned, baked bread, and sewed many of her family’s clothes.
In 1970, the farm and campground were sold, and Bonnie’s family moved to Ashland. She loved traveling and camping with her family. She had seen all but four states and travelled through all of the providences of Canada, except Newfoundland. She and Wendell travelled twice to Alaska. She enjoyed Country Music and attended Country Music Festivals, and visited Branson, MO several times. For 9 years, Bonnie was a 4-H leader for the Pearce Peppers 4-H club, an Eileen Historical Society member and a member of Zion Lutheran Quilters.
In 1978, Bonnie accepted a part-time assistant bookkeeper position with the City of Ashland. In 1983, it became a full-time position and in 1985, she became the Computer Accounts Specialist for the City of Ashland. She worked in City Hall for 21 years before retiring in 1999. On August 6, 2020, Bonnie and Wendell celebrated 60 years together.
Bonnie was a devoted daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend. She will be missed, but her legacy lives on. She is survived by her husband, Wendell Friske; children: Deanna Ellestad (Randy), Knife River, MN, James Friske, Ashland, WI, Michael Friske (Kathy), Southlake, TX; her sister, Patsy Ann Cote’, Bradenton, FL; four grand-children, Zachary Friske (Wanda), Houston, TX, Tyler Friske, Oklahoma City, OK, Matthew Friske (Morgan), Richardson, TX, Sarah Friske, Southlake, TX; and one very special great-grandchild, Everett Friske.
Due to current circumstances, a Celebration of Life Event will be announced when it is safe to do such an event.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Mountain Funeral Home of Ashland and Mellen, WI.