Ray and Marian met after he moved to Menomonee Falls during High School but they didn’t start dating until he returned from serving in the the Marine Corps. Ray’s mother suggested that he ask Marian out because she walked with such poise and confidence. Marian’s free, independent spirit quickly caught Ray’s affection; in fact, she was the first woman in Menomonee Falls to own a motorcycle!
Ray and Marian met after he moved to Menomonee Falls during High School but they didn’t start dating until he returned from serving in the the Marine Corps. Ray’s mother suggested that he ask Marian out because she walked with such poise and confidence. Marian’s free, independent spirit quickly caught Ray’s affection; in fact, she was the first woman in Menomonee Falls to own a motorcycle! Their dating days consisted of concerts, museums, the theater, and other interesting outings. On one date, they were taking the ferry across Lake Michigan. They had not traveled very far from shore when Ray asked about the ferry’s return. Upon learning that it would not come back until the following day, he insisted that the Captain turn the ferry around! He did not want to incur the wrath of Marian’s dad!
After a few months, Marian threw a surprise birthday party for Ray. That sealed the deal and he knew she was the girl for him! A few weeks later, he proposed, presenting her with an engagement ring and an adorable Irish Setter puppy named Ross. They were married on June 30, 1951 at St. Mary Church, Menomonee Falls, where they still actively serve by lectoring and ushering.
Ray and Marian welcomed four daughters into their family and raised them to believe they could do anything they set their minds to, even becoming president of the United States – a pretty revolutionary idea at that time!
For many years Ray and Marian managed the Etzel Dairy, a delivery service for Menomonee Falls and the surrounding area. During the dairy days, Marian would make Ray a full breakfast of eggs, bacon, and toast at 4 AM every day. They were quite the dynamic duo! After they sold the dairy in 1968, Ray went into real estate and Marian had a variety of jobs outside the home when the girls went to school.
Ray and Marian have always loved people and their home remains a haven with an open door for family and friends. They have no greater joy than when their home is filled with the laughter and activity of their seven grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren.
Serving others has always been a passion for Ray and Marian. They live out their faith as the hands and feet of Jesus. Currently, Ray arranges and participates in Military Honor Guards for the funerals of veterans and Marian serves the Menomonee Falls Food Pantry and volunteers at the hospital. They are also active in the St. Ben’s Meal program, the Legion Post, the Knights of Columbus and other organizations.
Ray and Marian still enjoy traveling at 93 and 95 years of age. In October, they took a two week cruise through the Panama Canal with three of their daughters and a son-in-law. In November, they flew to South Carolina for the wedding of their oldest great-grandchild. They still set goals and love life and adventure.
It is a testimony of their faith in God and their love for each other that Ray and Marian have lived in the same house with the same spouse for almost 72 years!
Marriage Advice: Always spend less money than you make.
We Advocate, Educate, And Network To Preserve Wisconsin Family Values!