Obituary: Gail Elizabeth Prais
Gail Elizabeth Prais
On Sunday, February 3, 2019, Gail Prais – beloved wife, mother, daughter and sister – passed away peacefully at Whispering Pines Assisted Living Center in Plover. Gail will be forever remembered by her husband John, her two daughters Erin (Paul) Prais-Hintz (Stevens Point), Kelly (Daniel) Jones (Cedarburg), grandchildren Calvin, Olivia, Jack and Evelyn, sisters Doris (Marty) Slusarek (Downers Grove, IL), Carol Coté (Cleveland Heights, OH) and sister-in-law Dorothy (Frank) Pisarski (Stevens Point).
Gail was born April 20, 1946 in Geneva, IL to Carolyn (Land) and Robert Doemland, youngest of three daughters. Gail graduated from Nazareth Academy, LaGrange, IL in 1964 and attended UW-Stevens Point from 1964-67. Gail married John Prais on February 3, 1968 at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Stevens Point, marking 51 years of love.
Locally, Gail worked for the Portage County Library, Sentry Insurance and SPAN Publishing.
Gail was a member of both the Stevens Point Country Club and the Stevens Point Curling Club. She volunteered with Operation Bootstrap. Gail was instrumental in coordinating the Stevens Point Sesquicentennial, a city-wide celebration of 150 years, in 2008. In 1998 Gail and John partnered with a committed group of music-loving community leaders to become founding members of the Soirée Musicale event which has since raised over $300,000 for music scholarships at UWSP.
Gail and John loved to travel and had many wonderful trips to places like New York, San Francisco, Italy and Ireland. Door County has a special place in their hearts with so many great trips taken with friends to golf and take in the beautiful sunsets. Annual trips to Florida to visit family and friends were a regular highlight. They were season ticketholders for UW-Madison Badger football and have fond memories of many tailgates, including a family trip to the Rose Bowl in 1999. Gail and John enjoyed traveling to golf tournaments including to see Tiger Woods win the British Open and many memorable trips to the Masters’ Tournament in August, GA, particularly to visit their favorite #16 water hole.
When Gail was blessed with her first grandchild, she insisted on being called “Mima” instead of grandma. Mima loved being with her grandchildren and was proud of their accomplishments in baseball, dance, art, music and academics. She could frequently be found cheering on the team, tapping toes to the dance, clapping with the music, and teaching art to any one of her loving grandchildren.
Gail will be remembered for the impeccable way she dressed (especially her awesome shoe collection which Erin has sought to emulate), her talent to cook a delicious meal without a recipe (an ability Kelly swears skipped a generation), the groundbreaking way she added chocolate chips to her banana bread (and always kept chocolate chips stashed around the house for “chocolate emergencies”), her search to find the perfect crème brulee in every restaurant around the world (a quest that we will all carry on), her love of music and her beautiful singing voice (especially with her favorite crooners named Tony and Frank) and doodling and sketching scenes from her life (especially memorializing Buffy – arf, arf, good dog).
We can’t thank the staff of Whispering Pines enough for providing such a bright and lively home for Gail since 2014. Their kindness, compassion and fellowship gave us great comfort and will never be forgotten. The team from Ascension Hospice was invaluable in their supportive care over the last few weeks. Special thanks goes to Gina Tepp for her loving care and constant friendship over the years.
A Mass of Christian Burial for Gail will be at Holy Spirit Parish, Stevens Point on Saturday February 9, 2019, at 10:30 a.m. Rev. Steve Brice will officiate. Visitation will be held at Pisarski Funeral Home, Stevens Point on Friday from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and again on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. until time of service at Holy Spirit Parish. A celebration of life reception will follow at the Stevens Point Country Club.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association – Greater Wisconsin Chapter, Operation Bootstrap or Ascension Hospice. Pisarski Funeral Homes are honored to be serving the Prais family. For online condolences please visit www.pisarskifuneralhome.com