Gretchen Haase Altenbern (nee Haase), of Waukesha, passed away peacefully on Thursday April 11, 2019 at the age of 85. She was born on April 26, 1933 in Lombard, Illinois to Paul F. and Edna M. (nee Shattuck) Haase. As a child, her family relocated to Waukesha, where her father established the Wisconsin Coach Lines Bus Company. Gretchen graduated from Waukesha High School in 1951. She went on to attend the University of Wisconsin Madison where she met Stanley E. Altenbern. They married on December 26, 1953 and, together, raised their three children.
Gretchen was very active in the Waukesha Symphony Auxiliary for many years. More recently, with her love of history and antiques, she became a member of the Questers Historical Club. She also enjoyed traveling and watching football, especially the Green Bay Packers.
She will be deeply missed by her daughters, Amy (Tom) McGuine and Sara Semrad; grandchildren, Samantha (Chris Hilmer) Semrad, Tyler (Stacey) Semrad, Thomas Semrad, Peter McGuine, and Mary McGuine; one great grandchild, Mika Hilmer; nieces, Nancy Gray, Kathy Glackin, and Carolyn Haase, Deborah (Dave) Nelson and nephew Doug (Kelly) Altenbern, as well as many other extended family members and cherished friends. Gretchen was preceded in death by her parents; husband; son, Peter Altenbern; and brother, Paul Haase Jr.
Visitation for Gretchen will be held on Thursday, April 18, 2019 from 10:00am until the time of services at 12:00pm at Cesarz, Charapata & Zinnecker Funeral Home located at 237 N. Moreland Blvd., Waukesha, WI 53188. Burial will immediately follow at Prairie Home Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the American Heart Association, 1555 N Rivercenter Dr Ste 211, Milwaukee, WI 53212.