Nancy A. Gruel

On July 23, 2021, Nancy Gruel was reunited in Heaven with her family and friends.


Nancy Ann Gruel (nee Gruber) was born in Burlington, WI on November 23, 1932, to Ervin and Margaret (Corry) Gruber. She was a 1950 graduate of Lincoln High School, Manitowoc, Wisconsin. She attended Manitowoc County Teachers School where she received her teaching degree in 1952.


On June 26, 1954, she married the love of her life, Virgil, at Holy Innocents Catholic Church in Manitowoc. Together they built a life in Waukesha where they raised their 8 children.


Mom cherished her faith, family and friends. She was a lifetime member of St. Williams Catholic Church where she was active in Christian Women, a Eucharistic Minister for the Sick and a member of The Catholic Study club.


Her family was her world. When each child was born, she started a box of memories of that child. When we were adults, with tears in her eyes, she gave us our boxes, telling us “my life is that box.” She taught us love, compassion and what it truly means to be a part of a family. She was our biggest cheerleader, reminding us that nothing is impossible as long as you believe in yourself. She was our teacher. She was our healer, wiping away tears, bandaging cuts and mending broken hearts. She always put us first and herself last. Whatever life threw at us, she was there. Her strength became our strength. She was our rock.


Having a sweet tooth herself, Mom always had a smile and a cupcake, ice cream, or cookies for her grandchildren or great grandchildren. (At least she said she made them for the kids!) She would often be found on the floor playing and laughing with them. They loved playing with her as much as she loved being with them.



She was very proud of her Irish heritage and was blessed enough to have traveled to Ireland. She would listen to The Irish Tenors though out the day as well as Tony Bennett and Nat King Cole. Mom was able to travel later in life and once commented, “Who would have thought a country girl from Manitowoc would travel to Ireland, Hawaii and the Caribbean Islands.”

She also loved old musical movies, reading mystery novels and solving crossword puzzles.


Nancy was preceded in death by her husband, her parents, her brother, Tom, sister, Margaret, her son in law, Michael Spang, her brother-in-law, Regis Gruel and her sister-in-law Jeanette Gruel. 


She will be profoundly missed by her children, Gary (Sue), Steve (Nora), Mary Kate (John), Dan (Sandy) Laurie (Tom), Karen, Peggy (Chris) and Jennifer (Brant), her grandchildren, Eric (Jessica) Jamie (Zach), Megan (Theon) Tommy, Kyle, Steven, Olivia, Jacob and Bennett, her great grandchildren, Cameron, Hannah, Logan, Nola, Noah and Saoirse, and many nieces, nephews and friends. 


Visitation for Nancy will be held on Tuesday August 3rd, 2021 from 10:00AM until the 11:00AM Mass of Christian Burial at St. William Catholic Church, 440 N. Moreland Blvd. Waukesha, WI 53188. Entombment will take place privately. In lieu of flowers, memorials in Nancy’s name are appreciated to St. William's Society of St. Vincent De Paul.


Mom, forever in our hearts, forever we will love you.