Freida M. Heckmann, age 89, of Sheboygan, passed away peacefully on Sunday, June 5, 2022, at Sheboygan Progressive Health Services.
Freida was born April 12, 1933, to Carl and Meta (Roepke) Kobs and grew up in Americus, Georgia. She met her first husband, Wayne Woelffer, when he followed her home after church while she was visiting relatives in Lake Mills, WI. They married in 1951 while he was home on leave from the Korean War and eventually moved to Sheboygan where they raised their family. Their children include Jerry Woelffer (Milwaukee), Bill (Margo) Woelffer of Sheboygan, Terri (Jeff) Couwenhoven of Port Washington, and Nancy Schmeling (Tom) of Huntington Beach, California. As a mother, she generously volunteered her time as Den mother, Girl Scout leader, PTA president and Sunday school teacher. She spent most of her working career at Sears. Freida was deeply spiritual and active in her church. She served as Deacon, helped establish bus ministry for non-driving church members, was an active member of the Care committee and enjoyed bible study.
As empty nesters, Wayne and Freida began square dancing when Freida decided they needed “exercise”. They traveled to square dance conventions across the country and tried (unsuccessfully) to involve their kids in this activity. Freida taught lessons for many years, danced in local parades, organized wheelchair square dancing at nursing homes. Eventually, she opened a shop selling square dancing clothes in her home.
In retirement, Freida valued time with grandchildren Julia Schmeling, Joe Schmeling, Anna Couwenhoven, Lindy Couwenhoven and later her great grandchildren - Maddie, Morgan, and Cooper Gibas. She continued to stay active in her community, volunteering with Meals on Wheels and working for Comfort Keepers. Freida loved to travel, especially where the weather was warm – Florida, Hawaii, and visiting family in California were some favorite destinations. She was a lover of dogs and always had at least one canine companion throughout her life.
Much later in life she met Warren Heckmann and they married when she was 74. They resided in Spring Valley where she cherished watching birds, nature and tending to her flower gardens. She enjoyed spending time with Warren and his family.
In addition to the family listed above, Freida is further survived by Warren’s children, Steve and Tim (Michelle) Heckmann; Warren’s grandchildren; and other relatives and friends.
Freida was preceded in death by her first husband, Wayne Woelffer; her second husband, Warren Heckmann; parents; her four older brothers; and other relatives and friends.
A celebration of Freida’s life will take place at 11:00 AM on Friday, June 10th, 2022, at First Congregational Church (310 Bluff Ave, Sheboygan, WI 53081) with Pastor Jim Hollister officiating. A public visitation will be held from 10:00 AM until the time of the service at the church. Freida’s service will be livestreamed and viewable at a later date from her obituary page.
Interment will follow at Sunrise Memorial Gardens.
We are forever thankful for the amazing staff at Progressive Health Services in Sheboygan these past almost 4 years. We will miss them and the residents whom we befriended over the years.
Memorial donations may be directed to the Sheboygan Humane Society in Freida’s name.