Wilma Freise, 81, died March 16, 2016 in Sun City West, Ariz. Wilma Helen Goetz was born January 11, 1935 at home in Dunn County, North Dakota, near Halliday. She was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Dunn County. She attended Dunn County schools, graduating from Halliday High School in 1952.
She graduated from the Bismarck Hospital School of Nursing as a Registered Nurse in 1956. Following graduation, she worked for one year at Good Samaritan Hospital in Williston.
Wilma spent the rest of her nursing career in Bismarck, working at Bismarck Hospital intermittently from 1957 to 1967, where she developed a fondness for geriatric nursing.
From 1967 to 1981, she worked at the Baptist Home long-term care facility, where she was Nurse Aide Instructor, Resident Care Coordinator and Assistant Director of Nursing. She organized many programs to benefit the residents and their families.
From 1982 to 1989, Wilma was the RN/LPN Refresher Course Coordinator and Geriatric Nurse Aide workshop coordinator for the North Dakota Nurses’ Association. Her refresher course received honors and was used throughout the nation.
On August 16, 1957, she married Robert Freise (Bob) at Trinity Lutheran Church, Bismarck. They lived east of Bismarck until 1995, when they moved to Sun City West, Arizona. They were members of Trinity Lutheran Church until that time; they then joined Lord of Life Lutheran Church, Sun City West.
Wilma was active in the American Nurses’ Association, in the North Dakota Nurses’ Association, and in the District 6 Nurses’ Association. She coordinated the NDNA Prairie Skies Art Exhibition and Auction from 1991 to 1996. Her awards include the Outstanding Service Award from District 6 in 1989 and the Honorary Recognition Award from NDNA in 1991. She served on a variety of committees for the NDNA, at Trinity Lutheran and at Lord of Life Lutheran.
While she had a variety of interests throughout her life, she focused on actively caring about and for people in her neighborhoods, communities and family. She was an integral part of the Freise family’s horse- and rodeo-related activities.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Emma Miller Goetz and Alex Goetz; brother Harold Goetz; two sisters, Eleanor Butler Johnson and Ruth Darlene Goetz; a brother, Elmer Goetz, who died as a child; and a granddaughter, Kate Elizabeth Heilman.
She is survived by her husband, Robert Freise, Sun City West, AZ; daughters Becky (Owen) Voigt, Helena, Mont.; Kathy Freise and David McChesney, Albuquerque, NM; and Kara (Don) Heilman, Parker, CO; four grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
A memorial service was held March 22 at Lord of Life in Sun City West. Memorials can be mailed to The Banquet, Trinity Lutheran Church, 502 N 4th St., Bismarck, ND 58501.
Go to www.heritagefuneralchapels.com to share memories of Wilma and to sign the online guest book.