Eleanor Paulmann of Sheboygan, passed away peacefully at Azura Memory Care on August 27, 2020, at the age of 95, with her daughter holding her hand until her last breath. Eleanor was born on February 5, 1925, to parents Emil and Margaret Sohm, in Oshkosh Wisconsin. She was the last surviving child of their six children.
Ellie graduated from Oshkosh High School in 1942. She went on to attend the teaching college at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, graduating with high honors in 1945. Additionally she was a member of the Phi Betta Kappa, America's most prestigious honor society. Upon graduation, Ellie accepted a teaching position, in the Sheboygan Area School District. She moved to Sheboygan, along with two of her classmates. She met her future husband, former long time, Sheboygan Alderman and County Board Supervisor, James Paulmann after his return from WWII. They met at a popular establishment in Sheboygan on North 8th street called the Bismarck. They were married on July 31, 1948 and made their home, for most of their lives on North 4th Street. She enjoyed living near Lake Michigan and loved the "cooler by the lake" aspect of her location. Ellie continued to teach until her son James Jr., was born in 1952, and then chose to stay at home, and be a full time mother. When her daughter Anne was around 9 years old, she decided to get back to her love of teaching. She started substitute teaching again at Grant Elementary School, and within a year, she was back to teaching full time, at Washington School. She continued teaching at Washington School until her retirement in 1987. Mrs. Paulmann made an impact in many children's lives within the community. Students remembered her and she remembered them. When her husband passed away in 2009, a former student came to the funeral. He had Mrs. Paulmann as his 4th grade teacher 50 years prior. He read the obituary, and said he wanted to come to express his condolences in person, as she was his favorite childhood teacher. When she entered memory care, she recognized the last name of one of her favorite caregivers. She asked the caregiver if she knew the student, she had taught, with the same last name. It was the caregiver's husband. She told the caregiver, that she remembered he could tend to be a bit "naughty" at times. Ellie told the caregiver she was so glad he was married to such a nice woman, who was now improving the quality of her life. This caregiver was instrumental in setting up an experience through Azura's Dreams Program, in which Ellie was, brought back to Grant Elementary School, to recreate a time in her life where teaching was so important to her. She was invited into a classroom, in which she read a book to a group of children that gathered around her. One of her former students came into the room to surprise her, and she was now an elementary teacher. The joy in her face will never be forgotten. A sincere thank you to all that made this possible.
Ellie was a member of the First Congregational Church and taught Sunday school there. She was also a member of the National Education Association, Wisconsin Education Association and various school Parent Teacher Associations, as well as a Cub Scout den mother. She and her husband Jim, were founding members of the Sheboygan Chapter of People to People International, and the sister city program with Esslingen Germany. They were both instrumental in the founding of Bratwurst Day, as she was a member of the Jaycettes, the Jaycees woman's group. Both Ellie and her husband were also members of the Elks Club. They both had a love for golf and Ellie was a member of the Riverdale Ladies Golf League.
Travel was something she and her husband loved to do and enjoyed many vacations together. Their travels included trips to the Caribbean, Hawaii, Mexico, along with many destinations within the United States. In their retirement years, they wintered in Sarasota Florida, spending time with their son and his family. They also traveled back to Europe with friends, to tour areas that her husband had flown missions over in WWII. On their 50th wedding anniversary, they traveled to Niagara Falls, Canada with their children and grandchildren.
Ellie enjoyed sports. She loved watching the Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago White Sox baseball teams, PGA golf, and the Green Bay Packers. She and her husband were season ticket holders of the Green Bay Packers. Her grandsons Adam and Kyle, proudly represent them in those same seats at Lambeau Field.
Ellie's grandchildren were the love of her life. She spent many hours reading to them, sharing her love for learning, and just being (as they called her) their granny! A game of mini golf was always something she enjoyed with all three of her grandchildren. She enjoyed attending every sporting event they participated in, and was their biggest fan. She passed her love of golf onto her granddaughter Jessica, and watched her from the time she was a young girl, throughout high school and college. She also enjoyed watching Jessica pitch for her high school softball team. Her grandsons Adam and Kyle kept her busy watching their many baseball, basketball and soccer games from the time they were young throughout high school. As she got older and unable to attend all games in person, Kyle kept her busy following all his soccer games throughout college and as a high school coach. She always wanted a report on how he or the team did. Her passion for teaching was an inspiration to both her grandsons and she was very proud of the fact that they became teachers, both teaching currently in the Madison Metropolitan School District.
Ellie was preceded in death by her parents, and husband James, along with her siblings, Hubert, Harvey, Emil, Irene and Marie. She is also survived by her son James Jr. (Laura) Paulmann, Sarasota Florida, her daughter Anne (Dave) Koenig, Sheboygan, Granddaughter Jessica (Travis) Harrison, Fort Myers Florida, Grandsons Adam (Jennifer) Koenig and Kyle (Amanda) Koenig both of Madison Wisconsin. She is further survived by her two great grandchildren, Jamie Harrison and Walter Koenig, along with a third great grandchild she was unfortunately unable to meet, Adam and Jennifer's second child due in November.
The family would like to give sincere thanks to the staff members of Azura Memory Care, past and present, who provided her with so much love, especially during these unprecedented times, with the facility closed to family and visitors, due to the pandemic. Thanks also go to the Heartland Hospice staff for their compassionate care, during this time, and for helping her on her final journey through life.
"Granny" there will always be a place for you in all of our hearts. Thank you for giving us this time with you on earth. We will forever be grateful for the love you gave us. We promise to teach your great grandchildren the golden rule. "No running...no jumping!" This is not goodbye. It is until we see each other again.
Due to limitations on public gatherings regarding Covid-19, the family has chosen to have a private family service at this time. The family is planning a celebration of her life at a future date.
In lieu of flowers, the family has setup a memorial fund in Eleanor's name. The funds will be directed towards the purchase of literacy material to support student learning at Grant Elementary School.