Madge Ardis Price, 88, of Fall River, passed away and joined the Lord quietly in her sleep Friday, June 12, 2020. She was born April 19, 1932 in Milwaukee the daughter of William Rantanen.
As a teenager, Madge was sent from Milwaukee to spend the summers on a Rio farm, working as a mother’s helper for a large family. Then after graduating from Bay View High School in 1950, she held many different jobs, such as a clerk at Woolworth, movie theater attendant, packing olives, oh how she detested those olives, and working for the Milwaukee Gas & Electric Company. After moving from Milwaukee, her job focus became more people oriented.
Madge had a heart for care-giving. The majority of her life career choices reflected that. She worked at Waukesha Memorial Hospital, Randolph Nursing Home, and did respite care. She loved rocking her babies, playing on the floor with her toddlers, and doing animated song/story for the children she cared for at Community Care for Kids, Head Start, Honey Bear, and being an organizer for the returning high school mothers’ daycare program.
It seemed we couldn't go anywhere in the area that Madge didn’t know someone who she cared for! For many, she was a substitute mother or auntie offering words of advice. Madge enjoyed volunteering at a local nursing home, teaching crafts, being a 4-H leader, conducting baking classes, a community transportation provider, and was a member of the Columbia County Homemakers, Mary Circle, and the Randolph Red Hatters.
Madge finished her care-giving career as a nanny for the Willihnganz family of four girls and a dog. She became their adopted grandma “Madgie” and worked a mere 20 years with them. She was particularly waiting for another chance to hold little Chandrika once Covid-19 was not a problem. Madge wrapped up her career as a Beaver Dam School crossing guard at about 80 years young. She enjoyed meeting many of her babies all grown up sending their babies to school. It always made her smile when she heard “see that lady, she took care of me when I was little, and you better listen to her!” Though Madge was one busy woman, her family felt very much supported and cared for. It seemed she was always there whenever needed!
Survivors include three daughters, Annette (Darwin) Selle, Naada (Edward) Owens, and Rhea (Randy) Machkovitz; grandchildren Anthony Selle, Conrad Selle, Shaawn Olds, Marcellette (Nicolas) Cloche; great-grandchildren Lucas Selle, Ian, Isaiah, and Elliot Olds and Andrew Cloche; siblings MaryAnn Thyme, Everett (Sheila) Rantanen, John Rantanen, Donna (Brad) Subotnik and their children Jennifer Davis, Sarah (Matt) Poeppel, Justin Rantanen, Janaka Subotnik, Warren Subotnik, and many great nieces, nephews and Madge’s special family Dr. Melodie and Tom Willihnganz and their daughters Sarah, Sonali (Sam Freeman), Molly, and Sophie and their granddaughter Chandrika, Willihnganz Freeman, and numerous other loved ones. She was preceded in death by her father William Rantanen; son Richard D. Price, and great-grandson Matthew Cloche.
Funeral services with social distancing guidelines, 150 or less, and masks are not required- but will be provided if desired, will be held Tuesday, June 23 at 2:30 PM at Zion Lutheran Church in Columbus with Rev. Tim Schwartz officiating. Interment will follow at Lowville Cemetery in Rio. Visitation will be held from 1 PM until the time of services at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Madge's memory may be made to the World Vision Organization, P.O. Box 9716, Federal Way, WA 98063
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