Elizabeth “Betty” (Wolter) Tostrud, age 82, longtime resident of Kenosha, originally from La Crosse, passed away on September 13, 2023 surrounded by her family. Betty was born on February 13, 1941 to the late Alma and Francis Drake. She graduated from La Crosse Central High School. She married John “Jack” Tostrud. Betty worked at American Motors, Brookside Care Center, helped her daughter-in-law run Summer’s Garden flower shop (you probably had Betty make you the prettiest flower arrangement ever!) and Kenosha Human Development Services where she worked for 26 years before retiring in 2019. She managed their 4-bed CBRF in the early 90s and then helped orchestrate the move to an 11-bed CBRF because she knew the important work that a larger CBRF could provide Kenosha and in 2018 when the CBRF moved to its current location, she was presented with a plaque (which is forever on the center’s building) that read “The foundation of the KARE Center is built upon Betty’s character.”
“Grandma” was a driving force to help anyone in need. The thing she loved most was helping people. Her kindness and generosity will be forever cherished and remembered by her children and grandchildren and the many people she has blessed with her presence and love. Those that had the fortune to know her knew she was the true embodiment of love and selflessness. She would give everything she had if it meant another person would be taken care of and she would do it all with a smile on her face. Her family was her pride and joy above all else. She loved being a parent but especially being ”The Best Grandma”anyone could ever hope to have.
Betty will be deeply missed by her children: Larry (Gina) Tostrud, Jim (Denise) Tostrud, Lori (Mike) Biessener and Mike Tostrud; and by her grandchildren Travis, Jenny, Kyle, Aaron, Johnny, Spencer, Larry, Jessica, Cody and Lauren and by her great-grandchildren, Bella, Max, Ben, Alex, Isla, Leah, Kai, Mia, Adrian and Averie. She is further survived by her sister Joyce Olloff, as well as many families and friends who adored her. Betty is preceded in death by her husband, Jack Tostrud; daughters, Barb Clark and Mary Tostrud (in infancy); and her brothers, Duane Wolter, Charlie Drake and Richard Wolter.
A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, November 4, 2023. Further details to follow. The family would like to thank Dr. Joseph Paukner, PA-C Alyssa Ricchio and the special staff at their offices who treated Betty like their own family member, as well as the staff at Aurora Hospital for their wonderful care and compassion.
In the words of Maya Angelou…” People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Betty made everyone she met feel special. Give a smile to someone who could use one!