Noel Claire Wilcox, of Wautoma, passed away peacefully on Saturday, April 18, 2020 at the home of Jane Reepsdorf, Noel’s caretaker and a dear family friend who is like a sister. Noel was born January 7, 1967 in Wautoma to the late Forest Averd and Elizabeth Pearl (Smith) Wilcox. Noel was always proud of the fact that she was the New Year’s Baby and liked to tell everyone she was “The First Noel”.
Although Noel had completed twelfth grade in 1986, she was allowed to remain in school until she turned 21 and she formally graduated from Wautoma High School in 1988. After graduation, Noel worked at Waushara Industries for several years before she decided to stay at home and help her parents as they got older. Noel participated in Special Olympics, was a member of the choir at Grace United Methodist Church, volunteered for Habitat for Humanity and later did volunteer work at the Waushara County Historical Society for 10+ years doing typing, filing and going through old court records. She enjoyed going out to eat with her parents and family and would usually see a friend or someone she knew and would stop to chat with them. To Noel there were no strangers, just people she hadn’t met yet.
Noel loved listening to music, singing Karaoke, especially The Rose, watching The Wizard of Oz and dancing. She looked forward to the annual Special Industries holiday parties where she could dance the night away with her friends and especially enjoyed getting dressed up for the Special Needs Prom where she had the honor of being chosen as the Queen twice. She was adept at remembering names, people and their relationships. She loved keeping in touch with everyone and making them feel better by making a phone call or sending out letters and cards and the mailman always said Noel was his best customer.
Noel is survived by her brothers and sisters: Paul (Janis) Wilcox, Jeanone Wilcox (fiancé Paul Karlen), Lynn (Sun Yong) Wilcox, Holly (Mark) Dahlke; 8 nieces and nephews: Andrea (Jeff) Kleczka, Jennifer (John) Engel, Heidi Dahlke, Curtis (Melissa) Wilcox, Melissa Dahlke, Carrie Dahlke, Daniel Wilcox and Brenda Wilcox and 15 great nieces and nephews: Brittani (Doug) Mayhugh, Destiny Dahlke, Jasmine Cardone, Abigail Dahlke-Raymond, Aidin Dahlke-Raymond, Jared Kleczka, Justin Kleczka, Kathryn Kleczka, Grace Wilcox, Brodyn Wilcox, Rhiannon Elendt, Timothy Elendt, Andrew Engel, Natalie Engel and Lewis Wilcox. She is further survived by her two aunts: Shirley Patzwald and Delores Wilcox; and uncle: Marlyn Wilcox, and many other relatives and friends. Noel was preceded in death by her parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and her great nephew: Oliver Forest Wilcox.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic only a private family visitation and burial service will be held. She will be laid to rest next to her parents at Maple Grove Cemetery, Town of Dakota. A memorial service will be held later this year.
In lieu of flowers, memorials to Alzheimer’s Disease in Down Syndrome Research Fund –112440040 (SEE BELOW) or to your favorite charity are appreciated.