Debra Kay Busse, 68 years old, of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, passed away on Saturday, June 25, 2021 of Cholangiocarcinoma in Eau Claire. She was born on March 30, 1953 in Crystal Falls, Michigan, the daughter of George and Ruth Gruell, farmers of Florence, Wisconsin. She married Carl James Busse on August 12, 1978 at St. Paul WELS Church in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Debbie was known to her family as “the white tornado” due to her propensity for cleaning. Whether you just got out a spoon to eat cereal or dish up some ice cream, it would be washed, dried, and put away before you could turn around with the carton in hand. Due to her self-sacrificing and caretaking nature, no flatware was safe.

She had a very special ability as a seamstress to produce literally anything so that it appeared to be made professionally…except the time she sewed her daughter’s pants leg shut, which she didn’t realize until she saw her daughter hopping around on one foot trying to get them on.

She always brought a positive energy into the room with her, and was generous with beaming smiles, warm hugs. With her family she would play with your hair and gently tickle your arm or back. She treated animals like family to the point that her dog, Missy, sat at the dinner table and held hands with her and the grandchildren to pray. She loved her grand-dogs like children.

Her faith in God was her life…she said she dreamed of marrying a pastor. And so she did. She faithfully attended church every Sunday and bribed her children with gum to sit still. She loved hymns, and her family spent her last moments singing her favorites to her, playing with her hair, and gently tickling her arm.

Debbie is survived by her spouse Pastor Carl Busse; daughters Tarah Schoell, Kita Busse and Kat Busse; grandchildren Tatyana Schoell, Lillian Schoell, Jesse Spiess and Mikaila Spiess; nieces Julie Eichmann and Rachel Shoemaker; nephews Bryan Eichmann, Josh Anderson, cousin Sandra Tasma, and Aunt Dolores Yahr.

She was preceded in death by her brothers Phillip and Adrian Gruell and her sister Marie Eichman.

A Memorial Service is scheduled for July 10, 2021, 10:30 a.m. at Concordia ELS Church on London Road, Eau Claire, WI. Reverend Aaron Hamilton will officiate. Memorials and condolences may also be offered at the Busse residence, 2850 Abbe Hill Drive, Eau Claire, WI 54703.

Another Memorial Service will be held at St. Paul WELS Church in Green Bay, WI on a date yet to be determined.

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