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Mr. and Mrs. Leroy F. Kumbier’s Wedding Photo

Ruth M. Krieser was married to Leroy F. Kumbier on January 20, 1946 at the First English Lutheran Church in Appleton, Wisconsin which was the church where Ruth was a member.  Leroy had served throughout the Pacific during the Second World War and when he was in Japan, he had found some beautiful Japanese silk material that he knew would make into a fabulous wedding gown.  It was woven in an exquisite jacquard pattern.  He purchased it in anticipation of his upcoming marriage to Ruth and sent it back home to Kimberly.  His mother, Sal Kumbier, was an excellent seamstress and Sal made the dress for Ruth.  It was terribly cold that winter, as Wisconsin winters often are in January, and they had an interesting challenge on their honeymoon.  The pipes froze up at the place where they were staying, and the radiator was clunking and banging away like crazy.  Many places used steam heat in those days and banging radiators were often just a part of that type of heating system.  It was probably a bit less romantic than they wold have liked, but with their wonderful sense of humor it became one of those family jokes that got passed down to the next generation.  When Leroy was in Japan, he had purchased a silk kimono for Ruth and also a small child’s kimono, so after their first child was born, their little girl, Sharon, also had a lovely silk kimono to wear.  In his generosity, he didn’t forget Ruth’s mother, Esther, either.  He sent a lovely set of Noritake china home for her and no doubt similar gifts to his mother.  He loved people and was always thinking of others.

LEFT TO RIGHT:  Carl F. Krieser, Ruth’s brother; Robert Kumbier, Leroy’s brother; Leroy and Ruth (Krieser) Kumbier; Annette Maes, Ruth’s and Carl’s cousin from Marion, Wisconsin; and Dorothy Mae Kraemer, Ruth’s best friend from Kimberly.  Ruth’s lovely gown is accentuated by her beautiful tiara and veil and also her delicate floral bouquet.

Mrs. Ruth Kumbier

The demographic makeup of Kimberly was most unusual.  The Kimberly Clark Corporation needed good workers for their mill and the Dutch people were noted for their industriousness.  The Catholic Church in Kimberly sponsored  the Dutch immigrants and the mill provided them with gainful employment, so it was a good arrangement for all concerned.  Because of this situation, the small community was over 90% Dutch Catholic at this time.  A small Protestant minority also lived there, often holding related jobs but not working directly for the mill.  At first, there was no Lutheran Church in Kimberly so the Kriesers went to Mount Olive Lutheran Church in Appleton.  Many of their friends went to the Presbyterian Church in Kimberly, so they later decided to attend there for a time.  They had an Open Road program similar to the Boy Scouts that introduced pioneering skills to Carl Junior.  When they did open a Lutheran church in Kimberly, the Kriesers attended for a while but because Carl Senior was a Mason, they wouldn’t allow him to join the congregation.  The rest of the family was welcome to join and he was welcome to contribute, but he could not be a member.  Carl Junior needed to start catechism classes in preparation for his confirmation, so they opted to go to the First English Lutheran Church in Appleton.  Bill Kumbier was the depot agent in Kimberly where Carl Krieser Senior worked.  Bill and his wife, Sal, were among the Krieser’s circle of friends in Kimberly.  Their son, Leroy, went to Kimberly High during the same time that Ruth was there.  Although Ruth and Leroy knew each other through these associations, they didn’t start dating until after high school, before Leroy went into the service during World War II.

UPPER LEFT:  Ruth was a lovely and radiant bride as she left her parents home in Kimberly to start a new life as Mrs. Leroy Kumbier.

LOWER LEFT:  Ruth stands in front of the First English Lutheran Church in Appleton with her attendants, Dorothy Mae Kraemer and Annette Maes.  Annette was her cousin as well as a friend.  The stately charm of the home across the street reflects the turn-of-the-century architecture that was common for that period in Appleton.

LOWER RIGHT:  Leroy and Ruth Kumbier are out shopping with their oldest daughter, Sharon, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Mr. & Mrs. Kumbier