Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Marilyn Mae Paulsen

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Marilyn M. Paulsen, aged 93, passed away in Scottsdale, Arizona, on March 22, 2024, surrounded by the love of her family. Marilyn was a long-time resident of Ironwood, Michigan. She spent the last 18 months living near her daughter, Michelle, in Scottsdale.

She was born on February 18, 1931, the daughter of Roy and Clara Martin in Milltown, Wisconsin. After her education in Milltown, Marilyn contributed to the defense industry in the Twin Cities before marrying Alvin Paulsen in 1952.

They started their family in Frederic, Wisconsin, where Alvin owned a funeral home. In 1968, they moved to Ironwood and purchased Nyberg Miller Funeral Home and together owned and operated the Nyberg Miller Paulsen Mortuary for more than four decades.

While raising two boys and a daughter and helping Alvin with the funeral home, Marilyn went back to school at Gogebic Community College and earned her LPN license. Her compassionate nature led her to a nursing position for many years at the Villa Maria nursing facility. She was also an active member of Salem Lutheran Church and Eastern Star.

Anyone who knew Marilyn was impressed by her talent, generosity, willingness to pitch in and help, and positive attitude. She could do anything and do it well: whether it was painting, quilting, knitting, sewing, carpentry, gardening, canning, writing clever cards, or even dabbling in acting with Theatre North in the 1970s. She never found the need to criticize others and had the unique ability to make others feel better in whatever they were dealing with. Marilyn exemplified the values and work ethic of her upbringing on a small rural farm with strong and loving parents and siblings.

She was preceded in death by her parents; two sisters, Ina and Irma; and husband, Alvin, who passed away in 2020.

She is survived by her two sons, Greg Paulsen of Ironwood, and Scott (Marlene) Paulsen of New Brighton, Minnesota; daughter, Michelle (Jose) Cruz of Cave Creek, Arizona; and brother-in-law, Brian Paulsen of Alva, Florida. She also had six grandchildren: Kristin, Justin, Nara, Emma, Nick and Alyssa; three great-grandchildren: Geneva, Rhiya and Arthur; and one great-great-granddaughter, Jessalyn. She is also survived by her constant companion and loyal dog, Lucy, who accompanied her to Arizona.

A family memorial service will be held this summer at Saint Peter's Lutheran Cemetery in Luck, Wisconsin.

Memorial contributions may be directed to Salem Lutheran Church's altar guild and Salem Quilters in honor of her enduring spirit.

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