Grace Marie Guldan, age 86 of Hudson, WI, passed away June 8, 2022 at Our House Senior Living-River Falls Memory Care in River Falls, Wisconsin. Grace was born on May 28, 1936 in Connor, ME to Peter and Donalda (Morin) Gardner. Grace and her many siblings grew up and attended school in Caribou, ME. After high school she earned a teaching degree from Rivier College in Nashua, NH. Later in life, she would eventually earn a Master’s degree in education from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. Grace moved to live near her sister Pearl in South Milwaukee, where she met the love of her life at a catholic dance, John Guldan. The couple were married on November 26, 1966, and their union was blessed with two children, Peter and Pamela. The family eventually made their home in Hudson where Grace taught her children to be kind, gracious and selfless and worked as a teacher at St. Patrick’s School for many years. Grace and John also had a charitable spirit by welcoming into their home over 40 people including foster students, foreign exchange students and young adults. She and John owned and operated the Rainbow Shop, which was a Christian Bookstore in Hudson, and Grace also worked as a realtor. She returned to teaching and became a beloved substitute teacher in Hudson where she mostly taught middle school and junior high.
As a child growing up in the depression and often times going to bed hungry, Grace along with her husband John created the food shelf in Hudson. Thinking that there were more people in need that she could help in other ways, she started taking her station wagon around Hudson to the local grocery stores in town, getting some day-old bakery or other food items, and bringing it to local families in need to stretch their dollar. That work eventually became more organized to what is now called the Monday Mornings Food Giveaway.
Grace was very giving and generous, but never wanted to be recognized for the work she did. She possessed a kind and bubbly personality and had a love of hats, which she wore all the time. She volunteered as a greeter at her church and her delivery of “Hello! Welcome to St. Patrick’s” will be remembered by many. Grace, along with John also volunteered as a merit badge counselor for several different local Boy Scout troops, and aided hundreds of scouts to earn merit badges, and several to earn the rank of Eagle Scout-including her grandson Tommy. She enjoyed going fishing, but you must understand that her version of fishing consisted of her not putting the worm on the hook, her casting and reeling in the very small fish (the smaller the better) her not removing the fish from the hook, her not cleaning the fish, but her cooking and eating the fish – mostly sunfish, which she loved. Grace cherished spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren, had a fondness for dogs, hats and loved the people of St. Patrick’s dearly.
Grace will remain in the hearts of her husband, John; children, Peter (Katherine) Guldan and Pamela (Paul) Burke; grandchildren, Nova Grace and June Marie Guldan; and Thomas Francis Burke; her brother Conrad Gardner; and many nieces, nephews, foster children, foreign exchange students, young adults, and other relatives and friends. She is preceded in death by her parents and 8 siblings.
A Mass of Christian Burial to celebrate Grace’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, June 14, 2022 at the St. Patrick Catholic Church in Hudson, Wisconsin. A visitation will be held from 4:00-7:00 p.m., with a 6:45 p.m. prayer service on Monday, June 13 at the O’Connell Family Funeral Home in Hudson, Wisconsin. Prior to the mass on Tuesday, a rosary will be said at 9:45 a.m., with visitation from 10:00-11:00 a.m., both at the church. Grace’s funeral mass will be livestreamed through the St. Patrick Catholic Church Facebook page.
Grace’s family would like to thank the staff of Our House Senior Living-River Falls Memory Care for their wonderful care and support for Grace and John. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to the Hudson Food Shelf.