BARRE MILLS/NEILLSVILLE, Wis. — Dennis M. Koula, 68, and Merna J. Koula, 65, both of Barre Mills and formerly of Neillsville, who happily shared their lives together, tragically lost their lives together in May of 2010 in their home.

Dennis was born Nov. 17, 1941, in La Crosse to Milo and Eileen (Scharpf) Koula. Merna was born Nov. 6, 1944, in Iola, Wis., to Carl and Leola (Feathers) Preuss. On Dec. 16, 1967, they were married and together have celebrated over 42 years of marriage.  After serving in the U.S. Navy, Dennis graduated from University of Wisconsin-Madison, receiving a Pharmaceutical Degree before becoming a Board Certified Registered Pharmacist. Merna graduated from University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point before furthering her education at University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, receiving her Master's Degree in Physical Education. Dennis, along with his partner, Mike Moioffer, owned and operated various pharmacies in Wisconsin, where Merna worked with them prior to her substitute teaching in Neillsville and West Salem.  Dennis was a member of the Neillsville Lions Club and also Roy L. Vingers American Legion Post 52 of La Crosse. Merna was a city council member in Neillsville and was member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Dennis and Merna enjoyed being together traveling, attending musical concerts and theater productions, taking walks and gardening, but especially spending time with their grandchildren. Dennis will be remembered for his love of golf and for having a sweet tooth while Merna will be remembered for her love of flowers and birds.

Sadly left behind with broken hearts are their two children, Eric (Christine) Koula of West Salem and Cynthia (Patrick) Cowell of La Crosse; three grandchildren, Dexter, Hadley and Jossalyn; a stepgranddaughter, Kylie; Dennis’ sisters, Sally (Doug) Martin, Mary (Roger) Harring and Kathy (Tom) Hayner; Dennis’ brothers, Leroy “Pete” (Marlene) Koula and Gilbert “Gib” Koula (Dr. Janine Buffo); Merna’s sisters, Donna (Don) Cohee and Carol (Arthur) Schuelke; Merna’s brothers, Calvin (Jeri) Preuss and Larry (Kathy) Preuss; and numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and special friends who loved them dearly.

Funeral services for Dennis and Merna will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, June 3, at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, 359 N. Leonard St., West Salem. The Revs. J. David Bersagel and Melinda Melhus will officiate. Burial will be in Neshonoc Cemetery with military honors for Dennis to be performed by La Crosse American Legion Post 52 and the U.S. Navy Funeral Honor Guard.  Friends may call at the church on Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m. and also on Thursday from 10 a.m. until time of services.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred in order to establish an education fund for their grandchildren.

Jostad-Jandt Funeral Home of West Salem is in charge of arrangements.