Elaine Suzanne (Garrison) Mann, of Four Corners, passed away in her home Wednesday, Oct. 3, 2018, with her oldest granddaughter by her side.
Diagnosed three years ago with early stage lung cancer, she was adamant that she would live out her life in the home she built alongside her husband, John R. Mann, who died in 2010. She was born in Providence, R.I., nearly 67 years ago, to Robert and Margaret (Warner) Garrison, the second oldest of seven children; she was predeceased by her parents; her older sister, Linda; and younger, brother Kevin.
Elaine enlisted in the Army in 1969 and was stationed at NORAD, Ft. Carson, Colo., and Ft. Dix, N.J., as a stenographer. She met her husband, John, at Fort Carson and he told her the night he met her that he would marry her—they were married for over 39 years at his passing. They moved to Wisconsin in 1976 and she was a driving force in the establishment of Mann’s Lock and Key. Beyond that, she was always recognized as a quality employee, working at Jack Winters, Century Telephone, DNR, Manpower, Country Kitchen and Pizza Hut. Over the last 12 years, Elaine worked in many positions at the Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES//Ft. McCoy) and was widely respected and admired by her coworkers.
Elaine was an avid researcher, writer and problem solver who always found the answer and acted upon her newfound knowledge. She always had an entrepreneurial spirit and she and her husband were exploring the capabilities of the internet long before most knew what it was. She enjoyed gardening, reading and her pets. She was fearlessly tough and each time life presented, sometimes unfathomable circumstances, she would take a deep breath and forge a path forward. She was a diamond in the rough and always demonstrated how one ultimately benefits if you never quit.
She is survived by her sisters, Cathy Garrison Mason and Laurie Garrison; brothers, Glenn (Caroline) Garrison and Greg (Rosie) Garrison; daughters, Suzanne Bassette and Melody (Luke) Buhler; as well as her son, John (Jamie Martin) Mann; her grandsons, Christopher and Alex; and her granddaughters, Mikayla, Gloria and Madisynne; and two great-grandchildren, Xander and Chloe.
A celebration of life will be held 3 p.m. at her home, Oct. 14, and will include a military honors ceremony.
In lieu of flowers, a gift in honor of Elaine can be made to the Wounded Warriors Project. Coulee Region Cremation Group is assisting the family.