A Family Funeral Home

Mary Lou Schuler

October 25, 1933 - August 2, 2021
Racine, WI



Saturday, August 14, 2021
3:00 PM CDT
First Presbyterian Church
716 College Avenue
Racine, WI 53403

Life Story / Obituary


Mary Louise Carlisle Schuler, 87, died peacefully at home in Racine on August 2 after several months of illness. She was born in Mooresville, Indiana on October 25, 1933 to Milford and Eleanor Carlisle, the youngest of their four children. Her family operated the Carlisle and Son funeral home for four generations. After graduating from Mooresville High School in 1951 she attended Purdue University, where she met Paul Schuler, of Munster, Indiana. They married at the First Methodist Church in Mooresville on October 16, 1955, soon after graduating. Mary Lou later earned a master’s degree in education from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. She taught elementary school in Selma, Indiana; Hampton, Virginia; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Glendale, Wisconsin.

In 1960 Paul began working for S.C. Johnson, so they moved to Racine, where they remained except for a five-year stint in the Netherlands. Mary Lou ceased teaching to focus on raising her children and on volunteer work. At the First Presbyterian Church she held almost every lay position over more than 50 years of membership. She was also active, often in leadership positions, in the Racine Community Foundation; Racine Area United Way; Junior League; P.E.O. Sisterhood; Alpha Chi Omega; St. Luke’s Hospital; YWCA; and other organizations. Always very sociable, it seemed that wherever she went in Racine there was someone she knew. She was an avid reader and bridge player, and enjoyed golf, swimming, and walking until heart problems afflicted her a couple of years ago.

After working at S.C. Johnson, Paul owned Nelson Brothers & Strom, a machine shop, from 1978 until retiring in 1992. Mary Lou occasionally filled in there at the office. Paul died in 2001. Mary Lou is survived by a sister, Marjorie Smeltzer, of Brewster, Massachusetts; her children Kurt (Janet Sater), of Arlington, Virginia; Amy, of New York City; Adam (Karyn), of La Grange, Illinois; and four grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at the First Presbyterian Church, 716 College Avenue, Racine, on Saturday, August 14 at 3 p.m. Unvaccinated attendees are requested to wear masks. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Racine Community Foundation; United Way of Racine County; Health Care Network, Racine; or First Presbyterian Church Foundation. The family thanks Mary Lou’s home hospice caregivers from Compassus and her longer-term helper Adrianna.