Mary Jane (Maerz) Esser

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CROSS PLAINS–Mary Jane (Maerz) Esser, age 93, of Middleton, passed away on Nov. 12, 2020. She was born in Castle Rock on June 19, 1927, the daughter of Peter and Christina (Hying) Maerz. Mary Jane was united in marriage to Lawrence Esser on June 19, 1946, in Dane. Together Lawrence and Mary Jane bought the Esser family farm where they farmed and raised five children. Her husband, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were first priority in her life. Mary Jane loved flowers, and she planted and maintained several flower gardens on the farm. She also loved music. She played guitar, accordion and piano. She was a member of a small band and played at many establishments in western rural Wisconsin and local establishments. She entertained residents of the Black Earth and Lodi nursing homes as well.

Mary Jane is survived by four children, Ray (Mary) Esser of Verona, Diane (Butch) Transue of Stoughton, Ron Esser (Pam Hardy) of Waunakee and Richard Esser of Middleton; eight grandchildren, Tammie (Andy) Arbuckle of Belleville, Jamie Esser of Cross Plains, Brian (Melissa) Esser of Belleville, Nathan (Tanya) Esser of New Berlin, Benjamin Esser of Waunakee, and Zachary, Jenna and Jayden Esser of Waunakee; eight great-grandchildren, Hunter Haavind, Ryan and Aaron Arbuckle,  and Kyle, Kaylie, Kennedi, Thea and Layla Esser; sister and brother-in-law, Virginia (Edmund) Karls; and sister-in-law, Ruth Maerz. She is further survived by several nieces and nephews. Mary Jane was preceded in death by her husband, Lawrence; daughter, Marlene; her parents; brother, Ray Maerz; sisters, Cecelia and Dolores; grandson, Chad Esser; and several in-laws.

A private Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church. The family wishes to extend a very special thank you to Agrace HospiceCare for their compassionate support, enabling Mary Jane's wishes to spend her final moments at home surrounded by her family. Online condolences may be made at

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