Saturday, October 15, 2016


Opal Catherine Cardinal, 86, of Medford, passed away Saturday October 15, 2016, two days before her 87th birthday, at Aspirus Care and Rehab of Medford, under the loving care of her family, friends, and Hope Hospice and Palliative Care.

Funeral services for Opal will be held at 11:00 AM, Wednesday October 19, 2016 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Medford, with Pastor Brian Mundt officiating. Burial will take place at 4:00 PM, Wednesday October 19 in Mt. Repose Cemetery in Friendship, WI, where she will be laid to rest next to her sons, Earl and Jerry Leach. Serving honorably as pallbearers are: Bryan Leach, Jeremy Brunner, Kyle Firnstahl, Tyler Firnstahl, Jake Beilfuss, and Lonnie Nelson. Visitation will be held Tuesday October 18, from 4:00 – 7:00 PM, at Hemer Funeral Home, Medford Chapel, and also Wednesday at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church from 9:00 until the time of service at 11:00.

Opal was born October 17, 1929 in Big Flats, WI, one of 12 children, to the late Earl and Iva Murray.

Opal was a full time housewife and mother. Her world revolved around her children and grandchildren. A lot of her time was spent caring for two sons born with Muscular Dystrophy who were wheelchair bound their entire lives. A determined woman, she made many trips to the Children’s Hospital in Madison, and also participated in many Jerry Lewis telethons. Opal loved country music, especially the oldies but goodies. She will be remembered for making the best cinnamon rolls in all of Taylor County. She loved to go to garage sales, she loved buying clothes for her family, although they may have been the wrong size or the wrong color, if the price was right, it was purchased. She lived in many different places throughout Wisconsin. She moved from the farm near Marshfield to Altoona to be close to a school for her handicapped sons. She later moved to the Withee Area on County Highway T, and then moved to Medford.

After several failed marriages, she met the love of her life Lawrence Cardinal. They were married December 4, 1976.

Opal is survived by her children; Bonnie (Bruce) Brunner of Medford, Arliegh Leach of Eau Claire, and LeRoy (Carin) Leach of Mauston, and seven step children, Grandchildren; Cathy (Jake) Beilfuss, of Medford, Carol (Lonnie) Nelson of Colby, Jeremy (Jennifer) Brunner of Owen, Bryan Leach of Eau Claire, Katie Spencer of Wytheville, VA, Josh and Nicole Leach of Mauston, Great Grandchildren; Kyle, Tyler, Brittney, Amanda, Jessica, Bobbi, Veronica, Nathan, Megan, Matthew, Brandon, Zoie, Lillian, Great Great Grandchildren; Addison, Khloie, Carter, Kya, Kentley, and Harper. She is further survived by two brothers; Arleigh (Ann) Murray of Eden, and Donald Murray of Berlin, and many nieces and nephews, other relatives and friends.

Opal was preceded in death by her Parents, all of her sisters and brothers, except two, two children, and her husband.

In lieu of flowers, Opals family requests Memorial Donations be given to the family for designation at later date.

Hemer Funeral Service of Medford and Rib Lake has been entrusted with arrangements. Online condolences can be left at