Rachel E. Studt, June 12, 1967 - January 7, 2021

Rachel E. Studt
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Rachel Ellen Studt was freed from a rare form of young onset dementia, Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, on January 7, 2021 at the age of 53.

She was born June 12, 1967 to Duane and Joy (Smith) Braaten in Seattle, Washington.  Her family moved to Mankato, MN where Rachel grew up and graduated from Mankato West High School in 1985.  Rachel graduated from Luther College in 1989 with honors with a degree in teaching.  Later, she attended the University of Iowa graduating with a Master’s Degree in Library Science.  Rachel’s passion was children’s literature.  She was a children’s librarian at the Gail Borden Library in Elgin, Illinois until marrying Larry on May 21, 1994 in Mankato, MN.  Rachel became a full-time homemaker raising three children: Claire, Laurel, and Nathan.  Rachel will be remembered for her piano playing and accompanying skills, singing in numerous choirs, her bell ringing with Trinity Tollers, her organizational skills, the love of her family, the love of being outside, her skillful card playing, her friendships with so many, volunteering for many things, her courageous fight with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, and so much more. 

She is survived by her husband Larry and their children Claire, Laurel, and Nathan; mother, Joy Braaten (Mankato, MN); sister, Erika (Rob) Allen, and their children Connor and Annika.  She was preceded in death by her father, Duane, grandparents Ole and Eva (Johnson) Braaten and Bernard and Doris (Grimm) Smith.

A small, private service will be held at 1:30, on Saturday, January 30, 2021 at Hulke Funeral Home in Eau Claire, WI followed by a gravesite gathering.  The service will be live-streamed.  When the pandemic is no longer a factor, there will be a celebration of Rachel’s life where there will be singing, fellowship, and remembrance, as Rachel wanted when she planned her funeral in March of 2020.  The service will be livestreamed and can be accessed by clicking here (x).

The family would like to thank her team of doctors and providers, Dr. Binu Philip, Dr. Jon Konzen, Meg McCabe-Schultz APNP, Dr. Kidess, Dr. Caporusso, Linda Odness CCC-SLP, Shannon Birkholz DPT, Jenna Goebel, the staff of Grace Woodlands Memory Care, Toni from Visiting Angels, the staff at the Eau Claire County Aging Disability and Resource Center (ADRC), Inclusa, and so many others that have assisted Rachel and our family over the years.

Per family wishes, memorials may be made in memory of Rachel to the L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library’s “Storybuilder Capital Campaign Fund” at the Eau Claire Community Foundation (ECCF), 306 S. Barstow St. Suite 104, Eau Claire, WI 54701 or donate online at https://eccfwi.org/memorial/in-memoriam-rachel-e-studt/ 

Hulke Family Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 3209 Rudolph Road, Eau Claire, WI 54701 is assisting the family with the arrangements.  


  1. Kathy Grinsel January 17, 2021

    My husband died as a result of a long struggle with PSP. I know your pain. Please accept my condolences. So young. May you all find strength in each other.

  2. Michelle Messer January 17, 2021

    Our heartfelt sympathy and prayers. So sorry for your loss. God Bless you & your family.
    The Messer Family

  3. Kent, Valerie, Andrew and Arianna Smith January 15, 2021

    Our family just wanted to send our sincere condolences to all of you. It was such a sad shock to see this news and our hearts go out to all of you. Rachel was such a beautiful person inside and out who radiated love and warmth. It was a joy to hear her play the piano at school events. She surely left an amazing lasting legacy in Claire, Laurel and Nathan. We will keep you all in our thoughts and prayers.

  4. Pamela Guthman January 12, 2021

    Larry and All,
    My deepest sympathy, thoughts and prayers as you supported Rachel's journey through so many ups and downs these last few years. May there be peace and comfort during the days ahead to support your journey in the days ahead. Pamela Guthman

  5. Sarah Donnellan January 12, 2021

    I am so sorry to hear of your loss. May you all find peace in your memories and comfort in the love your family has shared with Rachel in her lifetime. And may God hold you all close as you navigate this difficult journey.
    Sarah Donnellan

  6. Gene & Karen Grimm January 12, 2021

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you all during this time of challenge.

  7. Duane Grimm January 12, 2021

    We are so sorry for your loss. Our sincere condolences. May you find hope and means to happiness.

    Allison & Duane Grimm

  8. Lisa Stewart January 12, 2021

    I did not have the pleasure of knowing Rachel, but I do know her daughter Claire very well because I'm a professor in the MSUMoorhead School Psych program where Claire is finishing up her graduate studies. I just wanted to let Claire and the whole family know that it has been a blessing and inspiration to learn more about Rachel and her love of music, children's literature, and her family. Blessed be her memory. Her legacy clearly lives on in the work and life of Claire.

  9. Sarah Robertson January 12, 2021

    Larry and family,
    It's been a heartbreaking journey for Rachel, and for all of you. I know you'll continue to be sustained by your faith and comforted by the love that surrounds you. I have many fond memories and feel blessed to have had such great neighbors for so many years.
    Peace to you,

  10. Alan Braaten January 11, 2021

    So very sorry to hear of Rachel’s passing, but comforting to know that her suffering is over. It has been many years since I saw her, but fond memories of our times together at Grandma and Grandpa’s in the Summer while growing up.

  11. Bill and Mary-Kell Cayley January 11, 2021

    Larry and Family,
    We are thinking of you at this time and praying that you will find peace and comfort in the days ahead. She was a beautiful person and we were fortunate to know you in Garden Park.
    Bill and Mary-Kell Cayley

  12. Bill Cayley January 10, 2021

    So sorry! You are in our thoughts and prayers

  13. Suzie Twite January 9, 2021

    We were so sorry to hear of Rachel's passing. We always enjoyed her company at the boys basketball games and at church. Our thoughts and prayers are with your family at this time of sorrow. Twite Family

  14. Greg Darrow January 9, 2021

    Rachel's cheerful attitude and ringing laugh would immediately brighten any room. That she has been taken away so soon is so unfair. Wishing the family peace at this difficult time.

  15. JoAnn Forster January 8, 2021

    We were so sorry to hear of Rachel’s passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of you!

    Chuck and JoAnn Forster