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Obituaries


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Jane Louise Watko D.D.S.

Died: Tuesday, April 03, 2012
Age: 58
Jane Louise Watko, 58, of Grand Rapids, died Tuesday, April 3, 2012, of breast cancer.

She was born Aug. 25, 1953, in Bon Secours Hospital to Joanne (nee Sweeney) and Dr. Edward S. Watko. Her childhood was spent with brother Edward, “Ed,” and sister, Patricia, “Trish,” in St. Clair Shores and Grosse Pointe Woods. She was a graduate of St. Lucy Catholic grade school, attended Dominican High School and graduated from Grosse Pointe North High School in 1971.

Dr. Watko graduated from University of Detroit dental school and did post graduate work at the University of Rochester. Upon completing the post graduate work, she worked in her practice in the Detroit area until 2008. At that time she took a position with the State of Michigan providing dental services in the reform system in west central Michigan.

Dr. Watko enjoyed spending time at the family cottage with her sister, nephew, niece and other family members. She was an active member in the Word of Faith Christian Center in Grand Rapids and was looking forward to a church organized ministry trip to provide dental services to the needy in Ghana. She also enjoyed singing in the church choir and she completed, with honors, Bible Training Institute School of Ministry in June 2010.

Dr. Watko is survived by her parents, Joanne and Edward; brother, Edward and wife, Cindy; sister, Patricia; niece, Heather Allen, her husband, Jason, and their children, Trent and Mack and nephew, Paul Watko, his wife, Gretchen, and their children, Jack, Maddie and George.

Donations may be made to Word of Faith Christian Center Grand Rapids, 3030 Eastern Ave. S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49508 or The Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation at komen.org.

Jane Louise Watko D.D.S.

Died: Tuesday, April 03, 2012
Age: 58
Jane Louise Watko, 58, of Grand Rapids, died Tuesday, April 3, 2012, of breast cancer.

She was born Aug. 25, 1953, in Bon Secours Hospital to Joanne (nee Sweeney) and Dr. Edward S. Watko. Her childhood was spent with brother Edward, “Ed,” and sister, Patricia, “Trish,” in St. Clair Shores and Grosse Pointe Woods. She was a graduate of St. Lucy Catholic grade school, attended Dominican High School and graduated from Grosse Pointe North High School in 1971.

Dr. Watko graduated from University of Detroit School of Dentistry and did post graduate work at the University of Rochester. Upon completing the post graduate work, she worked in her practice in the Detroit area until 2008. At that time she took a position with the State of Michigan providing dental services in the reform system in west central Michigan.

Dr. Watko enjoyed spending time at the family cottage with her sister, nephew, niece and other family members. She was an active member in the Word of Faith Christian Center in Grand Rapids and was looking forward to a church-organized ministry trip to provide dental services to the needy in Ghana. She also enjoyed singing in the church choir and she completed, with honors, Bible Training Institute School of Ministry in June 2010.

Dr. Watko is survived by her parents, Joanne and Edward; brother, Edward and wife, Cindy; sister, Patricia; niece, Heather Allen, her husband, Jason, and their children, Trent and Mack and nephew, Paul Watko, his wife, Gretchen, and their children, Jack, Maddie and George.

Donations may be made to Word of Faith Christian Center Grand Rapids, 3030 Eastern Ave. S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49508 or The Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation at komen.org.

Patricia Anne Rohn

Died: Monday, April 02, 2012
Age: 60
Patricia Anne Rohn, 60, passed away peacefully Monday, April 2, 2012, at St. John Hospital and Medical Center in Detroit.

She was born May 24, 1951, to Fred and Geraldine Rohn. She graduated from Grosse Pointe High School in 1969 and with honors from Central Michigan University. She earned a master’s degree in special education from the University of Detroit.

Ms. Rohn enjoyed doing needlework. She taught classes in the art and had several booklets on stitches and projects published. Her family said she was a born teacher and will be greatly missed by her students and family.

A private funeral service was held at the Christ Church Grosse Pointe Columbarium.

Ms. Rohn is survived by her mother, Geraldine Rohn; brother, Fred A. Rohn III and sister, Joanne Stansberry.

She was predeceased by her father, Fred Rohn.

Donations may be made to the charity of the donor’s choice.

Betty Virginia Trentacoste

Died: Sunday, April 01, 2012
Age: 91
Grosse Pointe Woods resident Betty Virginia Trentacoste, nee Noble, 91, passed away Sunday, April 1, 2012.

She was born Aug. 7, 1920, in Detroit, to Claude and Florence Noble. With her husband she built a happy, flourishing family life filled with extensive world travel, recreation and Catholic devotion.

Mrs. Trentacoste loved boating and was a lifetime member of the Detroit Yacht Club. She enjoyed golf, bowling, cards and was talented and generous with her many craft projects. Her family said above all, she cherished family and through the years, especially at holidays, became a magnet for countless friends and relatives drawn by the warmth, festivities and laughter that filled her home.

Mrs. Trentacoste is survived by her children, Richard (Gail) and Holly (Peter); six grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren and dozens of nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Ben; son, David (the late Susan) and brother, George (the late Mary) Noble.

A funeral was held April 3 at Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Grosse Pointe Woods.

Donations may be made to the American Lung Association, 25900 Greenfield Road, Suite 401, Oak Park, MI 48237.

Thomas Mathew Fitzsimons

Died: Sunday, April 01, 2012
Age: 76
Thomas Mathew Fitzsimons, 76, passed away unexpectedly Sunday, April 1, 2012. Although it was a massive heart attack that brought him to the hospital on March 30, he died peacefully surrounded by the people he loved — his family: Valerie; his daughter, Serena Fitzsimons Peterson and his young children, Patrick and Mary Kathryn Fitzsimons. He also is survived by his twin sister, Mary Kirchner of Atlanta; sister, Ann Gotfredson (Robert) of LaJolla, Calif.; grandchildren, Zoe and Jacob Peterson of Huntington Woods, and many nieces and nephews who loved Tom’s sparkling blue eyes and wonderful wit.

His family said Mr. Fitzsimons was an eternal optimist who approached life with humor and a sense of tomfoolery. They said he loved everybody and everybody loved him.

He was a devout Catholic and had a strong Catholic education at University of Detroit, Marmion Military Academy in LaGrange, Ill., and the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, from which he graduated. After a brief stint in the U.S. Marine Corps, he had a successful career as a manufacturer’s representative.

Mr. Fitzsimons loved sailing and participated in 20 Mackinac races on his yachts, “Seewolf” I & II. He was proud of his Irish heritage and celebrated St. Patrick’s Day every year with a grand party at his house.

A funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 14, at St. Paul on the Lake Catholic Church, 157 Lakeshore, Grosse Pointe Farms.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Fitzsimons Children’s Educational Fund, c/o St. Paul on the Lake Catholic School, 170 Grosse Pointe Blvd., Grosse Pointe Farms, MI 48236.

Jack C. Younke

Died: Sunday, April 01, 2012
Age: 84
Grosse Pointe Woods resident Jack C. Younke, 84, died Sunday, April 1, 2012, at Sunrise on Vernier.

He was born May 12, 1927, in Detroit, to Charles and Amanda (nee Schroeder) Younke and graduated from Eastern High School and the University of Detroit School of Business. He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, attaining the rank of sergeant.

Mr. Younke was a supervisor in the accounting department at Aetna, Penn Mutual and Marsh & McLennan Insurance Co., where he advanced to assistant vice president of office management and human resources.

“Uncle Jack” was a counselor and mentor to many young people and was a volunteer at Monteith Elementary School. He served on several committees for the Grosse Pointe Public School System.

Mr. Younke was a life-long member of the Lutheran Church, first at Holy Trinity in Detroit and for the last 40 years, at Peace Lutheran in Detroit. He was chairman of the board of deacons and served on the Peace board of directors. He was a collector, gardener, flower arranger and did beautiful stitchery.

His family said he shared his love for people and God with the patients and caregivers at Sunrise during his illness.

Mr. Younke is survived by his wife of 51 years, Mary Reinhard Younke.

A funeral service was held Wednesday, April 4, at Peace Lutheran Church. Interment is in Elmwood Cemetery.

Donations may be made to Peace Lutheran Church, 15700 E. Warren, Detroit, MI 48224 or to Peace Food Bank, 15770 E. Warren, Detroit, MI 48224.

Jack C. Younke

Died: Sunday, April 01, 2012
Age: 84
Grosse Pointe Woods resident Jack C. Younke, 84, died Sunday, April 1, 2012, at Sunrise on Vernier.

He was born May 12, 1927, in Detroit, to Charles and Amanda (nee Schroeder) Younke and graduated from Eastern High School and the University of Detroit School of Business. He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, attaining the rank of sergeant.

Mr. Younke was a supervisor in the accounting department at Aetna, Penn Mutual and Marsh & McLennan Insurance Co., where he advanced to assistant vice president of office management and human resources.

“Uncle Jack” was a counselor and mentor to many young people and was a volunteer at Monteith Elementary School. He served on several committees for the Grosse Pointe Public School System.

Mr. Younke was a life-long member of the Lutheran church, first at Holy Trinity in Detroit, and for the last 40 years, at Peace Lutheran in Detroit. He was chairman of the board of deacons and served on the Peace board of directors. He was a collector, gardener, flower arranger and did beautiful stitchery.

His family said he shared his love for people and God with the patients and caregivers at Sunrise during his illness.

Mr. Younke is survived by his wife of 51 years, Mary Reinhard Younke.

A funeral service was held Wednesday, April 4, at Peace Lutheran Church. Interment is in Elmwood Cemetery.

Donations may be made to Peace Lutheran Church, 15700 E. Warren, Detroit, MI 48224 or to Peace Food Bank, 15770 E. Warren, Detroit, MI 48224.

Stephanie Petri Lord

Died: Saturday, March 31, 2012
Age: 65
Stephanie Petri Lord, 65, passed away peacefully Saturday, March 31, 2012, at her home in Ann Arbor.

She was born Jan. 4, 1947, in Detroit to Henry and Avalo Petri. She grew up in Grosse Pointe Farms where she met and married her husband of 42 years, Richard Stanton Lord. They moved to Ann Arbor in 1973 where they raised three children and where Mrs. Lord became well known as the creative force behind many charity events and local theatrical productions.

Her family said Mrs. Lord will be remembered for her laughter, sense of humor, immense love for people and animals, deep faith in God, and her yodel, often performed while driving away from a friend’s house or from the top of a ski hill. Many will miss her frequent deliveries of delicious confections, but her memory lives on through recipes shared far and wide.

Mrs. Lord is survived by her husband, Richard S. Lord; children, Hadley, Heather, Henry and daughter-in-law, Rachel; sister, Pamela P. Humphrey and brother-in-law, John W. Humphrey and her nieces, Victoria, Joanna and Caroline.

A celebration of her life will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday, April 10, at First Presbyterian Church, 1432 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor. Brightly colored attire is encouraged.

Donations may be made to First Church of Christ Scientist, 1833 Washtenaw Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48104, or the Humane Society of Huron Valley, 3100 Cherry Hill Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48105.

Paula Weldon

Died: Friday, March 30, 2012
Paula Weldon, died Friday, March 30, 2012, at Angela Hospice in Livonia.

She was born in Chattanooga, Tenn., and was the vice president and relocation director for CENTURY 21 Curran & Christie real estate company in Dearborn.

Previously, she worked as a flight attendant for Eastern Airlines, was a professional model with Jacobsons & Muirhead, for the Dearborn Press & Guide and as a private adoption specialist with the Keane Law Firm.

Mrs. Weldon was appointed to the City of Dearborn’s City Beautiful Commission in 2000 and 2003; was a major fund raiser and supporter of Child’s Hope Hopes and Dreams “Girls Night Out” and the Silver Liner which provided a trip to the North Pole for terminally ill children; the Dearborn Symphony, Dearborn Friends of the Shelter, and closest to her heart, Oakwood Hospital’s Center for Exceptional Families.

She also was a longtime member of the Dearborn Country Club.

Mrs. Weldon is survived by her loving husband, Winfred; children, Michael (Kate) Rogula and Michelle (Mark) Waranoski; stepchildren, Stephen Weldon, Gregory (Anita) Weldon, Thomas J. Weldon, Mark (Jill) Weldon, Victoria Weldon and Lisa (Dave) Mobus; eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

A funeral Mass was celebrated Monday, April 2, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Dearborn.

Donations may be made to the Oakwood Center for Exceptional Families, Oakwood Healthcare Foundation, 15500 Lundy Parkway, Dearborn, MI 48126 or to the charity of the donor’s choice.

Ray J. Lynch

Died: Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Ray J. Lynch, of Grosse Pointe Farms and Naples, Fla., passed away in late March in Naples. He was the retired vice chairman of American Natural Resources Company and president of Michigan Wisconsin Pipe Line Co.

A memorial Mass will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 16, at Nativity of Our Lord Catholic Church, 5900 McClellan St., Detroit. The family will receive visitors beginning at 10:30 a.m. at the church.

Mr. Lynch is survived by Leila, his wife of 63 years; nine of the couple’s 12 children, Dawn Rassel (Richard), Mary Joy Lynch, Cheryl Nilsson (Mark), Tim Lynch (Claudia), Jane Lynch, Martha Lynch-Biasi (Gerry), Christopher Lynch (Elizabeth), John Lynch (Kathleen) and Robert Lynch (Terry); 29 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Mr. Lynch was predeceased by his sons, Joseph, Thomas and Daniel.

Donations may be made to Holy Cross Children’s Services Foundation, 8759 Clinton-Macon Road, Clinton, MI 49236.

Express condolences at desmondfuneralhome.com.
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