Emmett Anthony Berken
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Emmett A. Berken, 91, Little Chute, was born to eternal life on Friday, November 15, 2013, surrounded by his wife and family in the home he built 60 years ago. Emmett was born October 14, 1922, in Wrightstown, son of Hubert "Al" and Virginia (Milton) Berken. On September 16, 1950, Emmett and Rita Emons were united in marriage at Holy Angels Church. They recently celebrated 63 years of marriage.
An Army veteran of WWII, he served in the Philippines on the Islands of Guadalcanal, Liyte and Cebu. He was proud to have been on the Inaugural Flight of the Upper Peninsula Honor Flight accompanied by his daughters and grandson. Emmett was employed by Oudenhoven Construction Company until the 1950's when he became a partner in Little Chute Bottling Company, with his brother, Jerry and brother-in-law, Ed Spierings. After retiring from the Bottling Company, he worked part-time at Larry's Piggly Wiggly.
Emmett was a member of the Wrightstown Urban Klister Post #436 for 66 years. He was a Past Commander and was instrumental in the building of the clubhouse. He was a retired volunteer of the Little Chute Fire Department and a faithful volunteer at the Salvatorian Mission Warehouse, New Holstein for 25 years. Emmett was an active member of St. John Parish, where he served as an usher for over 50 years.
Vacations, bowling and playing sheepshead with family and friends were activities he enjoyed and looked forward to.
Survivors include his wife, Rita; daughters: Barbara (Lee) Van Rooy, Kathleen (Dan) McNelly, and Mary (Nick) Demerath; son, Robert (Kathryn) Berken; grandchildren: Amy (Dave) Szymanski, Dr. David (Ani) Van Rooy, Dr. Bethany (Chris) Campbell, Emily (Ben) Lang, Stephen and Marissa McNelly; Dominic, James, Jordan and Kevin Demerath; Rob, Heather, Katelyn and Daniel Berken; great grandchildren: Griffin, Owen and Grayson Lang, Ana and Ella Van Rooy and Ashlyn and Grant Szymanski; a sister: Bernice (Gerald) Bruecker; a brother: Dale (Mary) Berken; sisters-in-law: Verna and Lorraine Berken and Olive Emons and many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his brothers: Gordon, Lloyd and Gerald; sisters: Marjorie Spierings and Evelyn Kuepper; brothers- and sisters-in-law: Ed and Dorothy Spierings, Jerome Kuepper, Blanche Berken and Harold Emons.
Funeral services will be held at 5:30 p.m. Monday, November 18, 2013, at St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church, 323 S Pine Street, Little Chute with Fr. Ron Belitz officiating. Interment will be in St. John Cemetery. Visitation will be from 2:00 p.m. Monday at the church until the time of the Mass. In lieu of flowers, the family has set up a memorial fund in Emmett's memory.
The family would like to thank Dr. Graunke and the entire staff at Kaukauna Clinic for their understanding, care and kindness extended to their family. We would also like to thank Fr. Ron Belitz for his support during this time.
As a husband, dad, grampa and grampa great, he has shown us how to live life and created many wonderful memories which will forever remain in our hearts.
Verkuilen-Van Deurzen Family Funeral Home
101 Canal Street Little Chute, WI 54140
Published in Appleton Post-Crescent on Nov. 17, 2013