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  • - Elaina Thomas
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Inventor & Business owner

LaVerne A. Antonson, inventor and business owner, resident of Gainesville, Florida, died October 5, 2012, in Forsythe Good Sheppard Hospice, Auburndale, Florida, after a short illness. She was 94.

Born LaVerne A. Thomas in Chicago, Illinois, she married Elmer F. Antonson, also an inventor, and jointly they initiated and introduced the first electric wrist watch, the Mail Alert, the concept of the wedding registry initially at Marshall Fields in Chicago, the Florida Tourist Tax, Spring Training for major league baseball in Florida, the electric toothbrush and the custom license plate that is now available throughout the United States.

Mrs. Antonson lived in McHenry Illinois, Gainesville and Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, and Williamsville, New York. She was a member of First Lutheran Church, Gainesville, Florida.

Mr. Antonson died in 2008 at the age of 92.

She is survived by 2 siblings, Audrey and Richard, 2 children, Karen Ludiker of Las Animas, Colorado and Donald E. Antonson, D.D.S., M.Ed., of Williamsville, New York, and 5 grandchildren, and 2 great grand children.

She owned various successful businesses in Illinois and Florida. She always cared for her family and made sure everyone was all right.

Services will be scheduled at a later time.

Published in Gainesville Sun from Oct. 9 to Oct. 10, 2012