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Genevieve Grace Koenig

Koenig, Genevieve Grace Age 99. Formerly of La Crosse, WI, died at Alexian Village, Milwaukee, WI on December 18, 2012. She was born on November 17, 1913, in Aberdeen, South Dakota to the late Henry and Emeline (Ott) Sherman. She graduated as class valedictorian from La Crosse Central High School, earned undergraduate degrees in English and Latin from La Crosse State Teachers College and earned a master's degree in English from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. On November 9, 1945, she married J. Robert Koenig at the St. Joseph the Workman Cathedral in La Crosse. An unfinished autobiographical piece was left behind, which Gen entitled "Past Perfect", indicative of her time spent as a Latin teacher as well as her positive attitude toward life. "Mrs. Koenig" left an indelible mark on the lives of her many Latin, English and Developmental Reading students at Logan High School and the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse. She was dedicated to historical preservation efforts as evidenced by her work with the La Crosse County Historical Society where she served on the Board of Directors, on the La Crosse Historic Sites Preservation Commission and as Editor of the Past, Present & Future newsletter. She spearhead-ed an effort to restore the Hixon House garden and served as a Hixon House docent. Always intrigued by the Our Lady of Sorrows chapel in the La Crosse Catholic Cemetery, Gen led an effort to restore the chapel, add it to the National Register of Historic Places and provide for it through an organization that would give ongoing support. Her work was recognized by the Wisconsin State Historical Society with an award in 1999. Also an active member in Church Women United, she combined several areas of interest when she wrote the booklet "Historic Churches of La Crosse" published in 1998. As a result of her years of active church and civic involvement she was named one of Security Savings and Loan's "Wisconsin's Most Admired Senior Citizens". Her family and friends remember her as an enthusiastic hostess, a great "April-fooler", a consummate baker, a dogged catcher of published grammatical errors, a terrific bridge player, a perfect but demanding tutor, an eager adventurer, a ready laugher and Grandpa Bob's number one weeder and cross-country ski companion. She loved sharing a cocktail or a glass of Bob's wine, preferably on the Hoeschler Drive porch. She was a proud PR rep for family and friends. To those she loved Gen was positioned squarely in their corner at all times; pity the poor soul who crossed them. Gen is survived by daughters Mary Anne (Ronald) Wawrzyn, and Kristine (Mark) O'Meara; grandchildren Robert (Susan) Wawrzyn, Matthew (Antoinette) Wawrzyn, James (Valerie) Wawrzyn, Caroline, Grace, Genevieve and Timothy O'Meara; great-grandchildren Ned, Peter, Clara, Michael, Monica, Eleanor, Ian, Quinn and Theodore. Funeral services for Genevieve Koenig will be held on Sat., Dec. 29 at the Cathedral of Saint Joseph the Workman. Visitation will be 9:30-11:00 AM with the Mass of Christian Burial at 11 AM. The Committal Service will be held in the Our Lady of Sorrows Chapel, La Crosse Catholic Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, contributions to the Cemetery Chapel Restoration Fund, 519 Losey Blvd So., La Crosse, WI, 54601 or the La Crosse County Historical Society, P.O. Box 1272, La Crosse, WI 54602-1272 will be greatly appreciated.

Published in Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Dec. 23, 2012
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