LA FERIA, TX. - Marie Cecilia Dudenhoeffer Bauer, 89, passed away on Nov. 9, 2012 at her home in La Feria, TX. Tootie, as she was known to her friends and family, was born on Jan. 10, 1923-the third child of Adolph and Minnie Dietz Dudenhoeffer.
She graduated from St. Mary's Catholic School in Gainesville, Tx. in 1939, then continued her studies at St. Paul's Hospital in Dallas. There she received her nursing degree and became a Registered Nurse. Tootie graduated from nursing school shortly before World War II and had a strong desire to help the wounded on the battlefield. However, her parents would not allow that since they had just lost her brother, Jerry Dudenhoeffer, to a rare brain infection. Instead, Tootie remained in Gainesville and worked at the hospital during the war which filled a great void stateside as so many medical personnel went overseas. Tootie and one other nurse were often the only two on duty at Gainesville Hospital. They did whatever was needed to care for their patients-sometimes even cooking their meals!
After the war, Tootie moved to the Valley to live in La Feria with her sister, Eva Dudenhoeffer Bauer, and she became acquainted with Eva's brother-in-law, Carl. They dated when she had free time from her work at Valley Baptist Hospital in Harlingen. Tootie married Carl Louis Bauer, Sr. on Dec. 27, 1949. They had six children: Chris, Mark, Peggy, Patrick, Carlis and Anne. She was a very devoted wife to her husband, Carl, for 63 years. Life on their farm was often difficult, as bad weather and bad markets were frequently an issue. She always cooked wonderful family meals with the various foods Carl would bring home from the farm. When her children became of school age she returned to nursing at Dolly Vinsant Hospital in San Benito and served as head nurse of the Surgical Recovery Room.
Tootie was the best, most wonderful mother to her six children. She was a supportive parent of the PTA's at St. Anthony's Catholic School, Sacred Heart Catholic School and St. Joseph's Academy-the schools her children attended-as well as the 4-H Club.
She was a gracious hostess, always welcoming others into her home. She always had a guest room ready for a visiting family member or friend, or a place at her table. She loved the holidays and took great pleasure in beautifully decorating her home to welcome family and friends for holiday parties. Tootie loved others and often generously cared for elderly family members and friends. One of her favorite places in the world was South Padre Island where she spent many happy days and shared good memories with loved ones.
Tootie was an active member of the St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church where she served on the altar society. She was a woman of prayer and lived out her faith and commitments by serving God, her family and friends.
Tootie will be deeply missed, and her memory will live on in the lives of her extended family. Her children are Chris Bauer and his wife, Debbie, of Rancho Viejo; son, Mark Bauer, of Dallas; daughter, Peggy Brelsford, and her husband, Bill, of Tyler; son, Patrick Bauer, of Harlingen; son, Carlis Bauer, and his wife, Karen, of Harlingen; and daughter, Anne Fain, and her husband, Miles, of Austin. Her beloved grandchildren include Kristie Trejo, Kate Brelsford, George Brelsford, Matthew Fain, Claire Bauer, Jenna Bauer and Molly Fain, and great grandson, Colten Trejo.
She is survived by her brothers, Bud, Al and Mike Dudenhoeffer, and sister, Anne Otto. She was preceded in death by her parents, Adolf and Minnie Dudenhoeffer, her sister, Eva Dudenhoeffer Bauer, her brother, Jerry Dudenhoeffer, and her husband, Carl Bauer.
Visitation will be held on Monday, Nov. 12, at 6 p.m. - 7 p.m., with a Rosary at 7 p.m. at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in La Feria.
Funeral Mass will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 13, at 11 a.m. at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in La Feria. Burial will be at a later date, as Tootie donated her body to the advancement of medical science at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston.
Her family is forever grateful to her devoted caregivers Irma Armenio, Delia Castillo, Alicia Mino and Norma Hinojosa. Her family also wishes to thank Dr. John Ferris for his care and friendship along with Dr. Seudeal of Harlingen.
You are invited to sign the guestbook or leave a memory at www.buckashcraft.com.
Arrangements are with Buck Ashcraft Funeral Home.
Sign the guestbook at: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/valleystar/
Published in Valley Morning Star from Nov. 12 to Nov. 13, 2012