Irene Claire Brinkman
Starks Family Funeral Homes & Cremation Services - Sommerfeld Chapel
15 N Barton St
New Buffalo, MI

Irene Claire Brinkman, 87, of Union Pier, Michigan, passed away at her home surrounded by her loving family on Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2021.

Irene was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on Dec. 6, 1933, to the late Margaret and Albert Youdell. She was a graduate of Kirtland High School in 1951 in Kirtland, Ohio.

Irene worked at The News-Dispatch, where she met her husband, and at Phillips Drill as a secretary. She married Richard Brinkman on Dec. 20, 1952, in Michigan City, Indiana. They resided in Michigan City until 1968, and then had a home built in Union Pier, where they enjoyed spending their retirement years.

After their move to Union Pier, she became a secretary and later a business manager at the New Buffalo Area Schools for the next 28 years.

Besides her career, Irene was also very involved in her community. She was an active member of the New Buffalo Service League for 40 years. She was very proud of the annual Craft Show and giving scholarships to New Buffalo students.

She also was on the Miss New Buffalo and Blossomtime committees, MARSP organization, Pine Grove Cemetery Board, Pokagon Fund board and the Timberlane Shores Board of Directors, frequently with leadership roles as a president, secretary or treasurer.

She also supervised the township and school board elections. During her free time, she enjoyed gardening with flowers and vegetables, spending time with her two grandsons, working during holidays at a local florist and helping with Blessings in a Backpack.

Irene was preceded in death by her husband, Richard; sister, Winnie (Bob) Spratt; and her grandson, Jeffrey Adamec.

She is survived by her daughter, Cynthia (Arthur) Adamec of Gladwin; grandson, Justin (Mary) Adamec of Grand Rapids; sister, Dot Gallion of Michigan City; and many nieces and nephews.

In accordance with her wishes, cremation has taken place. Visitation will be held at the Sommerfeld Chapel in New Buffalo from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 7. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 8, 2021, at the Sommerfeld Chapel in New Buffalo, with visitation from 10 a.m. until the time of service. Interment will take place in a private ceremony at Pine Grove Cemetery in New Buffalo.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that those planning an expression of sympathy may consider Meals on Wheels of Southwest Michigan, or Caring Circle of Spectrum Health Lakeland.

Published by La Porte County Herald-Dispatch from Sep. 24 to Oct. 1, 2021.
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6:00p.m. - 8:00p.m.
the Sommerfeld Chapel
New Buffalo, MI
Memorial service
the Sommerfeld Chapel
New Buffalo, MI
Funeral services provided by:
Starks Family Funeral Homes & Cremation Services - Sommerfeld Chapel
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2 Entries
Irene will be very much missed. She was lovely, thoughtful, compassionate and enjoyable to talk to and be with. A very unique person who I met on the Timberlane Board many years ago.
Ed Berman
October 13, 2021
Sorry for your loss Cindy may she rest in peace
Kathy Gulliver
September 28, 2021
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