August 22, 1931—May 15, 2018
Age 86, of Kenosha, formerly of Salem, passed away surrounded by her loving family, on May 15, 2018 at St. Joseph’s Home and Rehabilitation Center.
She was born August 22, 1931, in Oak Park, IL to the late Ralph H. and Elizabeth V. (nee McGuire) Dring. Joanne spent her early life in Oak Park where she attended St. Bernadine’s School in Forest Park, IL and Trinity High School in River Forest, IL.
Joanne worked as a bookkeeper and a switchboard operator at Thomas T. North Inc. at the Insurance Exchange Building in Chicago, IL. On June 19, 1954 Joanne was united in marriage to Louis F. Willkomm. Following marriage, Louis and Joanne made their home in Salem, Wisconsin. Joanne continued her work in bookkeeping as vice president and secretary of Willkomm Milk Service, Inc., her husband’s business, for 49 years. In the early 1970’s Joanne became a seamstress at S & S Tailors, and later the Globe Department Store, both in Antioch, IL. Her seamstress work continued for over 40 years as a small business from her home; altering clothes, creating, designing and making wedding gowns, bridesmaid dresses, prom dresses, curtains and quilts, and special gifts for her children, grandchildren and many others. Joanne’s creative design and sewing skills were recognized in 1996 at the Kenosha County Fair when she was honored to receive the Grand Champion award in sewing for a wedding dress she designed and made. Although Joanne was very proud of this award, the award she was most proud of was being bestowed the Mother of the Year award in 1981 by the Future Homemakers of America. Between sewing and parenting, she was also an active parishioner of Holy Name/Holy Cross Catholic Church in Wilmot for 64 years serving on Parish Council and various committees. Joanne was also a member of Catholic Financial Life Branch 151, Kenosha.
Survivors include her children, James (Neile) Willkomm, Lawrence Willkomm, Mary Beth (Robert) Miller, Christopher (Debbie Acuff) Willkomm, Therese Willkomm (Jarda Hutar), Karen (Michael) Stiles, Rita (Bil) Scherrer, Jane (Marc) Lesnick and Scott (Barbara Kelnhofer) Willkomm. She is further survived by her grandchildren; Michael Willkomm, Jamie Willkomm; Spencer (Melanie) Tabbert, Celena (Dean) Powers, Cory (Brittany) Tabbert, Savannah (Ryan) June, Stephen and Linda Miller; Nicole (Steve) Beranis, Amanda (AJ) Bettack, Lisa (Jeff) Mattson; Megan Hutar, Kelley and Andrew Stiles and by 9 great-grandchildren, also survived by 4 sisters-in-law and many nieces and nephews.
Joanne was preceded in death by her husband, son: Randy Willkomm, daughter-in-law: Joni Willkomm, and great-grandchildren: Benjamin Beranis and Riley Willkomm-Schavio, her parents, and by 4 brothers and preceded by 26 in-laws.
The family would like to express a special thank you to the doctors, nurses and the staff at St. Joseph’s Home and Rehabilitation Center. They would also like to extend a special thank you to Hospice Alliance.
Memorials are suggested to The Holy Cross Parish, St. Joseph Home and Rehabilitation Center or to Hospice Alliance.
Mass of Christian Burial for Joanne will be held on Saturday, May 19, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. at Holy Cross Church in Wilmot. Visitation for family and friends will be held on Friday May 18th from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Schuette-Daniels Funeral Home, and again on Saturday, May 19th at CHURCH from 11:00 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. Private burial at Southern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery.
Schuette-Daniels Funeral Home & Crematory
625 S. Browns Lake Drive
Burlington, WI 53105