Irene E. Minier (nee Kowalczk), 88, passed peacefully in her sleep Sunday morning, Dec. 1, at her residence in the Vineyards on Catawba Island. A loving mother, grandmother, great grandmother, aunt, and friend to many, she touched the hearts of all those fortunate enough to call her family or friend. She was born on Nov. 28, 1925, to Stanley and Julia Kowalczk in Gypsum, and, in her heart, was a proud “Gypsum Girl” all her life.
Irene married John D. Minier on Oct. 5, 1946, who preceded her in death on their wedding anniversary in 1988. John was a member of the 192nd Tank Battalion, Company C, and was a survivor of the Bataan Death March and three and a half years as a Japanese prisoner of war. Along with her husband, Irene was active in the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor organization, staying active well after her husband’s passing.
Irene retired from the Port Clinton School District Cafeteria System in 1986 where she progressed from a cook in the Portage Elementary School, to a baker at Port Clinton High School, to the Assistant Manager, and then Manager of the District’s Cafeteria System and School Lunch Program.
A life-long Catholic, Irene was a member of the Immaculate Conception Church. She was also a member of the Ladies Auxiliary of the following organizations: Moose Lodge #161; Disabled American Veterans; American Legion Post #113; VFW Post #2480; and former member of the Port Clinton Elks Lodge #1718. She was very active as indicated in her hobbies of traveling, gardening, fishing, bowling, playing cards every Friday night, and, most importantly, spending time with her family.
Surviving are her sons Joseph S.(Kris) of Greenville, MI, and John A. (Cindy) of Port Clinton; four grand children: Sara, Kate (Jason), Laura (Tim), and John Paul (Jenni); and four great grand children: Kalle, Paige, Taylor, and Colin. Also surviving is a brother, Stanley (Donna) Kowalczk of Port Clinton. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, her brother Edward, and her sister Pauline Topel.
Services will be Friday, Dec. 6 at 10:30 a.m. at the Immaculate Conception Church, 414 Madison Street, Port Clinton, with Father John C. Missler officiating. Burial will follow at the Riverview Cemetery in Port Clinton.
Visitation will be Thursday, Dec. 5, from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at the Neidecker, Leveck & Crosser Funeral Home in Port Clinton.
Memorials may be made to the Immaculate Conception Church or The Vineyards on Catawba. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.neideckerleveckcrosser.com.