LaVerne B. Brehmer, 81, Former member of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church
LaVerne B. Brehmer died Wednesday, January 11 at age 81. Mrs. Brehmer was born October 13, 1924 in Oak Park to Herman W. Boltz and Mabel Strunk Boltz. She was a 1942 graduate of Proviso East High School, and married Louis F. Brehmer of Canton on September 20, 1952.

Mrs. Brehmer retired as an executive secretary, and was a full-time homemaker and mother. She volunteered at Hines Veterans Hospital in Maywood for several years, and belonged to several genealogical societies. During her childhood and early adulthood, she was a member of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Forest Park, singing in the choir and teaching Sunday school.

Mrs. Brehmer had three daughters, Cynthia of Phoenix, Pamela of Perkiomenville, Pennsylvania, and Janette, also of Phoenix. Grandsons are Michael Gooch and Daniel Gooch. She was preceded in death by her husband, Louis Brehmer, in October of 2004 and her brother Herman Boltz in 200.

Interment will be Wednesday, January 18 at 11 a.m. at Forest Home-Waldheim Cemetery in Forest Park. Arrangements were handled by Zimmerman-Ehringer-Harnett Funeral Home.

Jane C. Gassen, 51, Loving mother, devoted daughter
Jane C. Gassen, 51, passed away on Jan. 8 at Loyola Hospital. Mrs. Gassen was the beloved wife of the late Richard, the loving mother of Virginia Martha, and the devoted daughter of Orlando and Caroline Coryell. Services were held at Hursen Funeral Home in Hillside on Jan. 11. Interment was at All Saints Cemetery.

Nancy J. Kersten, Volunteer and friend
Nancy J. Kersten, a resident of Forest Park since 1987, passed away at Loyola Hospital on January 12. Mrs. Kersten was the wife of the late Ralph Kersten and mother of Dr. Tom Kersten. She was the sister in law of Galen (Shriley), Don (Kathleen), Larry (Rosemary) and Phyllis Kersten.

Mrs. Kersten served as a Wave in World War II. In later years, she taught Sunday school and served on the church council at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church. She served as a volunteer for Lutheran Child and Family Services, and briefly volunteered at Oak Park Hospital. She also volunteered for the Main Street Association. She remained active for most of her retirement years, taking aerobic and Tai Chi classes at the Oak Park YMCA.

A memorial service will be held Wednesday, January 18 at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Forest Park. Gifts in Mrs. Kersten’s memory may be given to the Cardinal Bernadin Cancer Center at Loyola, 2160 S. 1st Avenue, Maywood, IL 60153 for lung cancer research, or to St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, 500 Hannah Ave., Forest Park, IL 60130.

Mrs. Kersten donated her body to medical science. At a later date, her remains will be interred in the Memorial Garden at Grace Lutheran Church in River Forest.

Margaret E. Beck, 91, Lifelong resident of Forest Park
Margaret A. Beck, nee Buenger, 91, of Forest Park, recently passed away. Mrs. Beck was the beloved wife of the late Robert James and the loving mother of Barbara (Mel) Schafer, Robert L. (the late Dianne), Kathleen (Lee) Voigt, James (Sheryl) and the late Ronald. Mrs. Beck was the fond grandmother of 12 and great grandmother of 15. She was the dear sister of Wilbur Buenger and Clarence Buenger. Visitation was held Monday at Zimmerman-Ehringer-Harnett Funeral Home and Tuesday at St. John Evangelical Lutheran Church, where services were also held. Interment was at Chapel Hill Gardens West Cemetery.

Rose Mele, 93, Great grandmother of 24
Rose Mele, nee Breseman, 93, of Crystal River, FL, formerly of Forest Park, passed away Jan. 14. Mrs. Mele was the loving mother of Joseph D. Breseman, Joann Roberts and the late Nanette Rozhon. She was the fond grandmother of 10 and great grandmother of 24. Visitation will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 19 at Zimmerman-Ehringer-Harnett Funeral Home, 7319 Madison St. in Forest Park.