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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Helen C. Augustine

Helen Claire Agnes Anna Augustine, 93, of Oconto, passed away Wednesday, June 25.

Born Dec. 31, 1920, in Oconto, to Agnes Extrom and Henry H. Derpinghaus, she graduated from Jefferson and Oconto High Schools. Baptized Christian, she was later received into Full Communion as a Catholic by Fr. Matthias Alt on March 8, 1941. She married Joseph James Augustine on Aug. 9, 1941 at St. Joseph Catholic Church.

She played trumpet in the high school band and organ at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, Oconto and worked at Crawford’s Grocery Store, for Dr. and Mrs. Kwapy, Mr. and Mrs. Donald Holt, Panetti’s Ben Franklin Store and Lauerman Department Store. As a young woman, she made and sold items and later became a seamstress making clothing and liturgical vesture. The couple owned and operated Augustine Market for 15 years and she also drove school bus for Lane Bus Lines and worked at the Beyer Home Museum as a guide and did lawncare. Serving as Treasurer of the Oconto County Historical Society for many years, she was granted a Life Membership for dedicated service.

A Cub Scout Den Mother, she was involved with St. Joseph Grade School, the school band, a member of the Oconto County Grocers Association and chaffeured the School Sisters of Notre Dame. She enjoyed bowling, ice skating, her cats, Missie and Bluffy, gardening with her son, Ken, being awarded the title: ‘Flower Lady of Oconto’ by the Oconto Garden Club. In 1989, she hosted the garden club for a tour of the gardens at ‘Papa’s House,’ (Don Levy–Obertin Home) on Superior Ave, Oconto.

She played the organ in most Oconto churches, was well known for her service through various ministries at Holy Trinity (St. Joseph) and was Parishioner of the Month in April, 1991. As President of the Altar Rosary Society, she chaired funeral luncheons, the game tent for the parish picnic where the couple provided many handmade prizes, was organist for 25 years, choir director, liturgy planner and liturgical environment coordinator.

Her work as a seamstress provided chasubles, dalmatics and stoles for her priest son, Ken, parishes in which he served, priests in the Milwaukee Archdiocese, Green Bay Diocese, St. John Cathedral, Milwaukee, and Sacred Heart School of Theology, Hales Corners and others.

Survivors include a son, Rev. Kenneth J. Augustine; a sister, Laura June Ottow; a granddaughter; four great-granchildren; nephew; niece; cousins; other relatives; friends and neighbor and ‘adopted son’ Mark Orth and family.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Joseph; a brother-in-law, Lawrence; a son and daughter-in-law, James and Ruthann and other relatives.

The family will receive relatives and friends at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Oconto, from 1 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. on Sunday, July 6, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 4 p.m. Fr. Kenneth J. Augustine will preside with Fr. Joel Sember, Pastor and other priests concelebrating, with burial in Oconto Catholic Cemetery. Memorial funds have been established for Holy Trinity Catholic Church Care Ministry and the parish St. Vincent de Paul Society Conference, 716 Madison St., Oconto, WI. Gallagher Funeral Home of Oconto is assisting the family with arrangements.




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