obit template2018-11-29T12:10:12+00:00

Audrey Marie

Every once in a while, one encounters an individual whose life was filled with so much love and joy that it is evident this person lived a life that was truly blessed. Audrey M. Kapke was one of these people. She spent many years giving and receiving love. A cherished mother, grandmother, great grandmother and friend, Audrey lived her life with an open heart and a giving spirit.

Under the leadership of President Warren G. Harding, America entered into the 1920s with confidence. The politics of the time were as turbulent as ever, yet industry had made the U.S. economy surge. The decade would be forever remembered for its carefree and decadent flavor. Aloysius Kopp and his wife, Evelyn (Bied), were far removed from these things that characterized the 1920s. They lived a modest life in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Aloysius worked in the “booming” industry at Pfister and Vogel Tannery while Evelyn worked at St. Luke’s Hospital. In the spring of 1926, the couple was busy preparing their home for the arrival of their first child, and on April 10th, they delighted in welcoming the birth of their daughter, Audrey Marie. The Kopp household would grow to include five children: Audrey, Kenny, Caroline, Arnold and Bobby.

Along with her siblings, Audrey grew up in the quiet suburbs of Milwaukee in the area of 37th and Lincoln Avenue. The family eventually moved east to Burrell Street. As a young girl, Audrey learned how to bake from her mother, and this became a lifelong passion for her. She also loved to get her hair done at a salon on Lincoln Avenue. For education, Audrey attended Holy Ghost Catholic School through the 8th grade, and went on to graduate from Milwaukee Girls’ Trade and Technical School in 1940. Aside from her studies, Audrey also worked to help support her family during the challenging economic times of the Great Depression.

Audrey was in her early 20s when she fell in love with the “boy next door,” Harvey Kapke, and they were married on June 1, 1946. Over the next few years, the two were blessed with five children: Judy, Karen, Linda, Ellen and her “favorite son,” Wayne. Audrey exemplified all the wonderful things a mother should be – patient, caring, devoted and generous with her time. She never thought twice about going out of her way to help someone who needed her. Her family was truly the center of her world. Later on, when Audrey was blessed with grandchildren and great grandchildren, each of their births added yet another incredible blessing to her life.

Aside from being a devoted wife, mother and grandmother, Audrey worked doing what she did best – baking. She worked at Goldmann’s Department Store, Meurer’s Bakery and Cub Foods in the Bakery Department (she later retired from there). Her grandchildren actually looked forward to shopping with their parents at Cubs because they knew Grandma was there and always gave them a free cookie. Baking was one of Audrey’s greatest joys and she happily planned all the holiday dinners at her home. Traditionally, she baked thousands of cookies for the holidays, always starting early on to get them done in time. Her kids fondly remember coming home from school to the sweet aroma of her cookies, which were laid out all over the house before being stored in the cool attic and packaged for Christmas presents for family, friends and neighbors. Her family proudly carries on this tradition to this day. When it came to Audrey’s birthday, she always enjoyed strawberry shortcake, and she made it on occasion when the family got together too.

For Audrey, family was the greatest source of happiness in her life. She treasured every moment she spent in their company. Over the years, Audrey took some memorable trips for special events, like going to Texas to see her daughter, Karen, and husband, Lee, renew their wedding vows. She also attended a family reunion up north in Tomahawk, where she owned the water driving the pontoon boat. This past Christmas, Audrey was thrilled to go to Mayfair Mall with family to shop for Christmas ornaments for everyone. In her leisure time, Audrey enjoyed many hobbies, like baking, crocheting, Bingo, collecting elephants and working in her yard. In her quieter moments, she liked to watch some TV and enjoyed American Idol, Touched by an Angel, cooking shows, Dancing with the Stars, and shows on the Lifetime Channel.

Audrey enjoyed a happy, fulfilled life. However, things took a difficult turn when she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. As the disease progressed, it took its toll on not only Audrey but her family too. In 2008, she moved to the Wisconsin Lutheran Care Center (now Milwaukee Estates), where she could get the specialized care she needed. Audrey still had her sweet disposition and a sparkle in her eye and tried to stay active in various activities in her new community. During her last days, Audrey was surrounded by her beloved children, grandchildren, her brother Arnold, and Pastor Gurgel, as well as the wonderful, caring people from the Grace Unit.

Although Audrey will be dearly missed, her legacy of love and dedication leaves her loved ones with wonderful memories and a strong foundation to look to for comfort.

Audrey M. Kapke (nee Kopp) Born to Eternal Life on Friday, March 2, 2012, at the age of 85. Cherished mother of the late Judy (Bob) Snopek, the late Karen (Lee) Zenski, Linda Asik, Ellen (Michael) Rozinski and Wayne (Kris) Kapke. Loving “Grandma” of Chuck, Jodi (Randy), Henry (Lori), Paul, Brian (Sue-Ellen), Trudy, Monica, Robin, Steven and Tyler. Great-grandma of Brianna, Calla, Zach, Dayton, Aliyah, Isabelle, Julia, Isaiah and Dallas. Dear sister of Caroline Kopp, Arnold Kopp, the late Kenny (Pat) Kopp and the late Bobby Kopp. Further survived by other relatives and friends.

Family and friends will gather at the Funeral Home on Wednesday, March 7, from 3:00 p.m. until time of the Memorial Service at 5:00 p.m. A special Thank You, to the staff of Milwaukee Estates for their loving care. Suminski Life Story Funeral Homes, Niemann / Suminski; 2486 S. Kinnickinnic Avenue, (414) 744-5156

Past Comments


NO MORE PAIN – NO MORE SITTING IN THAT WHEELCHAIR. That is what makes me deal with the fact that your gone. I still can’t believe what a fighter you were, just had to wait for us to be out of the room, hope you enjoyed your time with your brother, we will never forget him for being there with you.

Mom, I will never forget the look in your eyes and the smile on your face when you would would see me walking in the dining room, and the questions that would follow, how’s Mike, what’s he doing? how are the kids? Baby’s ok? You were always concerned about everyone else, you rarely complained, and when you did it was because you didn’t want people going out of their way for you.

I remember so many good things: when I would need a dessert, you were always willing. If I needed something washed because I just couldn’t get it clean you could do it. When I needed you to make your turkey in gravy (which is still the best meat at all the family parties) you didn’t seem to happy to do it, but you did. Purposely leaving the whites in the dryer and a load of clothes in the washer and coming home from work and they would be folded nice and neatly on the table. I remember coming home from up north and you would have a tuna salad in the refrig. I remember trying to scoop out all the dumpling from your chicken soup and you telling me to make sure i saved some for everyone else. Your poached eggs and cream sauce. All the different variations of things you would do with the leftover turkey after Thanksgiving. Liver, yuck you would tell me it was beef, ok mom good try, I wasn’t fooled. But surprise surprise I love it now.

Our annual Christmas shopping trips to the mall trying to push you through the tight fitting isles at Kohl’s. Or the nice ride you got at the zoo when you almost did a face dive into the gravel and you just chuckled.

Bringing out all my flower pots and having you fix them for me. They would always look so nice when you finished.

Well its your time to do the things you want to do. Give Judy & Karen a hug for me, and Mom momma & daddy are with you now.

I will remember what you said about NO fighting.

You will always be in my heart.

Love you, Ellen


Happy Birthday Mom

I miss you so much.

Love you


Happy Birthday Mom, Love you, Miss You.


Over a year has passed since you left us, I still can’t believe your not here. I know your in a much better place and I know for sure you wouldn’t like all this rain, but just remember April showers bring May flowers, and as soon as they start growing I will be bringing some to you. Give Judy & Karen a hug for me. Love you all,

Leave a condolence or share a memory

Go to Top