Laurene Kay Smetek
Laurie Smetek lost her battle with cancer on June 14, 2022. She was diagnosed in January of 2022 and fought a hard battle for five months.
She was born to Robert and Beatrice Berka on September 4, 1956, McCord Air Force Base, Tacoma, Washington. She was the third of four sisters. Moving and traveling throughout the country, eventually settling in Wisconsin in 1969 when her father retired from the Air Force.
She had many accomplishments in life, but her proudest were being a mother of two and grandmother of six. Laurie loved family.
Mother of Joe Smetek (Stephanie) and Krissy Wolf (Stan). Our mom will always be with us and will be remembered for encouraging us to be ourselves and supporting us throughout our entire lives. Our mom did not miss any of our events growing up and strived to be there for us as adults and for our children. Her favorite time was when we were all together.
Loving grandmother to Deanna Wolf, Bradley Smetek, Caitlin Kattwinkel, Trenton Smetek, Everett Wolf and Alexander Wolf. She was referred to as Texas Grandma by her grandchildren, except for Everett who calls her Grandma Texas. She was a fun grandma and loved spending time with her grandkids. They especially liked going to places, traveling and playing board/card games together. Her children remember her saying “I used to let them win when they were younger, but as they got older, I would try to find ways to beat them” which made for some wildly fun times.
Although our family was split up across the country (TX, WV, WI), we all got together often. Our mom taught us the true meaning of family, unconditional love, and was always there for us. She was only a call away to give advice, make us laugh or just listen to us talk. She always had a way to make you feel better. We are grateful for the memories we have made together and especially loved our trip to Disney World in 2017.
Laurie retired in September 2021 after 39 years at United States Bowling Headquarters. She began in the rules department at WIBC (Women’s International Bowling Congress) and moved up to a Rules Counselor and then Rules Manager. She finished her career as a manager, working with developing the SMART Program for youth scholarship. This program allowed scholarship money to help young bowlers get a jump start on their dreams. If you were involved in the sport of bowling, you knew Laurie Smetek. She attended yearly conventions, worked on special projects, bi-laws, legislation and was instrumental on writing the annual rules book. She loved working there and relocated with the company to Texas in 2008, with her good friend and co-worker Roberta Haffner.
Although Laurie only had 65 years of life, she made each one count. Mom/Texas Grandma, Grandma Texas/sister, you will be greatly missed! We love you! You will stay in our hearts forever.
She will be remembered and missed by her children, grandchildren, sisters Ann Berka (Racine, WI), Vickie Strasburg (Oak Creek, WI) and Georgene (Dennis) Zeisse (Burlington, WI), nieces, nephews, great- nieces, great-nephews, family and friends who loved her very much; and also, by those whose lives she touched.
We would like to thank Zilber Family Hospice for the wonderful care they gave Laurie in her final days.
A service at Oak Grove Cemetery on the corner of County U (76th St.) and Hwy G in the Town of Raymond will be held on Laurie’s Birthday, September 4, 2022. Time to be determined.
Heritage Funeral Home