- Memorial Visitation
- Saturday, September 19th from 9-11am at HERITAGE FUNERAL HOME, 9200 S. 27th St, Oak Creek
- Memorial Service
- Saturday, September 19th at 11am at HERITAGE FUNERAL HOME, 9200 S. 27th St, Oak Creek
Rosa Lee Oelke (nee Brigman) left this world on Tuesday, September 15, 2020 and joined her beloved late husband Carroll Oelke in a peaceful, blessed place of eternal happiness. She was born in South Carolina on November 17, 1935 to Anna Belle and Coley Brigman and was the eldest of 9 children.
Rosa met Carroll Oelke when he was stationed at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina. They married in 1953, bringing her to his home state of Wisconsin to meet his family and build their life together. She loved living in Wisconsin, initially living on the family farm in Elroy, beginning a close relationship with her mother-in-law, the late Virginia Oelke Hahn, whom she remained devoted to until Virginia’s passing. In 1957 they moved to Oak Creek where they made their home and raised four children. Her husband and her children were her life, leaving them a letter that stated “her and Dad loved us very much even though often at times I’m sure you didn’t think so.”
Rosa enjoyed caring for the elderly and worked many years as a nurses’ aide at Willowcrest Nursing Home as well as a private aide. She retired from employment in 1989, and in 1990 her and Carroll moved to Hillsboro upon his retirement where their wooded hillside retreat in the country gave them the relaxing peace they had looked forward to throughout their working years. Rosa returned to Oak Creek shortly after Carroll’s death in 1992 and remained there until 2016 when she moved by her daughters and son in southwestern Wisconsin due to declining health. Her final resting place will be next to Carroll at Forest Hill Cemetery in Oak Creek.
Rosa’s life-long hobbies were planting and tending her flower gardens from daylight to dusk in summer and crocheting cozy afghans and hats in winter. She also enjoyed drives with Carroll through the country back roads, being by the water (especially Myrtle Beach), shopping, visiting family, sleepovers with the grandchildren, going to the movies, seeing plays at The Fireside, playing Skipbo, watching classic westerns on TV, and going on the annual girls’ weekend getaways.
She was preceded in death by her beloved husband Carroll Oelke, dear son Steven Oelke, parents Coley and Anna Belle Brigman, parents-in-law George Oelke and Virginia Oelke Hahn, brothers Bobby and Lonnie, sisters Marie and Betty, two sisters-in-laws Evelyn and Judy, and a brother-in-law Jimmy.
Cherished memories live on through her children Barb (David) Scardino, Terry (Altajane) Oelke, and Debbie (Daryl) Lancour; daughter-in-law Debbie Oelke Halsey (Bill); and grandchildren Domanic Scardino, Matthew (Rebecca) Scardino; Jennifer Oelke, Kristina (Kevin) Sink, Patricia (Mike) Deardorf, Julia Oelke, Joshua (Rebecca) Lancour, and Kylea (Matthew) Roy. She also had the joy of time with 14 great grandchildren–Alexandra Scardino-Boudreaux (Preston), Olivia Scardino, Alexis Beecher Oelke, Lauren Oelke, Kevin Sink III, Derek Sink, Melissa Oelke, Andrew Deardorf, Mykah Lancour, Isaiah Lancour, Oliver Lancour, Ellamae Lancour, Violet Roy, and Jordy Roy.
She is also survived by sisters Letha and Shirley and brothers Jesse and David; Carroll’s brothers Gene (Helen), Richard (Janet), and Virgil (Arlys), and many other extended family members. She will be dearly missed by several close friends – Connie, Ray, Judy G, Judy P, Jeff, and Joelene.
The family extends heartfelt thanks to the staff at Bluffview Memory Care and at Gundersen Health System for their caring dedication to the comfort of Rosa in these past years.
Heritage Funeral Homes in Oak Creek is assisting the family. Visitation is on Saturday, September 19 from 9-11 a.m. A memorial service will begin at 11, followed by a procession to Forest Hill Cemetery for internment.
Across the years I will walk with you – in deep green forests; on shores of sand: and when our time on earth is through, in heaven, too, you will have my hand. – Robert Sexton