Tuesday, February 19, 2019
5:00 PM to 7:00 PM EST
Betzler Life Story Funeral Homes
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
The Rosary will be recited at 7 PM.
Mass of Christian Burial
Wednesday, February 20, 2019
11:00 AM EST
St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church
1150 West Centre Avenue
Portage, MI 49024
Visitation will begin at 10 AM. Following the mass, food and fellowship will be shared in the church hall. Burial after lunch in Ft. Custer National Cemetery.
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Patricia Markus was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She lived her life fully by extending herself selflessly to others. Making a lifetime as a wonderful homemaker she cherished her role as a nurturer to her growing family. Her genuine smile and warm personality drew many people to her over the years. Pat leaves behind a wonderful collection of memories that will fondly be remembered by all who knew and loved her.
So much of our nation’s history was characterized by the year 1941. It was the year that marked the fateful attack by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor. Franklin D. Roosevelt was leading the United States into unprecedented times. Dominik and Veronica (Jasieniecki) Klimek welcomed their newborn daughter, Patricia Ann, on February 15th in Mattawan, Michigan. Born the youngest of three children, her birth brought her parents great joy and promise during an era of great change.
Pat grew up on her family’s more than fifteen-acre grape farm in Mattawan. No stranger to hard work, she helped out on the farm as a young child. Proud of her Polish heritage, she lived a typical childhood of the times where she was known to have sleepovers and go shopping with friends. She met the love of her life, Jerry Markus at the tender age of fifteen at St. John Bosco Church where both of their families attended. Their first date was on St. Patty’s Day in 1956 to see the movie, “Julia” at Kalamazoo’s State Theater. Neither of them remembered much about the movie, but they were intrigued with one another right from the start!
Engaged by the time Pat turned sixteen and Jerry set off for the United States Army. Graduating with the Class of 1959 from Mattawan High School, it was perfect timing for the happy couple. Jerry had returned from the service and swept her into his arms right off the tarmac where his plane had just landed and carried her to the car. The church where they originally met was the perfect setting for their marriage on June 27, 1959. After a brief honeymoon to the beautiful Tahquamenon Falls in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, they returned to start construction on their forever home. It was the first home in the middle of what was once a cornfield and now a neighborhood. The total cost to build it was $13,500, a steep contrast in today’s market. Once they were settled, they started their family of three wonderful children; Randy, Sandy, and Kim.
Pat was determined to stay home with the children but often worked various side jobs in order to contribute to the family budget. Most often it was looking after neighborhood kids. As a mom, she was quite the prankster! She loved taking the kids to the latest horror movie at the Drive-In theater and when they returned home they’d race to their rooms to check under their beds! The kids couldn’t get much of anything past Pat. She had a real knack for telling when they were in trouble or pulling the wool over her eyes! As a family, they enjoyed many family day trips to Frankenmuth, Detroit, and Michigan City. Most summers they camped in Decatur in their trailer and always took the spot near the bathrooms. They also enjoyed camping at both Yankee Springs and Higgins Lake. Pat was known to start prepping meals a week ahead of their departures so that a majority of her time could be relaxing around the campfire and enjoying smores. During the daytime, she was often outdoors with a fan blowing on her and foil to help her get the most benefit from her time sunbathing. In addition to the wonderful memories she helped cultivate during their developing years, she also modeled living a faith-filled life. Raising each of the children in the traditional Catholic faith was something she was always proud of over the years.
A natural nurturer, it was no surprise that holidays were exceptionally large and festive for Pat. She carefully planned each and every one of them from Christmas, to Valentine’s, to St. Patty’s Day, to her traditional Polish celebrations. She loved to decorate as well as cook and bake! No holiday was complete without her delicious treats and homemade gifts. She loved to knit afghans and slippers. Pat had perfected her no-bake cookies, fudge, and homemade coffee cake. She also made a delicious roast beef and savory gravy that melted in your mouth! In addition to these celebrations, the family also traveled together to Cancun for a large gathering as well as Myrtle Beach! As long as they were together, her heart was content as her family meant the world to her.
Once the kids were grown, Pat relished in her years as a grandmother. She continued her many traditions and also watched them while their parents were at work. She never complained or grew tired of their time together as her family truly was where she found her purpose in life. Pat had a great influence on her grandchildren and helped shape who they are today. For enjoyment, she and Jerry traveled back to the same room at the Barcelo Tucancun Beach in Cancun for several years for an annual spring break trip. Despite her fear of the water, as long as she could sun herself and enjoy her favorite cocktail, Kahlua and Cream, she was satisfied. They became familiar with the staff on each of their trips there and enjoyed one another’s company.
She was exceptionally close to her sister, Helen over the years and would chat with her on the phone for hours. As her illness progressed in the past two years, Pat has been cared for by her loving family and husband, Jerry. They prayed with her and shared meals together. Pat grew to favor Jerry’s sloppy joes towards the end. Described as caring and compassionate, Pat will be deeply missed and lovingly remembered by her many special friends and loved ones. Each time they sit down to play Scrabble or soak up the warm rays of the sun, may they be reminded of her love.
Patricia A. Markus, age 78, of Portage, Michigan died February 16, 2019, in Kalamazoo. She was a charter member of St. Catherine of Sienna Parish. She was preceded in death by her son, Randy Markus. Surviving are her husband of 60 years, Jerry Markus; two daughters: Sandy (Gary) Steinbach and Kim (Jeff) Musser; six grandchildren: Ashley (Mark) Boettcher, Rachael (Ryan) Richardson, Kevin Steinbach, and Amberlee, Dylon and Seth Markus; two great-grandchildren: Ella Richardson and Wesley Boettcher; brother, John (Sue) Klimek; sister, Helen Delach and many special nieces and nephews. Visit with family and friends Tuesday, February 19, 2019, from 5-7 PM where a Rosary will be recited at 7 PM at Betzler Life Story Funeral Home, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Wednesday 11 AM at St. Catherine of Siena Parish (1150 W. Centre Ave.) with visitation beginning at 10 AM. A luncheon will follow the mass in the church hall and burial will take place at Ft. Custer National Cemetery. Please visit Pat’s personal web page at www.betzlerfuneralhome.com, where you can archive a favorite memory or photo and sign her online guestbook before coming to the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be directed to Michael J. Fox Foundation.