November 1, 1933—April 18, 2017
TOMAH - Irene Kenworthy, 83, of Tomah and formerly of rural Kendall, passed away on Tuesday, April 18, 2017, at the Mayo Clinic Health System-Franciscan Hospital, La Crosse.
She was born on November 1, 1933, to Edward and Delia (Autote) Durand in Fall River, Massachusetts. Irene was a member of Case Senior High School, Swansea, Massachusetts, graduating Class of 1952. On October 4, 1952, Irene was united in marriage to Hugh W. Kenworthy, Jr. He preceded her in death on August 1, 2013. Together, Irene and Hugh resided in the Rehoboth, Massachusetts, area until 1975, when they relocated their family to a dairy farm in the Township of Wilton. In 1988, Hugh & Irene joined the Peace Corps. Together they traveled to numerous places volunteering their time with the Peace Corps. One of the most memorable trips was to the jungles of Ecuador.
Raising her family was Irene’s most important life work. She was a true role model for her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Her love of music was passed down through the generations and she proudly gave piano lessons to several of her grandchildren, holding recitals for them to show their new talent. Her kind and compassionate heart was a true reflection of her faith. She was a dedicated and devout member of the Seventh Day Adventist Church, playing organ for numerous years and cooking pies for the church as part of the local fair. She also volunteered for over 30 years at the Tomah Care Center, bringing the beautiful gift of music to the residents, along with volunteering for several years at the Tomah VA Medical Center. She will be remembered for her unconditional love, her loving, kind and caring heart and an example of a life well lived.
She is survived by her 10 children, Hugh III and Debra (Rose) Kenworthy, Robert and Pauline (St. Pierre) Kenworthy, Diane (Kenworthy) and Dan Davis, Nathan and Kathleen (Secatore) Kenworthy, Mark and Susan (Honish) Kenworthy, John and Christine (Hemmersbach) Kenworthy, Jessica (Kenworthy) and Brad Kortbein, Kathryn Kenworthy, Mary Beth (Kenworthy) and Roger Hilliard, David and Carrie (Riffle) Kenworthy; 60 grandchildren with their spouses; 52 great-grandchildren; four sisters, Gert Moreau, Martha McVey, Claire Carpenter, Sister Lorraine Durand of the St. Joseph Sisters; two brothers-in-law, Frank Kenworthy and Jack (Gloria) Kenworthy; countless nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Hugh; infant great-grandson, Richard Handorf; four brothers, Alex, Paul, Charlie and Louie; two sisters, Yvonne Moore and Lucy McGrady; numerous brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law.
A Funeral Service will be held on Friday, April 21, 2017, 2 p.m. at the Seventh Day Adventist Church, Tomah. Pastor Mike Ehm will officiate. Burial will be in Mount Vernon Cemetery, Township of Tomah.
Relatives and friends are invited for a time of visitation on Thursday (today) from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. at the Sonnenburg Family Funeral Home, 801 E. Monowau Street, Tomah, and on Friday at the church from 1 p.m. until the time of the service.
Online condolences may be given at www.sonnenburgfamilyfh.com.
In lieu of flowers, memorial may be given to the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Irene’s memory.
Sonnenburg Family Funeral Home