Rosemary Schoenen passed away peacefully from natural causes on April 15, 2023 with family by her side at her home at Villa Ventura Assisted Living. At 98 years young, all who know and love her will recognize her distaste for mentioning her age at her passing.
Rosemary was born August 18, 1924, the oldest child of Stephen and Loretta Huber Schauwecker in Osage County, Missouri. She grew up on the family farm during the Great Depression and shared memories of her parents helping feed and shelter itinerant people passing through the area in search of work. She was expected to work hard to help her parents, look after younger siblings, and mastered the domestic arts at her mother’s side. In her youth she developed long-standing standards for cleanliness, godliness, and decorum. From youth, she was an expert seamstress. She excelled in school and remained curious and educated her entire life. A game of cards or dominoes, lively polka music, and social time for friends and family were foundational in her upbringing and instilled in her a life-long love of family time and holiday gatherings.
Rosemary attended high school in the nearby community of Westphalia, Missouri. There she met a sweet, handsome, kind boy (her description) named Frank Schoenen who became her husband on April 19, 1944. His poem about the love of family, penned before they graduated high school, hung in a small gold frame in her home for the next 80 years. They welcomed daughters Carol, Mary Pat and Lori and one son, Frank, over the next 16 years. Rosemary was a homemaker and kept things running smoothly at home while Frank worked at Missouri Pacific Truck Lines. Special memories were made during the years they visited her parents living in Jefferson City, Missouri and her three siblings, their growing families, along with her own brood, each had a dedicated room in the sprawling house on High St. Cousins bonded, Dads got happily rowdy, the Moms and Grandma cooked for the crowd; no one was permitted to miss Mass on Sunday.
Frank, Sr., died prematurely of leukemia in 1975. Following his death, Rosemary entered a new phase of her life by learning to drive a car and leave her home for work. She enjoyed work as an educational aide for students at Truman Elementary School, and later worked in administration for upper management at Zurich Insurance. She served for 12 years as chair of Jackson County Widows and Widowers. At St. Regis Catholic Church she became a Stephen’s Minister, was active in Befriender’s, was a Eucharistic Minister and served funeral luncheons. She was quick to volunteer, lend a hand, and a masterful organizer. She enjoyed her time with the Red Hatter’s, eating in restaurants, meeting church friends for weekend brunch at Benjamin Ranch, attending theatre and concert productions, and playing LOTS of bridge. Rosemary lived life to the fullest for as long as she was able, and it was only in the last few years of her life that she began truly slowing down.
Rosemary remains an inspiration to us all. She was proud of her German heritage, intelligent, strong, resourceful, and frugal. The sacrifices she made to support her children through college and beyond were made without complaint or judgement. She graciously donated her time and talents to causes she believed in, relied on her faith for guidance and strength, and saw the best in the people she loved. She was a doting grandma and delighted in the accomplishments of her children and their progeny. She leaves behind a legacy of goodness and sincerity, and we honor the impact she had upon us all. We will treasure her memory and miss her forever.
Rosemary is survived by her 3 daughters, Carol Nelson, Mary Pat Dodson, Lori Madden, and son, Frank.
She is also survived by one sister, Alice Mueller, and one brother, Harry Schauwecker. She was predeceased by her husband, Frank, and one brother, Steve.
She leaves 7 grandchildren, 3 great-granddaughters, 3 great-grandsons and 1 great-great granddaughter.
The family wishes to especially thank Rosemary’s caregivers at Villa Ventura, the therapists at EmpowerMe Wellness and Elara Caring hospice who lovingly cared for our Mother in her final days.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to the American Heart Association or the American Diabetes Association.