Lorraine Julia Seckar
Loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, daughter, aunt, wife, and friend to many passed away gently with family by her side and met Jesus on June 30th, . Lorraine, at the age of 93, was a survivor of COVID-19. She fought Alzheimer's for the past ten years, which eventually took her away from us. As a courageous woman and true fighter, she lived her last nine days by pure will and determination. We believe she used all of her strength as a sign to each of her nine children to be strong in life, in family, in crisis, and in God. To say she had strength, a fighting spirit, and a heart as solid as gold is an understatement.
Lorraine is survived by two sisters, nine children, 28 grandchildren, 28 great-grandchildren, and dozens of nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, and grand-nephews:
Sisters Elaine Wagner, Florida, and Betty Jane Fritz, Hubertus, WI.
Children, Grandchildren, and Great-Grandchildren:
Chris Seckar (Al Butvidas), Jeremy (Tamara) Bandow, Leo and Raz, Alyssa Seckar-Bandow (Stuart Middleton), Augusta, Ambrose, and Antonia, Alexandra Seckar-Bandow. Frank (Diane) Seckar Jr., Amy (Bob) Albright, Cami and Bobby, Frank (Jodi) Seckar III, Reed and Paige, Angie (Jeff) Seckar-Martinez, Addie and Chloe, Anne Cleaver (Mike). Kathy (Mark) Jungwirth, Karli, Kasey, Jared (Stephanie) Jungwirth, Emma Jungwirth Bernie (John) Stadtmueller, John (Jill) Stadtmueller, Sienna and Cooper, Allison (Aaron) Allie, AJ, Joabie, and Lukas. Laurie (Bernie) Barribeau, Andrea (Rob) Kraemer, Easton, Emersyn, and Oaklyn, Brittney Barribeau, Caeley (Andre) Petrus. Julie (Dave) Seckar-Anderson, Dane (Anna) Seckar-Anderson, Brady and Graham, Lacey (Bryan) Sleik, Jameson, Damian Seckar-Anderson, Whittney Seckar-Anderson. Stevie (Kathryn) Seckar, Claire (Pete) Chae, Jake and Ellison, Mark (Alex) Vasterling, Charlie Rose. James (Nancy) Seckar, Lauren (Joe) Fitzpatrick, Sean, Conor, and Rory, Mason Seckar, Logan Seckar Jeannie (Tom) Leske, Maddie, Peyton, Carson, and Pierson Leske.
Lorraine was born on April 9th, 1927 to Wendal and Mary Klamik. She was the third of six girls. Her parents were immigrants from Czechoslovakia and moved to America to start their family. Lorraine met and fell in love with a member of the US Naval Corps, Frank Seckar. His parents also came to the USA from Czechoslovakia to start their family in the land of the free. Lorraine met Frank through the Slovak Catholic Organization and married on August 29th, 1946. Together they celebrated 48 years of marriage and raised nine children.
Lorraine held countless meaningful positions and titles throughout her life. To list her career titles as only "mother, housewife, and receptionist" would be a disservice, as she was all that and so much more!
Band Director, Choreographer, Musician... Lorraine played the drums and trumpet. She belonged to two Drum & Bugle Corps in Milwaukee throughout her earlier years: Kilty Girls Drum & Bugle Corps and Slovak American Drum & Bugle Corps. When it came to marching in parades and deciding which group to march with, the decision was easy – both! She would march with one group, finish the parade, run back to the start of the parade, "change kilts" and march with the other group! Lorraine single-handedly taught each of her nine children an instrument to the best of her ability, and then found instructors for each child to further their instrumental and vocal skills. She began the "Seckar Family Polkateers" – a group composed of her young children who learned to play and sing polkas and Slovak music, among other genres. The Seckar Family Polkateers performed throughout the state of Wisconsin, including "Slovak Days" in Milwaukee, an audition for the Ted Mack Amateur Hour, and the highlight being an invitation to audition for the Ed Sullivan Show. The Polkateers were told they made the show, but were financially unable to participate. In addition to choreographing dance numbers, Lorraine sewed all of the polka dresses... hand-stitching detailed trim to each outfit.
Counselor, Spiritual Leader, Health Care Provider, Comforter... As a mother of nine, proud grandmother of 28 and great-grandmother of 28 Lorraine had a handle on nursing children back to great health, finding remedies to cure illnesses, teaching her children to eat healthy and constantly providing information on "Health and Wellbeing". She read books on heart health, mental health and many other topics. She taught everyone what she had learned from the experts. If she couldn't handle an issue, she made sure that her children were cared for by the professionals she admired most: medical professionals and health care providers. She never missed an opportunity to thank a Doctor, Nurse, or Medic for their strength and fortitude to pursue such a tough profession.
Lorraine is solely responsible for starting Julie's Touch of Silver Dance Studio, now in its 40th year of business. As the receptionist, drill sergeant, guard dog, and seamstress at the Studio, she counseled parents, students, and teachers to have constant love, support, and patience for the children. She made sure that everyone obeyed the studio rules, and protected her daughter's time and privacy. In a heartbeat she would show kindness, love, and support to all, never hesitating (no matter her age) to get up and show a child the correct way to do a trick or a dance move. And God forbid someone did not know how to "stay in step"! She would not rest until they did. Most students considered Lorraine a second mom or grandma as the years went on. She never missed a day of work in 25 years, until she was diagnosed with lymphoma at the age of 80. Even then, she only missed a few days. Add "lymphoma survivor" to the long list of Lorraine's titles. A heartfelt "Thank You" to Dr. Karen Gremminger, our mom's Hero.
Silent Partner, Supporter, Generous... Lorraine valued hard work and determination. She encouraged and gently pushed each and every one of her children to pursue their dreams, and made them all believe that anything and everything was possible with hard work and faith. She made sure that her children had the opportunity to have an education ("which can never be taken away from you") and would help them pursue their dreams in any way possible. She was generous women. Generous with her love, support, and time; she gave so much or herself, truly a selfless lady.
Christian, Humble, Provider...Lorraine made sure her children attended Church and Catholic School – they also learned to pray at an early age. Lorraine made sure each of her daughters had the prettiest dresses and hats to celebrate Easter Sunday; handmade Christmas dresses, and all the appropriate ensembles and accessories for each holiday. She loved St. Jude and habitually prayed to Him and all of the patron saints. She was never without a rosary or her cross necklace. During her grandchildren's sporting events, she would clutch that cross fiercely. She was a competitor in every way possible and was sure Jesus would get that ball in the hoop one way or another! And of course, her grandchildren could do no wrong. As Christians, we are taught to be humble and modest. Well... full disclosure: when it came to her children and grandkids, she struggled. She was so proud and wanted everyone to know it. She didn't need social media. And she "wasn't bragging", she was just so proud she had to tell everyone. She accepted extended family and friends into her life and home if needed, having had her sisters, grandchildren, exchange students, and many others live with her family when they were in need. Later in her life, she worked with foster adults who lived with her for over a ten year period.
Patriot, Protector.... To say Lorraine was patriotic is to say the least. She loved the USA, our flag, our pledge, our independence, and every soldier to ever represent the red, white, and blue. She proudly wore a flag pin on her collar and after 9/11 made sure each of her children had a flag and hung it proudly. People would often ask her if she had a child in the service. She would put her hand over her heart and say, "They are all my children".
Lorraine's Loving Legacy will always be the integrity she lived her life by. She truly lived a life of love, faith, determination, positive encouragement, gratitude, and passion. She loved life, God, all children, animals (but especially dogs), travel, reading, documentaries, marching bands, Drum & Bugle Corps, and all music genres (especially Elvis and Johnny Cash). She loved to dance and have fun and loved decorating every inch of her home for Christmas. She attended musicals, concerts, Broadway shows, children's plays... She enjoyed all sports, especially the sports her grandchildren and children participated in. She was an avid supporter of basketball, baseball, football, gymnastics, baton twirling, tennis, soccer, and dance. She traveled often, even in her 80's, to Europe, Hawaii, Florida, California, Minnesota, North Dakota, Tennessee, Michigan, Iowa... wherever her grandkids took her with their activities, she was there. She loved every opportunity to show her support. Above all, her greatest love was the love she had for her family.
We would be at great fault if we did not include the True Heroes in Lorraine's life and in the lives of so many others. We would like to thank the entire staff of Bethel Home, but in particular the courageous and loving men and women in the Serenity Garden Unit.
These people showed our mother the kind of unconditional love that only comes from love and respect of life, no matter what age, race, gender, or disorder. We can all personally attest to that as we witnessed it firsthand.
Thank you to: Rhonda Bennett, Kingsley Namani, Heather Johnson, Camryn Benson, Lyn Sternat, Jessica Foster, Mark Fabiszak, Jenny Lor, Adanna Okeke, Carol Stinson, Kalicha Ellis, Kerry Hoetschl, Seantay Burks, Cindy DeFord, Deb Mueller, Ding Lual, Nora Reljic, Kelly Buck, Sandy Garbe, Chaplain Mimi, and Alice Hodel.
A very special "thank you" and sincere gratitude to Kelly Buck; Lorraine's "7th daughter". Kelly loved Mom for the past eight years. When we were not allowed to be with our mother and grandmother, Kelly stepped in to make up for our absence. In fact, she just continued to do what she always does: nurture, care, love, and treat each individual with respect and dignity. Our family is blessed to have you in our lives and we know Lorraine loved you dearly.
Lorraine, MUM, Grandma... You are our Rock, our Idol, our Hero! You are a Loving Legend. Your Love for God, Country, and Life is like no other. And your love for family is... well, there are no words. We know we were all loved unconditionally and for that we are eternally grateful. May you continue to watch and guide us as you rejoice in Heaven with Jesus.
Lorraine is preceded in death by her mother and father, Wendal and Mary Klamik; husband Frank Seckar Sr.; sisters Fran Ritter, Marianne Seckar, and Audry Klamik.
Visitation will be held for Lorraine on Wednesday, July 8, 2020, from 9:30am until the time of Mass of Resurrection at 10:30am, all at St. Raphael the Archangel Church, 830 South Westhaven Drive, Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54904. Masks are required and will be available at the church. Interment will follow at Lake View Memorial Park in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. In lieu of flowers, memorials to Bethel Home Health Care workers would be appreciated.
No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
"And I'm proud to be an American
Where at least I know I'm free
And I won't forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me
And I'd proudly stand up next to you and defend Her still today
'Cause there ain't no doubt I love this land
God Bless the USA"
I will remember my Mom as the most loving and caring mother. I think she would have done anything for her children. We did not have very much early on but we never knew that then, because of her. She tried to make sure we had everything we needed. She could take a soup bone and make a 'gourmet' meal out of it.(gravy peas, yum). We thought we were special to have liver sausage sandwiches and green peppers in our school lunch boxes. No one else had them and they were stinky, but we loved them. We always had new hats for Easter Sunday. I still remember shopping at the hat store with her. She was a very energetic and a peppy person. She was also a hand-clapper. She would be clapping to get you to move, ("come on, come on") clapping to have you keep the rhythm, and clap to show you her praise.
I will miss her very much. Kathy
Mom inspired me in so many ways. She was the most hard-working, talented, loving mom. From sewing matching costumes for the family Polkateers to decorating our home like a magical Christmas land. Mom loved Christmas for as long as I can remember. She decorated every inch of her house and placed tinsel piece by piece on 16 foot trees!! If she instilled anything in me, it was the love for Christmas and the joy of giving. I love you mom and will miss you dearly. Laurie
I loved my sweet Grandma. She never forgot a birthday or Christmas. She would send such sweet cards and presents and make me feel very special even though I was one of MANY grandkids. She would babysit us and teach us songs. I'll always fondly remember her taking photos by our pool in the flowers. She crouched down and posed in our flowers. She was an incredibly sweet and loving woman and will be greatly missed. Karli
I didn't get a chance to know my Grandma as much as I would have liked. What I did know, however, was how much love she brought to the world. There are unlimited smiles I know she put on other's faces. She has her own children, grandchildren and great grandchildren who she has forever left an amazing impression on. While I didn't know her as well as I would have liked, it is easy for me to tell from all of the countless wonders she brought to this world what an amazing woman she was. I love her and I will miss her tremendously. Jared
Mom was the greatest lady I have ever met. She was truly a legend in her time; superhero mom with a flair for being able to do triple of what most people do in a 12 hour day.
Her vitality, strength, endurance, love and passion for family, and generosity are just a few of her best qualities. She was able to make all of her 9 children feel as if they were all "the favorite one". We longed to earn our Mother's respect and to make her proud. I was the shyest little girl ever and she helped nurture and strengthen me in so many ways, I can't even begin to list.
She truly was and will always be "the wind beneath my wings".
One of my early memories of mom was when I was 9 years old. I used to help her "fold diapers". As we were folding the diapers, she asked me if I wanted to go to Auntie Marianne's house and visit my cousins. I said yes and she told me that she would trust me to ride my bike there. They lived "on the Highway" and I was shocked that she said that. Mom said I wasn't the baby girl any more, as she had Stevie, Jamie, and then Jeannie and trusted that I could do it! I was scared, but if Mom thought I could do it, well, I was sure I could!! I road the bike the whole way to Auntie Marianne's house thinking, "I'm a big girl now, mom said"!! I was super scared crossing that Highway....but made it there and back.
That is the kind of belief, strength and confidence that mom instilled in me throughout my life.
Another memory is similar to Kathy's.....My first Communion: For not having a lot of money, I am sure that my dress was the best! The veil was gorgeous, the shoes were pristine patent leather white, I had a rosary and a beautiful prayer book, toped off with a little bracelet, ring, and beautiful Holy Cards to go inside that book. I thought I was something!
She made us all feel like we were "always something" !! (I'm pretty sure that I was the 5th girl to wear that dress in our family, but I thought it was designed and made just for me!!
With love, Julie
I lived so far from Grandma and never got to see her much. A couple favorite memories of her are of the dressed up baby dolls she gave us for Christmas one year. And I was really happy when she took a trip to California one year and was able to come see me play in one of my volleyball tournaments. I love and miss you Grandma!
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