Obit: Stephens, Agnes L. (1921 - 2004)
Contact: Crystal Wendt
Surnames: Stephens, Bryan, Cummings, Fischer, Felt, Bush, Rusinko, Palubicki, Kelley, Bittner, Mercer, Breheim, Olson, Sluga
----Source: Winona Daily News (Winona, Minnesota ) 21 Aug. 2004
Stephens, Agnes L. (26 June 1921 - 13 Aug. 2004)
Alma Center - Agnes L. Stephens, 83, of Alma Center, Wis., died Friday, Aug. 13, 2004, at the Pine View Care Center, Black River Falls, where she had resided since April of 2003.
She was born on June 26, 1921, in Neillsville, Wis., to James D. and Agnes Isabelle (Bryan) Cummings. She was the oldest of 11 children.
Agnes graduated in 1939 from Neillsville High School and attended Mt. Sinai Nurses College in Chicago for two years, receiving a cap with a black braid qualifying her for general hospital nursing. For several years, she worked part-time as a nurse at Neillsville Memorial Hospital. She lived in Madison for a short time, and worked part-time as a waitress until a "pie-throwing incident" ended her waitressing career.
Agnes married Eugene Fischer in Chicago in 1946 and they later divorced. On November 4, 1950, she married Harold "Joe" Stephens in Chicago.
While in Chicago, Agnes was employed as the personal secretary for the national director of the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority from 1954 until 1959. In 1959, Harold and Agnes bought a hobby farm in rural Alma Center and in 1968, Agnes began working at Fort McCoy as a transportation clerk. In 1974, she became the bookkeeper at the Empire Gas Company in Merrillan. The couple moved to rural Merrillan around 1980 and in 1982, Agnes returned to Fort McCoy as a clerk in the Training Aid Center until her retirement in 1986. Her husband preceded her in death on March 16, 1988.
Agnes moved to Alma Center in 1991, residing at the Midtown Apartments. She was the secretary for Grace Lutheran Church in Alma Center for many years. She also worked for the Jackson County Department of Health and Human Services delivering senior meals and also as the Alma Center senior meal site manager. She served as treasurer for the Alma Center American Legion Auxiliary for many years and she also volunteered at the Pine View Care Center.
Agnes enjoyed fishing and loved to garden, joyfully sharing her produce. She and Harold had many beloved poodles. "JJ" was her favorite because he was the friendliest and he seemed to understand her thoughts. She also loved poetry, and particularly enjoyed reading and memorizing poems.
Besides her husband, Agnes was preceded in death by her parents, James and Agnes "Belle" Cummings, and by four brothers, William, Robert, John and James. She is survived by one son, Dean (Janet) Stephens, Alma Center; two granddaughters, Karla (Kurt) Stephens-Felt, Neenah, and Tracy (Bob) Stephens-Bush, Jackson, Wyo.; six brothers and sisters, Donald (Dolly) Cummings, Arlington Heights, Ill., Jo-Ann Rusinko, Warrens, Mary Palubicki, Sparta, Nancy (Jack) Kelley, Friendship, Thomas (Pat) Cummings, Humbird and Allen Cummings, Sun Prairie; besides many other relatives and friends.
Funeral services for Agnes L. Stephens were held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 16, 2004, at Grace Lutheran Church with burial in the East Lawn Cemetery, both Alma Center. The Reverend Paul Bittner officiated. Friends called on Sunday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Jensen-Modjeski Funeral Home, Hixton, and also one hour prior to services at the church.
Casketbearers were April Breheim, Dale Cummings, Gary Cummings, Amy Mercer, Jackie Olson and Crystal Sluga. Honorary bearers were Ethan Breheim, Dylan Olson and Colton Sluga.
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