On the evening of June 7, surrounded by her family, Janet peacefully took her last breath and went home to Jesus. We lost a beautiful soul. She fought such a good fight for many years yet finally succumbed to this horrific disease. She was diagnosed 12 years ago with Alzheimer’s and we were so very lucky to have her for so many more years after the diagnosis. Although it eventually robbed her of her memories and so many other things, she always remained the sweet, happy and cheerful person she always was. That was something not even this disease could take from her even at the end. Everyone that knew Janet loved her.
She is now back to her young, vibrant and healthy self, free of the chains of the past 12 years. We know in our hearts she is now reunited in paradise with her husband, Ralph, her baby boy who died at birth, her parents and all the other loved ones who were waiting to greet her with open arms.
She was born to Clarence & Erna Hempel on January 13, 1932 and was their only child. She never knew her birth father as he passed away when she was born. Her mom married Nels Geisler years later. Janet worked at Gimbels in downtown Milwaukee for many years until she’d meet the love of her life, Ralph. They loved to go dancing at the Eagle’s Club in Milwaukee and enjoyed being together. They married in 1956 and together they raised 2 daughters, Helen and Christine. Janet quit her job and became a full time housewife and mother. She lost the love of her life when Ralph passed away in 2001 and several years later moved to Appleton near her younger daughter, Christine. It was while living there that she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and lived out the remainder of her years.
She is survived by her daughters Helen (Mike) Mertes, and Christine (Joel) Underwood, grandchildren: Emily Mertes, Janel Underwood and Crosby Underwood and other family and friends.
She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Ralph Szyszkiewicz, parents Clarence Hempel & Erna Geisler, stepfather Nels Geisler and her sweet furry companion, Misha.
A Mass of Resurrection for Janet will take place on Thursday, June 13, 2019 at 11 AM at St. Matthias Catholic Church (9306 W Beloit Rd) Milwaukee. Interment will take place in St. Adalbert Catholic Cemetery in Milwaukee. Friends may visit the family on Thursday from 10 AM until the time of Mass directly at church.
Rest peacefully with the angels until we see you again.