Bernice McAleavey

Bernice Ann McAleavey, age 97, of River Falls, WI passed away on Wednesday, December 19, 2018 at the River Falls Area Hospital. Bernice was born on December 12, 1921 in Cherma Township, Pierce County, Wisconsin to Samuel and Rose Johnson. The third youngest of 13 children, Bernice grew up in a busy household, filled with lots of love and sweet memories. On October 15, 1947 she was united in marriage to the love of her life, LaVerne James McAleavey. Their marriage was blessed with 3 children, Terry, Gayle, and Linda. Bernice and LaVerne shared 69 years together until his passing on February 22, 2017.

Bernice worked many retail jobs, but her fondest memories were the years she bartended at Emma’s Bar in River Falls, WI owned by her sister in law Emma Johnson, spouse of her brother Stan. Most important to Bernice was her family. To her great-grandchildren, Bernice was known as “Grandma Cookie” for her excellent baking skills. She enjoyed dancing, playing cards, and fishing with her husband and family. In her quiet time, she enjoyed doing needle point. She was especially fond of watching game shows, with her favorites being Jeopardy and The Price is Right.

She was preceded in death by her husband, LaVerne; her parents, Samuel and Rose Johnson; twin granddaughters, Amanda and Jennifer Jensen; brothers, Stan, Urias, Lyle, Ronald, Lee, Marshall, Herbert, Virgil, and Howard; sisters, Gladys Barr, Helen Pechacek and Rosella Johnson. There were also many sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, as well as many nieces and nephews.

Bernice will remain in the hearts of her children, Terry McAleavey of River Falls, Gayle (Scott) Boumeester of Hudson, and Linda (Chris) Jensen of River Falls; grandchildren, Dustin (Shelley) Hovde, Cassidy Hovde, Travis Hovde, Garrett Jensen, Samantha (Luke) Rose, and Lacey McAleavey; great-grandchildren, Gracie Hovde, Bryn Buschmann, and Cashten Buschmann; her sister-in-law, Grace Swenson; many nieces and nephews.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held 3:00 pm Thursday, December 27, 2018 at St. Bridget Catholic Church, 211 East Division Street, River Falls, WI, with Rev. Fr. Gerald Harris officiating. A Gathering of Family and Friends will take place 1:30 pm until the start of Mass. Interment will take place at St. Bridget Catholic Cemetery immediately following the Mass. Bernice’s grandchildren will serve as honorary urn bearers. Memorials preferred to St. Bridget Catholic Church. Funeral services are entrusted to O’Connell-Benedict Family Funeral Home of River Falls, WI.


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