Jean Marie Grasso, 83, of Pence, died peacefully with family beside her on Monday, October 10, in Hudson, Wisconsin.
Jean was born on September 5, 1933 and grew up on the family farm on a street affectionately know as ‘chicken alley’ in Iron Belt, Wisconsin. Jean cared for the home and the farm along with her sister Clara (Gotta) her twin brother Jack and her older brother Lawrence ‘Patcha’. Her parents taught her that family and hospitality are no small things. Their bonds were forged with weekly Sunday gatherings of smear, touch football, Grandpa’s salamini and ‘dago’ bread. No one ever left the Vandevoorde home hungry.
She married Frank Grasso on July 20, 1954 and together raised three children during 60 years of marriage. Jean is survived by her son, Ken (Laurie) and two daughters- Darcy Hautala (Steve Knutson) and Gina Turner. Her children made her proud. Their dedication to making the world a better place gave her a true sense of satisfaction. She is also survived by her grandchildren Christina Grasso, Jacob and Jordan Turner; and by her brother Jack and her sister-in-law Jean (Lolly) as well as many nieces and nephews.
Her father Raymond Vandevoorde, fought in the trenches for the Allies in the ‘Great War’ while his bride to be- Godlieve quartered German soldiers at their home in Wingene, Belgium. Led by her mother’s generosity and benevolence, Jean and Frank could be often found with friends, family or travelers sharing beverages, entertaining and playing cards. Jean enjoyed travel and had a strong connection with her cousins in Wingene.
Jean held many jobs during her career. After graduating from Iron Belt High School she worked for Lake Superior District Power Company, Whitecap Mountain, Air Craft Instruments and was the Iron County Deputy Clerk.
She was a lucky woman in many ways. Above all, Jean will be remembered for her good nature and her love for children. She was a happy person, laughed easily, left only friends with her passing. She is sorely missed by her family.
Jean’s family would like to thank the staff of the Red Cedar Canyon for their patience and assistance during her recent stay at their facility. Out of respect for Jean’s wishes, cremation has taken place. Private family services were held.