Irene Kathleen Schian Wanke

Irene Kathleen Schian Wanke, 92, of Tecumseh, formerly of Cheboygan and Frankenmuth, passed away Sunday, July 28, 2019 in Tecumseh, Mich. Irene was born February 3, 1927 in Reese, daughter of the late George and Susan (O’Leary) Schian. On October 2, 1948 she was married to Joseph J. Wanke in St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church in Reese. He predeceased her  on July 9, 2001. She retired in 1980 as a secretary at General Motors after 30 years of service. She and her husband moved to Cheboygan after her retirement and then to Frankenmuth in 1995.  

Irene was a member of Blessed Trinity Catholic Church in Frankenmuth, the Frankenmuth Women’s Club, and served as past president of the Northern Michigan GM Retirees Club. She enjoyed a good game of cards, golfing, and most of all visiting with friends and relatives.

Surviving is her son, John J. (Sue Brinning) Wanke of Tecumseh; three grandchildren,  Bradley Wanke (Tracy), Meggan Wanke-Hammond (Matthew) and Christopher Wanke (Laura); four great-grandchildren, Emma and Lily Hammond, Isabella Wanke and India Wanke Burk.

In addition to her parents and husband, Irene was predeceased by two grandchildren, Joey and Sarah Wanke; and her siblings and their spouses, Harvey and Olivia Schian, Herbert and Marie Schian, Clifford and Eleanor Schian, Helen and Ralph Ackerman, and Oscar and Evelyn Rau. Irene has many nieces and nephews whom she and Joe dearly loved and were very good to both of them.

A memorial liturgy to celebrate her life will take place at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019 at the Blessed Trinity Catholic Church, 958 E. Tuscola St. in Frankenmuth with Father Patrick Jankowiak officiating. Irene’s family will receive friends at the church on Saturday from 10 a.m. until the time of the liturgy. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Lenawee, 1903 Wolf Creek Hwy., Adrian, MI 49221, who cared for Irene during the last stage of her life. Envelopes will be available at the visitation.

Cremation and memorial services have been entrusted to the care of the Ware-Smith-Woolever Funeral Directors, 9940 Saginaw St., Reese, MI 48757.


Tecumseh Herald


110 E. Logan St.
P.O. Box 218
Tecumseh, MI 49286

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