Etheljean Valitchka Obituary

Etheljean (Schomaker) Valitchka
Etheljean (Schomaker) Valitchka

October 29, 1922 - December 19, 2017
Born in Marinette, WI
Resided in Marinette, Wisconsin
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Etheljean (Schomaker) Valitchka, age 95, died on December 19, 2017. She was born on October 29, 1922 in Marinette, Wisconsin to Werner and Ethelyn Schomaker. On May 2, 1944, she married Matthew James Valitchka, who lovingly nicknamed her “Ejay” during their courtship.
Born to Matthew and Etheljean were five children: Claudia (George) Sanders, Cynthia (Bill) Bomber, Rebecca (Jim Frederick), Matthew James II (Teo) and Luke (Sherri) Valitchka.
Etheljean attended Lourdes Catholic School in Marinette, grades one through twelve, graduating in 1940. She then enrolled in Marinette County Normal Teachers College. Upon graduation, she solo taught grades one through eight at Garfield Country School in the Town of Peshtigo until the time of her marriage.
Ejay was clearly a Renaissance Woman. A very devoted wife and mother, her tireless energy, creativity, irrepressible optimism and faithful joy filled all the lives around her. She found time to teach religious education, be a Cub Scout leader and a special needs tutor. In later years, she volunteered at St. Vincent de Paul and participated regularly in Adoration at Holy Family Parish in Marinette, where she was a member.
Homemaker extraordinaire. Ejay’s cooking and baking were very delicious. The aroma of baking bread filled her home regularly, colorful dinners always included all major food groups, and the dinner table was attractively appointed with lighted candles and seasonal decorations.
Before it was vogue, Ejay was a skilled sportswoman. She loved to swim, played tennis and bowled skillfully, tolerated golf because her expert putting won prizes, and cross-country skied. All eyes on the ice rink were drawn to Matt and Ejay, hands crisscrossed, as they gracefully skated a waltz around the rink. Her gamesmanship did not end there. She was an avid, very competitive table games player, winning most Scrabble games, hosting many Bridge games, and all the while insisting that everyone follow the rules of the game. Rarely could Ejay be found without a book in hand, thoroughly enjoying both fiction and nonfiction.
After retirement, Ejay and Matt resided in Florida for fourteen years. There Ejay volunteered as a nutrition advisor for the ladies in their housing community, attended many social functions and enjoyed countless trips to Busch Gardens, Strawberry Festivals and golf tournaments. In 1999, the Valitchkas returned to Marinette where they built a home on beautiful Wilderness Trail, their “Woodsong”. This relocation fulfilled Ejay’s wishes to be closer to her children and grandchildren.
A big smile and contagious laughter were this proudly Irish woman’s trademarks, and she enjoyed an occasional chilled martini or her signature “EJ” brandy and water. Songbirds and wild life were closely observed and appreciated by this Nature lover. Not one of her children can look upon a beautiful red cardinal without sentimental regard for their very special mother. Her kindness and love touched everyone she met and were beautiful, selfless gifts to her family right to the day she passed away.
Etheljean was preceded in death by her parents; two sisters, Dorothy Schomaker and Lucille (and Ralph) Alfredson; brothers and their spouses, Werner II and Rita, Patrick and Bernice Schomaker and sister-in-law, June Schomaker; her husband, Matthew; and three daughters, Becky and premature twins, Mary and Josephine.
Surviving are her four children; Jim Frederick; seven grandchildren, Natalie, Gregory and Andy Valitchka, Zoe Valitchka and Paul (Jen) Sanders, Gina (Eric) Larsen and Aleta (Craig) Young. Ejay is further survived by eight great-grandchildren, Alex and Carrie Young, Autumn, Caleb, Noah and Chloe Sanders and Lydia and Henry Larsen; a brother, Herman “Bob” Schomaker; sister-in-law, Dorothy Coopman; and many nieces and nephews.
A Funeral Mass for Etheljean Valitchka will take place at Assumption B.V. M. chapel in Pulaski, Wis. at 11 a.m. on Saturday, January 13, 2018, with visitation beginning at 10 a.m. The family thanks Rennes-East for their ten years of care for Ejay. Hansen-Onion-Martell funeral home of Marinette is assisting with arrangements.

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Assumption B.V.M. Church
124 E. Pulaski St.
Pulaski, Wisconsin USA 54162
Saturday, January 13, 2018
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Assumption B.V.M. Church
124 E. Pulaski St.
Pulaski, Wisconsin USA 54162
Saturday, January 13, 2018
11:00 AM