Elaine Marie Haas, 91, died peacefully on Sunday at Fort Atkinson Health Care. She was born in Racine on March 28, 1929, to the late Edwin and Rose (nee: French) Smerchek.
Elaine married Gregory Thomas Haas on May 20, 1950, they celebrated their 50th golden anniversary together.
A loving mother to Thomas Haas, West Allis, Kathleen (John) Woodbury, Racine, Edward (Marie) Haas, Racine, Laurie (Mick) Metsa, Duluth, Gary (Chris) Haas, Waupun, Karen (Michael) Semonson, Baraboo and David Haas, Fox Lake. Preceding her in death, her husband Gregory, her son Steven, and her daughter-in-law Kathleen J. Haas. Educated in Racine, she was a graduate of Horlick’s Class of ’47 and Moraine Park Technical College. Haas dedicated her life to raising her family of eight – four sons and three daughters, and her developmentally disabled and blind son. On becoming an empty nester, she bloomed by directing her energy to helping others through volunteering at church and in the community. Elaine led the Waupun Hospital Auxiliary, the St. Joseph’s Catholic Church Daughters of Isabella, the Annual Church Festival, and passionately sang alto in the St. Joseph’s and Racine St. Paul’s Church Choir. She was an Al-Anon Sponsor, and a founder of the Beaver Dam Alano Club and the Racine Grove Club. As a long term, Fort Atkinson Health Care resident, she acted as President, riding in parades and advocating for other resident’s needs.
An avid camper, she enjoyed many adventures at her Camper’s Island site, Old Hickory, on Lake Sinissippi with her 10 grandchildren, Ryan (Nellie) Lashley, Jennifer (Chad) Ohlendorf, Becka Haas, Amanda (Nick) Isaksson, August (Jessica) Haas, and Samantha (Garrett) Ladd, Maija (Lucas) Stellmach, and Ahna (Reed) Wargin, Spencer (Caleb) Semonson, and Holden Semonson. Her legacy of love will live on in her 14 great grandchildren: Katelyn Lashley, Grace, Luke, Ruthie, and Lucy Ohlendorf, Beckett and Nola Isaksson, Baby Girl 4th of July Haas, Louise Evelyn Ladd, Thomas, Tayah and Colbie Stellmach, Tenley and Case Wargin.
Elaine’s family circle extends with her surviving in-laws: Bernadette (Al) Morrow of Sun Prairie, Norman (Ruth) Haas of Phoenix, and Daniel (Marlene) Haas of Neshkoro, Larry Jansen, Laurine Haas and Yvonne Haas of Racine. Preceding her in death, her parents, her parents-in-law, brothers Mel and Edwin Smerchek, sisters-in-law Grace and Helen Smerchek, brothers-in-law Gerard and John Haas, Richard Malko, Joe Cook, and sisters-in-law Germaine Brigman, Diane Cook, Rosemary Jansen, and Marjorie Malko. She was the proud aunt of 70 Smerchek and Haas nieces and nephews.
A private graveside service will be celebrated on Thursday, 6/18 at Holy Family Cemetery, Caledonia with Father Richard Molter officiating. A celebration of Elaine’s life will be scheduled this fall for family and friends. The Elaine M. Haas family extends their gratitude to the staff at Fort Atkinson Health Care and Rainbow Hospice for their loving, exceptional care of our beloved.
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