Elizabeth Ann Crawford, 88
Elizabeth Ann (Betty) Crawford passed away 04/23/2020 at home in Burnsville, MN under the care of Fairview Hospice and surrounded by her family.
She was born April 30, 1931 in Stevens Point, WI, at the home of her parents on Patch Street. Daughter of the late Harry and Frances (Osowski) Kluck, she grew up at St Thomas Aquinas orphanage in Green Bay, WI, following the death of her mother in 1936. She was sponsored at St Thomas by her late uncle, Father Chester J. Osowski, who was a priest associated with the church, school and orphanage. She was sponsored by the Friede family of Appleton, WI and spent holidays in their home and summers at their cottage on Pelican Lake. The summer of her high school Senior year, she met Jack Crawford when she traveled through Antigo for the annual cottage visit. They courted long distance until she graduated and moved to Antigo to work at Woolworths. She married the late John T (Jack) Crawford on November 10, 1950 at Calvary Lutheran church on 7th Avenue in Antigo. They spent their life together in Antigo, raising their family and supporting the local community.
Betty loved making big meals for her family and friends. If there was a BBQ at their home on 10th avenue, family and friends were there. Her meals and desserts were always the best. She enjoyed keeping the yard extra tidy, planting flowers, and decorating the house for every occasion and holiday. She loved to dance, and she and Jack attended dances at Polar Country Club in their younger years. She also loved to play cards, backgammon and cribbage and had a competitive spirit. Her grandsons would tell you that she was well known for running the length of the soccer field during their games and for cheering hard on the sidelines at rugby matches. She and Jack often hosted families from the Antigo Radar Base for holiday meals and BBQ’s and she welcomed the diversity of faiths and cultures into their home. She cared for many children in the neighborhood so their parents could work. She was the bookkeeper for Jack’s Service Station and later returned to work at Copp’s Department Store and Kmart, and retired from Ben Franklin in 2002 following a stroke. She loved working in retail and spoke of her co-workers and customers fondly. She was a dispatcher for Ambulance calls and was a strong operations partner with Jack in the Crawford Ambulance Service. She also answered emergency calls for Master Gas and for the City Gas Company up until she and Jack moved to Minnesota in 2008.
She was a dance mom, the keeper of time for piano, clarinet and saxophone practice, the seamstress for special dresses and alterations, and the teacher of all things cooking, baking and finance. She encouraged us and prioritized money for us to be involved in music and never missed a performance for band, choir, or dance. She and Jack were active in the Antigo Band Parents for years, raising money and supporting students with rides to solo and ensemble and sporting competitions for band and cheerleading. She baked for the church for sales and funerals, and she helped with quilting for the missions.
Betty loved to travel later in life when grand babies were born and to visit family, but most of all she loved to be at home, a place that meant the world to her and a place she loved to share with others.
She is survived by three children, Peter (Wendy) Crawford of Stevens Point, WI, Cheryl (Bill Jeffries) Crawford of Zionsville, IN and Sue (Dennis) Doucette of Burnsville, MN. Six grandsons, Nicholas Doucette, Korbyn Doucette, Austin Lewis, John Crawford, Erik Doucette, Paul Jeffries and one great grandchild due in September 2020. She is further survived by brothers Lawrence (Lynette) Kluck and Leonard (Rita) Kluck, many nieces, nephews and friends. Through hospice for Jack she met Anne McCLoskey whose compassionate care turned into a deep and lasting friendship including weekly afternoons out for lunch or pie and occasional visits to the PAC for special events.
She was preceded in death by brothers Stanley and Chester Kluck and sister Cecile Novak.
At her request, no public service will take place. Family will gather privately in celebration of her life. Burial will be in the Elmwood Cemetery with Strasser Roller Funeral Home assisting the family. In lieu of flowers please donate to end childhood hunger, support your local hospice or give to cancer research.
Our thanks to the Drs., nurses and staff at the University of Minnesota Surgical Oncology, Fairview Ridges Hospital and Fairview Internal Medicine for her recent surgical and oncology care and to the Physical and Occupational Therapists at the TCU and Fairview MHealth Home care for their incredible support during her rehab. The Fairview Hospice team provided compassionate care and spiritual support and we are thankful for their dedication to our family. Our gratitude to Dr Gary Hegranes, family physician and friend, for her stroke care that allowed us to have so many more years to make memories.
Special thanks to her son-in-law, Dennis Doucette, who made her meals and managed her home care for the past 12 years. His commitment to her comfort and safety is a testament to his love and compassion for family and we are all tremendously grateful.