Obituary of Dorothy Helen Stuemke
Dorothy Helen Stuemke was taken to her eternal resting place on Thursday September 9, 2021. She passed away unexpectedly, yet peacefully, the day after her 88th birthday. She celebrated her birthday in style, with phone calls, flowers, a special lunch, dinner at Ski Shores, and a special birthday cake. She was happy and thankful for the day!
Dorothy was born September 8, 1933 in Chicago, Illinois. She was baptized on March 24, 1940 at Nazareth Lutheran Church in Chicago, by Pastor Kohn, who also confirmed her on March 30, 1947. A few years later, on December 28, 1955, it was Pastor Kohn who married Dorothy to her husband, Norman Stuemke of Altamont, Illinois.
Dorothy, Dor, Mom, Granny and Great Granny was one of the most joyful, kind, generous, encouraging, spiritual, and loving people on this earth. She always had a compliment, a kind word, a bag of goodies, or a special note to share and make you feel special and loved. Dor was smart, fun, intelligent and loved talking sports with anyone.
Joy was our Mom’s theme word for her life. She shared her joy of being a mom by being our biggest cheerleader and encourager. We are very grateful for the most valuable gift she gave us: her example of how to lead a Christian life full of joy and gratitude.
Dor began her professional career after graduating from Concordia - River Forest, Illinois. She started teaching at Trinity Lutheran School of Austin in 1955 after following her fiancé Norm to Texas to start Redeemer Lutheran School on Anderson Lane. She soon took a job at Redeemer and spent the majority of her career teaching first grade with Norm as her principal. Teaching was not only her job, but her life’s passion. She not only instructed children academically, but mentored them spiritually. She also mentored many youth, including her grandchildren, during confirmation classes. Some of her fondest memories were of working with Norm at summer camps at Camp Lone Star in La Grange, Texas, worshipping with the children outdoors.
Dor loved traveling through the US and Europe with Norm and her dear friend, Marion Prellop. Trips with family to Colorado and to the beach were especially dear to Dor, as she always enjoyed God’s beautiful creations.
She loved heading to Giddings for annual Schkade-Stuemke family gatherings to celebrate life-long friendships.
Hosting family gatherings was a joy to Dor. She was a wonderful cook and ultimate hostess. She loved having her family around her and doting on her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She took pride in frequently sending beautifully hand-written notes to family and friends. She had an amazing memory and would listen intently about what was going on in your life!
Granny spent countless hours supporting the grandchildren’s swim meets, recitals, soccer, baseball, basketball, cross country, graduations, and the Special Olympics.
We celebrate knowing she is with God and family members that have gone before her, but she will be dearly missed by her family, her friends, and so many others whose lives she touched. We are thankful for her incredible legacy of leading a Christ-centered life and being an example to her family and friends of how to treat others, care for others, and love unconditionally.
Dorothy is survived by daughters Penny Hanson and husband David (Austin), Patty Hamm (Austin), and Pam Blick and husband Mark (Houston). Her grandchildren are Jaclyn Hanson (Austin), Katy Hanson Furqueron and husband Connor (Houston), Carter Hanson and wife Annie (Fort Worth), Lauren and Jenna Hamm (Austin), Anna and Christina Blick (Houston), and Aaron Blick and wife Megan (Katy TX). Her great-grandchildren are Norah and Greg Blick (Katy TX). Dor is also survived by other beloved family members: nephew Harry Quinlan, wife Gayle, and daughters Melissa and Kelly (Chammahon, Illinois); cousin Noreen Burke (Wheaton, Illinois); and the Stuemke relatives in Illinois. In addition, Dorothy is survived by extended Hamm family and friends in Oklahoma and Texas.
Dor was preceded in death by husband Norm Stuemke, parents Dorothy and Harry Quinlan, brother and sister-in-law, Harry W. and Maggie Quinlan, and son-in-law, Doug Hamm.
A memorial service honoring Dor’s life will be held on Saturday, September 25th at 2:00 at Redeemer Lutheran Church at 1500 W. Anderson Lane, Austin, Texas 78757.
The service will also be live-streamed on Redeemer’s website at Redeemer Austin (live.redeemer.net). For those attending in person, masks are strongly recommended for everyone’s safety.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Redeemer Lutheran School or Church at Redeemer Austin, 1500 W. Anderson Lane, Austin, Texas 78757. Please specify the donation is “In Memory of Dorothy Stuemke”.
“Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18