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Rev. Louise Emilie Oakes

March 19, 2019 GMT

MADISON -- The Rev. Louise Emilie Oakes (née Kaercher) died on Friday, March 8, 2019, at the Agrace Hospice Care Residence in Madison.

Louise was born on Jan. 24, 1936, to parents Raymond and Cora (Maas) Kaercher in Watertown.

On Aug. 30, 1958, Louise married Edward L. Oakes of Wisconsin Rapids. Following college graduation -- UW Class of ’59 -- and the birth of a daughter, the family moved to Minnesota. In 1967, after the birth of three sons, the family returned to Madison. In 1973, after completing IT training at Herzing Institute, she began a career in IT at American Family Insurance, Inc. During this time she served as deacon at Grace Episcopal Church (Madison) for five years. She left AmFam in 1991 to enroll in Seabury Western Theological Seminary (Evanston, Illinois). After seminary -- Class of 1992 -- she was ordained a priest in the Episcopal Church of the United States. Over the next decade she served as rector of St. Helena’s Episcopal Church (Burr Ridge, Illinois) and The Episcopal Church of the Holy Spirit (Greensboro, North Carolina). She retired in 2001, and returned to Madison in 2004.


Louise was preceded in death by her husband, Edward, and her daughter Victoria. She is survived by her siblings: Diane (Kaercher) Stumpf (Madison) and Ray Kaercher (Stevens Point); her sons: Christopher (Glen Ellyn, Illinois), Colin and Thomas (both of Madison); her grandsons: Jacob (Round Lake Beach, Illinois) and Ian (Milwaukee).

Memorial services will be celebrated at 2 p.m. on March 30 at Grace Episcopal Church (116 W. Washington Ave., Madison) officiated by the Rt. Rev. Steven A. Miller. Visitation will begin at 1 p.m. A small reception will be held following the service. Flowers are welcome, and memorials may be given to Grace Church.